Facebook versus Website?

“I’m thinking about abandoning my website and just doing my Facebook page. It’s so easy plus I can add pictures, videos, and do just about everything else my website does. Why do I need a website? Do you think I could just go with Facebook?”

Has that thought ever crossed your Mind?

No, you can’t just do Facebook. Facebook is supplemental to your website. Here are 3 reasons why:

  1. You have no control over Facebook. It’s a *free* service that they are providing for you to use *for free* at their pleasure and which could be changed, taken away, or any number of other nasty things at any given point. Without notice. You do not own your Facebook page.You should not put your complete online business presence in the hands of any entity you have NO control over. Really, there’s no need to add any other reasons to this list – this reason alone should be enough to convince you.
  2. Your website brands you, your Facebook page brands Facebook. Your colors, your style, your logo – you can totally customize for your brand on your website. Facebook does allow some customized pages and images, but overall the site still looks like Facebook. Not you.Your website should be a mini representation of your in-store experience online. And you can’t really do that with Facebook.
  3. People searching the web for your store or your products won’t easily find what they’re looking for on Facebook. What most visitors are looking for from your website is your telephone number, your store hours, your address, or your product mix.Yes, you can put all that on the info tab of your Facebook page. But it’s not in an easy to find, easy to see format on every page. If visitors have to search, they’ll just go somewhere easier.

Facebook and your website are two different, albeit related, marketing tools.

What about Facebook’s limitations? Limitations!? Yes, even the 4th most powerful website in the world has limitations. And the limitations for Facebook don’t exist on your website where you can break apart you content into multiple, easy-to-use pieces in the way that promotes *your* brand. Facebook isn’t just a checkbox feature, nor is it a magic bullet. You don’t want to be a faceless brand – regular Facebook users are too savvy to spend time on a static, boring Facebook page. Your website will always compete with other websites for viewers, but on Facebook you’re competing within the same space.
To stand out you have to have an active presence that offers interesting, sharable information & an on-going conversation. Also, design-wise, you don’t have lots of room to play. Facebook limits the width of your Page content to just 520 pixels wide. That’s not very much.

  • So not only is the space in which you have to promote your content severely limited, Facebook controls it and can change it at any time. With your website, sure you need to optimize above-the-fold, but you can create a great user experience throughout that you completely control.
  • What about a Website’s limitations? Unless you’re using an existing template-based approach, custom well-designed websites take a specific set of skills & usually more than an afternoon of work.  Creating a page on Facebook, by comparison, is super fast, easy, and anyone can do it.  Using a Content Management System (CMS), like WordPress, will give anyone the ability to create and update their own website or blog, but it’s still not as easy as posting something to a Facebook page and participate in the ensuing conversation.  And without promotion, even the best-designed website, optimized for search engines will float on the internet like an island unless you market it through ads or social media, etc..  Facebook, meanwhile, is built for sharing, and includes a built-in search feature.

So to summarize: In my Opinion a Facebook Page can be a useful Addition to your marketing strategy but could NEVER EVER replace a well thought about Website.