With approximately 250 million US consumers on the internet, it’s an absolute requirement for a business to have an online presence. Amidst this growth, some companies make the decision to forego a dedicated website in favor of a Facebook Page. While having any online presence is better than not having one, relying on Facebook to be your online business hub is a pretty bad idea.
6 Reasons Why You Still Need a Business Website
With all that said, following are six really good reasons why a Facebook Page should not be your primary online business presence. They’re all pretty important so they’re not listed in any particular order.
- You Don’t Own or Fully Control Your Facebook Page – Facebook owns it and, consequently, can make changes to the designs, layouts and policies at any time which can negatively impact your business presence. Because you don’t own the Page, there’s absolutely nothing you can do to stop Facebook from making these changes.
- Your Competitors Can Advertise on Facebook – How’s this for a scary scenario? Your customers can view advertising from your competitor while viewing your Facebook Page. As a matter of fact, your competitors can specifically target the kind of people visiting your Facebook Page based on their profile and browsing history. I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t put your competitors’ ads on your website so do you really want to funnel all your online traffic to a place that allows this?
- Search Engine Optimization – Search engines like Google place greater importance on having your own website for ranking in local search. While a business Facebook Page will show up, it generally won’t rank as highly or appear as early in search results. And since you don’t have control over everything that can affect your local search rankings for your Facebook Page, the results will likely never be as strong and might not even appear in search results you would consider highly relevant to your business.
- Poor Analytics – While Facebook Insights have improved and will probably continue to expand over time, the analytics aren’t nearly as good as what you can get from your own website. With your own website and a free Google Analytics account, for example, you receive far more information on your visitor traffic. While you don’t get names and addresses, you have access to an incredible amount of data including age, location, browser, operating system, pages viewed, where they came from, city, state and much, much more.
- Design Limitations – Facebook has limitations on what you can do from a design standpoint and it’s not always possible to present your company or your brand in the way you want. You’re limited in the size of key content areas and there are also restrictions on certain types of content and promotional opportunities. With your own website, you can publish what you want exactly how you want it.
- Audience Limitations – Not everyone is on social media networking sites. Depending on the source, research has found that anywhere from 30-45% of internet users in the US don’t use Facebook. While Facebook is a great way to add options to how consumers can interact with you, you may be eliminating almost half of your potential customers if you limit your business to only a Facebook Page.
A Facebook Page is Still a Good Idea
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying a Facebook Page is a bad idea. It’s a great complement to a dedicated website and a wonderful way to maintain contact with your consumers. I’d definitely recommend a Facebook Page in addition to your website and as a way to funnel even more traffic to your website.