Facebook Page or Website?

Question For Google Places

There are a bunch of websites and consultants advising that companies skip a website in favor of a Facebook Page.

But it’s a really bad idea.

You should have a Facebook Page, and a basic one can be put together in just a few minutes. But this can’t substitute for your real home on the web.

Why You Need a Website

Ownership

The first problem with using a Facebook Page instead of a website is that it will never really be yours. Facebook regularly does redesigns and changes its policies – and there’s nothing to stop the company from making a change that hurts your business.

Cupcake Living Social Facebook Ad

A Facebook Ad

Plus Facebook runs ads alongside your Page. And if savvy marketers are targeting the right people, these ads might be for your direct competition. Do you really want your only home on the web to be pushing other products alongside your own?

Search

Google has changed their local search algorithm – increasing the importance of having a website for ranking in local search. Although you can link to a Facebook Page as your website (particularly if you’ve pointed your own domain at your Facebook Page), you don’t have control over everything that can affect your local search rankings.

Huge Sitelinks

Huge Sitelinks

Another advantage to having a website is that both it and your Facebook Page can show up in the search rankings. This helps you fill the search listings with sites that you largely control, which is a great reputation management strategy. With the huge sitelinks that Google sometimes provides, a website has even more ability to dominate the search results for your name.

Conversion Rate

You can design a website any way you like, putting information/pictures in the right places, and including a very prominent contact form and phone number to help potential customers get in touch. Plus there are no distractions – such as the notifications and ads that are ever-present in the Facebook interface.

Your goal is to get people buying, and for the above reasons your website is probably the best place to make that happen. If you sell a service consumed in social settings (a bar, for example), this may not be as true – but if that’s the case, you can always link to Facebook and use the company’s social widgets.

Websites Aren’t Hard

My final reason to suggest creating a website is that it really isn’t that hard. There are so many great tools out there, almost anyone can create a site for free.

If that still seems like too much, help doesn’t have to be expensive. Mine is one of many companies that will build an inexpensive business website (and that’s not a big source of bias for this article – I’ll happily help you market on Facebook as well).

Conclusion

There are a lot of reasons to create a Facebook Page – and your business almost definitely should. But to think that this removes the need for a website is a mistake. Put in the effort to build both, and your business will thank you.

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Need help? Small Business Shift provides website and online marketing services.

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About Chris Piepho

Chris is the founder of Small Business Shift. You can learn more about him here. If you would like to work with Chris, please get in touch.

33 Responses to “Facebook Page or Website?”

  1. Peter Hales November 10, 2011 at 11:07 pm #

    Great post. I’ve talked a lot about the importance of having a social media presence; you should be where the people are, after all. But, having a website is crucial. How awful would it be to login to FB and see either the rules or EdgeRank have been changed and as a result, your page/business is a casualty?

  2. Azunga January 24, 2012 at 5:23 am #

    Exactly. This article couldn’t have been better written! The points brought up are the exact same ones I tell any one I meet why a Facebook page (or Twitter account) will never be the same as having your own website.

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