6 Reasons Why Your Facebook Page Should Not Replace Your Website
In difficult times, businesses usually look for ways to reduce costs to remain efficient. Unfortunately, marketing is often the first component to be cut. With the increasing popularity of social media for businesses, taking advantage of Facebook as a free resource is a no-brainer. However, many companies make the mistake of using social media platforms like Facebook as their only web presence. In this article we will discuss 6 reasons why your business’s Facebook page should not be a replacement for a company website, but should complement it.
Facebook makes it easy to share content with your network, and have others share that content with their networks, allowing for information to spread. This strategy, however, can be a double-edged sword if not paired with your company’s official website.
For example, you want to publish a promotion for your hotel on Facebook. You go to your business’s Facebook page and create a post with an attractive photo, and a message describing your promotion. Sarah from New York is looking for a hotel in Aruba to spend the winter holidays, and comes across your Facebook promotion.
She is interested in the promotion, and goes to your Facebook page to find out more about it. She can’t find a company website listed on your Facebook page, and doesn’t know how to make a reservation. Instead of calling the phone number listed on your Facebook page, she goes to a familiar hotel chain’s website, books a room online, and has her reservation confirmed within minutes.
Having an official website would have allowed Sarah to find out more about your hotel, and increase her confidence about booking a hotel she may never have heard of before. People want to feel that they have made a good decision, especially when something is new to them. An official website, with your own branded domain name, helps build an image of trust, and increases credibility.
In your website you make your own rules. You determine what you want on your site, how you want it to appear, and no one can tell you otherwise. By controlling your design, you can choose colors, fonts, photos, and layouts that suit your brand’s image to visually communicate your message.
Facebook only has the generic blue and white, limited number of tabs (some of which cannot be removed whether you like it or not), and predetermined information fields you can fill out. It is very simplistic, making it difficult to convey your brand’s personality. In addition, Facebook can change the layout or features of your Facebook page at any time, and they will not change it back just for you. Very recently Facebook completely changed the way business pages look, and changes were applied without notice or chance of changes.
Along with the layout, the way the content is displayed on your website is extremely critical. For example, on your site’s home page you can stress specific things you want to draw attention to, like specific calls to action, a video, or list of services you want to push. On Facebook you do not have a specific home page. What you have is a continually growing feed of posts and content that disappears from view over time. Some things which may have caught someone’s attention may quickly be replaced by newer posts.
If you want to promote other companies on your site, like a business partner or a company whose services complement yours, you have the ability to sell advertising space on your website. Advertisements on your site that complement your products or services can also further enhance your credibility and brand image.
You could have an advertisement for a car rental company on your hotel’s website, which will help your customers continue to plan their vacation in Aruba. Targeted ads like Google AdSense are also a great way to earn money from your site. Selling ad space is not possible on Facebook.
Landing pages are pages on your website designed to serve a specific purpose and to lead website visitors to take a particular action. They are a great way to boost conversions on your site, especially for special promotions. For example, instead of leading people to your Facebook page, your Facebook promotion will lead them directly to a specific page on your website.
This landing page has all the information about the specific promotion, and makes it easy for customers to take the necessary action e.g. book a room or request a quote or simply get in touch. Basically, the purpose of your Facebook promotion, and social media in general, is to “pull” customers to your website where they can find more specific, targeted and controllable information about your company.
Although creating a Facebook page is free, to get seen by your audience is not as easy as it used to be. Over the years Facebook has moved toward a “freemium” model, meaning that businesses must pay Facebook to increase reach and visibility of their posts. Facebook has even adjusted the organic reach of those who already like your Facebook page down to about 2%.
This means that if you have 1000 Facebook fans, your posts will only appear on the newsfeed of about 20 of them. To reach more, you must boost your posts by paying for them. Comparatively, on a website, if your SEO is done right, your website could get a lot of traffic through search engines like Google, at little to no cost. Clearly Google also offers paid ads on search, but for many websites organic results still deliver more than 60% of website traffic.
Because your website is under your control, you can incorporate advanced features that enhance the user experience. For example, a customized reservation form for your hotel or restaurant, will allow you to collect the specific information you need to fulfill your customer’s’ requests. In addition, this will make it easier for your customers to directly request information instead of sending an e-mail or making a phone call.
You also have the ability to limit certain content, or give additional functionality to users on your website by having a login to view specific features or client-specific information. These features are not possible on your Facebook business page.
Overall, Facebook offers a lot to business owners in terms of presence that perhaps otherwise they would not have. Nonetheless, your official website definitely wins in terms of how your business is presented, how much control you have over your content, and guiding users to your products and services. When used effectively, social media can help guide customers to your website where they can find out more about your company.
CaribMedia designs modern, customized websites to fit your business’ specific needs, and also offers advice as to how to maximize the relationship between social media platforms and your website for a win-win. If you would like an effective website that converts leads into paying customers, contact us and we will be pleased to assist you!