Entrepreneurs often ask me why they need a website if they already have a business page on Facebook. In this post, I will answer that question.
Probably the biggest reason people are attracted to using Facebook is because it doesn’t cost anything. That, and it’s quick and easy to use. Keep in mind, the main purpose of this essentially free tool, is to capture the attention of potential customers. In less than an hour’s time, basic information about your business and/or service can be posted, allowing customers and prospective customers to engage with you almost immediately. Sounds like a great way to establish an online presence, right?
Though Facebook does have its place in digital marketing, there are several drawbacks to depending on it as your only source of an online business presence. Facebook may have over 700 million users visiting its pages daily, but only a small percentage of its users will ever find and “like” your Facebook Business page. The only interaction these potential customers have with your business comes through your news feed, all while distractions appear throughout your page, drawing the viewer’s focus and attention away from your business.
Since getting your message out to as many viewers as possible is the name of the game, the only way to get more people liking your page, is to “boost” your page posts. Once your first post is made, Facebook makes it pretty clear they want you to establish a daily budget so you can receive an estimated number of clicks that could possibly boost your call to action. In other words, the only way to reach more people using Facebook is to pay (so much for being free!) for boosting your page/posts.
Another drawback is that the templated format of Facebook offers very little control over its layouts and design. The header and profile pictures may be customized, but you cannot change the colors of your Facebook page, so you are stuck with blue, white and gray, whether it goes with your logo colors and branding or not.
The biggest drawback of all, in my humble opinion, is that you are bound to Facebook’s terms and conditions, which are continuously being modified. In essence, Facebook has become the “middleman” between your business and your customers, which gives you less control than you probably thought you had. Imagine waking up one morning and discovering that all you business content and customer contact information is missing. You then learn that Facebook has removed your business page for a terms of service violation, which they are legally allowed to do at their discretion, with no prior notice or explanation to you,
This in itself, seems to be a pretty good reason to have a website. Here are a few more good reasons:
A website makes it easier for potential customers to learn all about your business and the products and/or services it offers.
A website increases the credibility and trustability of your business. After all, a website says you’re serious about business and you plan to be around for awhile!
You have complete creative control of your website’s navigation, its layout and design, which is uniquely suited to you and your brand and products and services.
A website provides measurable analytics, giving you insight into how your customers are interacting on your site, which pages they most frequently visit, how long they are on each page, etc.
A website provides a strong base for adding in Facebook and other social media channels to give your business the online presence it needs.
Let me summarize by saying this. Nothing will do more to increase the professionalism and credibility of your developing and/or established business, than a website built with your customers and prospective customers in mind. Such a well designed, professional and creative website will function as the cornerstone of your online presence and help you to grow your business in today’s online world.