Facebook Isn’t Enough: Why Your Business (Probably) Needs a Website
23rd October 2016
There’s a fairly popular school of thought that you may have heard about. That old chestnut about if your business has a Facebook page, then it doesn’t need a website.
But since when did websites and Facebook pages become interchangeable?
They really don’t fulfil the same function (or at least, they shouldn’t), so why do many people think that simply creating a Facebook page is enough?
Cost is the obvious answer. It costs nothing to set up a Facebook page, yet any halfway decent website will set you back some money.
It’s also much easier. Anybody can create a Facebook page in less than 5 minutes.
However social media is, by definition, meant for communicating with your customers and followers directly. It’s used for sharing timely information. Websites are meant to be a central hub of all your company’s online marketing efforts. A sort of one-stop shop, if you will.
When it comes to critical brand/company news, if Facebook is the messenger, the website should be the source.
Dynamic vs. Static
Facebook pages are dynamic by their nature. Chances are if you visit a Page tomorrow, it will appear quite different to how it does today (assuming the Page is fairly active). This means it can often be difficult to get specific information about the business at first glance. And sadly a glance is just about all the average person is willing to give you. When people can’t find what they’re looking for with the minimum of effort, best believe they will move on. Humans are busy and fickle beings!
“Remember, Facebook isn’t used by everyone, and sometimes access is blocked”
Websites, on the other hand, are much more static. Sure, websites get updated, but not nearly as frequently as a Facebook Page. This makes them ideal for housing information that generally does not change, such as the location, description of services offered, photos of the main building, etc.
There’s also the small matter of accessibility. Remember, Facebook isn’t used by everyone, and sometimes access is blocked (such as in the workplace).
Get With The Times
I don’t know about you, but in 2016 I pretty much expect a business to have a website. And not just any website, but something modern with all the trappings of something designed and built within the 21st Century.
A website lends an air of authenticity and professionalism. Without a website, your business can appear antiquated and behind the times, especially if your competition has one. Imagine this scenario: a potential customer is looking for a particular product that both Company A and Company B sell. They jump online and after a brief search, they find said item on Company B’s website. Meanwhile, Company A does not have a website. Where do you think Mr. Customer is going to spend their money?
Things to Consider
If you decide that it is indeed worth your while to invest in a website, there are a few things you should think about before jumping in:
- A website truly is an investment. Think of it like buying a car. You still have to spend money on gas, maintenance, insurance, repairs, etc. Similarly, with a website you need to think about maintenance fees, security costs, hosting and domain name renewal, regular backups, and so on. Luckily, many web developers can offer all of these services in a package deal that you can pay per month or annually.
- Your site needs (I repeat, needs) to be mobile-friendly/responsive. Essentially, this means your site should scale appropriately to whatever size screen is being used to view it. Reasons for this include that an estimated 60% of internet access is mostly mobile (as of 2014), and that Google will actively punish you with decreased search engine ranking if your site is not mobile-ready. Here at Red82 Creative, I insist that any website we create must be mobile-friendly as a rule. Nobody wants to visit a website on their smartphone and have to constantly zoom in and scroll around just to view the content! A handy tool to test for mobile-friendliness is Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test.
I may be ever so slightly biased considering that I create websites for a living, but it just makes so much sense to have a website for so many reasons.
Does your business or the company you work for have a website? What do you think of it? If there isn’t one, why is that? Do you think it may be beneficial to have one developed?