Shae Givens, CEO and founder of Wildfire Marketing, gives expert advice on utilizing Facebook for small businesses.
(Photo courtesy of Shae Givens)
Can a Facebook business page replace a business website?
It is becoming more and more common for consumers to turn to social media platforms to get information about a business, especially now that the top platforms offer e-commerce features. It is feasible, convenient and practical to replace a business website with a Facebook page.
However, a dedicated website also tells consumers that you mean business. It gives your business more credibility than a Facebook page alone, and it gives the consumer a sense of confidence in the products-services being offered. The perception is that companies with their own website are more professional, less likely to be a fly-by-night company and have reliable customer service because they are more invested in their business.
The drawbacks of having a website are that they can be costly to develop and maintain. They can also take anywhere from one to six months to complete. However, there are many online services that allow for easier website design, development and hosting as long as the business owner has some graphic design and content writing skills, as well as time to learn the tool and a little bit of creativity in their blood.
What are the benefits and drawbacks of having a Facebook business page?
A benefit of having a Facebook business page is that it allows businesses to nurture their customers, giving them various touch-point opportunities throughout the buyer’s journey. Whether the consumer is in the awareness, consideration or decision stage, a Facebook page gives the business owner numerous tools to grow the relationship with the consumer, building trust and brand loyalty in the process. Sometimes, a simple post with a clever quote can serve as a friendly reminder about your business. You never know where the consumer may be in the buyer’s journey.
A Facebook business page also allows communities to grow organically, which is a huge plus for businesses in that it becomes the most valuable form of advertising — word-of-mouth. Once you get people talking about your business, and spreading your news for you, you know you are solid.
There are very few negatives of having a Facebook business page, however, some of them may include committing a lot of time to starting up and managing the page, as well as dedicating financial resources to develop graphics and content for the page. Paying for ads can also add up, but if you know how to use this tool wisely, it will help boost your business’ page.
This article was written by Robin D. Everson of Examiner.com for CBS Small Business Pulse.