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When it comes to creating an online presence, small businesses are spoilt for choice. Social media is enormously popular and is often promoted as the best way to build a brand. 1.32 billion people check their Facebook page at least once a month and 654 million users log into Facebook on a mobile device every day. So, from a statistical perspective, there are a lot of good reasons to start off with a Facebook page for your small business.
The thing is, although Facebook can be useful, relying on Facebook alone is not going to help you build a successful business in the long term. The biggest problem with Facebook is that it is continually moving the goal posts. Facebook is in business to make money and paid advertising is one of its biggest money-spinners.
Facebook advertising is not cheap, either, so a lot of small businesses prefer to drum up interest in their products and services by making regular posts and ‘sharing’ content for free. Unfortunately, thanks to the recent changes in Facebook’s Edge Rank algorithm, only 16% of your Facebook fans will see the posts you make in their news feed. There are also other disadvantages to relying solely on a Facebook page for your business, including:
Facebook has its benefits, but don’t make the mistake of thinking it is the only viable online platform. It isn’t, and for many businesses, Facebook didn’t work for them at all.
A website is always a better option if you want control over your brand. You own the website so you can design it and control the content. A website looks more professional, which increases the credibility of your business. Once you have a website you can add new pages, link to a payment gateway, and accept online orders for your products and services.
A website is a great place to market your business. Facebook controls what you post and who sees it, but when you have a website you are free to include a wide variety of different marketing materials, including customer testimonials, videos, and information about special promotions; you can also add a blog to your website.
Facebook can be a useful start-up platform, but in the long-term, your business will benefit greatly from building a traditional web presence. You can’t ignore social media, particularly Facebook, but the functionality of social media is limited and that is its biggest drawback.
If you would like more information on the benefits of building a website for your business, give us a call today and let us talk you through the different options. Also if you need help setting up a Facebook page for your business, check out our guide to creating a Facebook business page.