Website Tips

Facebook Many F Panels System

Facebook Page or Business Website? Which is Better?

With the popularity of sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram more and more businesses are looking to social media to engage with their customers. Using a Facebook fan page or Twitter account can be an excellent strategy for customer engagement, marketing, and creating brand recognition.

Is Having a Facebook Page Better Than a Website?

These tools can seem like an easy, cost-effective method, especially for small businesses, but are they robust enough to replace a business website? To answer that question, let’s explore the pros and cons of a social media presence and how that compares to a company website.

Can Social Media Work for Business?

According to recent data from Statista.com, Facebook had 1.65 billion active users in the first quarter of 2016. With that many users, it is easy to see why a Facebook fan page has become an essential tool for reaching potential customers. Once created, a social media account provides small business owners with an easy outlet for engaging with these potential clients. However, reaching these shoppers on sites like Facebook can often be difficult.

Even consumers who have liked your page in the past may not see your content in their news feeds as Facebook often hides content that users don’t engage with frequently enough. Keeping your content front and center for customers often means paying to promote it, which means using social media effectively isn’t free.

The amount and wide variety of other content present on Facebook and other sites make it difficult to have your company’s content stand out. Your message can easily be lost when mixed in with updates from friends and family, content from groups and other fan pages, and paid advertisements.

Although site analytics make it clear how many users are interacting with your page and various content you’ve posted, other than paying to promote your post there isn’t a way to drive more users to your content. Because there are limitations on design, content, layout, and available information for your clients it can also be difficult to control your brand message on a Facebook fan page.

Websites Are a Superior Option

While a using Facebook or social media is easy, free to begin, and provides companies with a large pool of potential consumers to connect with, it cannot replace the benefits and structure of a business website. A site provides you with a dedicated place for your brand’s message, a professional appearance, and more focused information on the products and services you offer.

With a website, you can ensure that the look and feel of your content support the message your brand is presenting to those looking to do business with you. Far more customizable than a social networking page, you can show consumers exactly what you stand for as an organization.

Even in the small business realm, buyers expect a certain level of professional presence which can only be achieved by a dedicated company website. Customers are doing more research than ever before when it comes to making purchases. Exploring an organization online has become commonplace.

Without a business website, potential buyers may have concerns that the company isn’t established and trustworthy. Social media pages are too easy to fake and don’t contain as much information about the company as your site will. The professional image presented through a website helps assure clients they are dealing with an established organization that will meet their needs.

A professional site provides more information to shoppers than a social media page. You can include information about your organization, control marketing messages, drive brand recognition, and include point of sales opportunities. When customers can learn about your company, view your full schedule of offerings, easily contact you, and make purchases through your site, they will be more likely to do business with you.

Social Media is Not Enough

It may seem like harnessing the power of social networking is sufficient to make and keep your business competitive, but it is clear that a dedicated website is still essential to business success. Although the initial setup of a social media page is fast and easy, the right tools and support can make building and maintaining your site just as easy. Taking a combination approach by creating a website and linking it to social media will truly position your organization to reach the most consumers and maintain your brand message.

Build Your Own Website Tutorial

These step-by-step instructions will show you how to build your own WordPress website in no time at all.

 

Image Credit: PixaBay.co

 

road-sign-question-marks-faqs

Website Builders: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

When it comes to building a website, there are many options for you to choose from. One approach that has become popular is using website builders like Wix.com. This may seem like a dream come true if you do not have coding skills and need to get a site up quickly. Before jumping in, there are several factors to consider, which are explained below.

What a Website Builder Is

A website builder is a platform that offers hosting along with tools such as pre-made templates and a drag and drop editor. To get started, you sign up, choose a category for your site and begin building pages by placing elements on the templates. Most website builders are flexible enough to allow each page to have its own layout of text, photos and media.

Website Builder Advantages

Sites like wix.com offer site building tools and hosting as a complete, affordable package. If you do not have a lot of money or time to get a site going, a website builder is an excellent solution. As the site grows, there is a smooth upgrade process to add a custom domain and other features. You can get your personal or business site online fast, and it will look professionally designed.

Website Builder Disadvantages

Like anything else, using a website builder has a downside. The biggest disadvantage is the lock in. Website builders run on a special setup that makes it very difficult for you to move to another platform when the site becomes popular, or you simply want more control. In addition, running a site on a hosted service means you do not own the content. The platform can edit or delete your site at any time. A very ugly fact about wix.com is the inability to change the site’s theme once it is set. You are stuck with it forever.

Consider WordPress

WordPress is the world’s most popular content management system (CMS). Whether you need a company blog, static pages, photo galleries or a shopping cart, WordPress can do it all. A vast array of themes and plugins are only a few clicks away in the administrative area, and a large, supportive community is available if you need help.

What WordPress Can Do

Out of the box, WordPress gives you a slick default theme and superior search engine optimization (SEO). Even if you do not change a thing, your site will quickly index and start drawing traffic. Adding a premium theme that has further SEO tuning will give your site or business an even bigger boost. Many WordPress themes look as professional as the ones you would find on a website builder.

WordPress is Less Expensive

When you host your site on someone else’s platform, the costs start adding up as the site grows, and you need more custom services. A WordPress website scales gracefully and can run on just about any budget shared web host, keeping your money in your pocket where it belongs.

 

Responsive Web Design

Is Your Website Mobile Friendly?

Back on April 21, 2015, Google began penalizing websites that are not “Mobile Friendly”. This means that when someone uses Google to search for a product or service, the sites that can be viewed easily using a mobile device (i.e. cell phone or tablet) will be given preference over those that are not.

Listed below is the statement from Google

“Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.” ~ Google – You can read the full article here

I Still Don’t Get It

What this means to you as a business person/website owner, is that if your website isn’t mobile friendly then you’re going to lose out on traffic. Additionally, you will notice that your rankings in the search engines will slide, diminishing the amount of traffic you will receive.

Why are they doing this?

According to surveys, nearly 60% of all website visitors are viewing web pages on some type of mobile device. Based on this survey, the use of mobile devices has begun to outnumber desktop computers when it comes to searching for things on the Internet. Google is in the business of providing the best user experience to its users and is now taking steps to improve the search experience for cell phone and tablet users.

How Do I know if My Site is Mobile Friendly?

For starters, your website must be easily readable on a mobile device. This is according to Google, not you. Now you might think that your current website is OK, but if it needs to be resized or a searcher has to move it around on their device, then your site may not be considered mobile friendly.

An easy way to know if your website will pass Google’s inspection is to test it; using the following link: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly

This is the result that you want to see:

Google Mobile Friendly Test
If your site passes, then that’s great! It’s business as usual for you. But if your site does not pass, then you have some work to do.

So What Can You Do About This?

The simple fact of the matter is that you will need to fix your website. This can be accomplished in one of three ways:

  1. Make your website responsive
  2. Use dynamic content
  3. Maintain two sites, one for Desktop and Mobile

Why Not Create a Responsive Design?

The most logical change that you can make to your website is to make it responsive. A responsive (or flexible) design is the type of layout that is considered standard for most webmasters today. The benefit of this type of design is that it will automatically detect what type of device is being used and the layout will then adjust the design to fit accordingly, thus making your site easy to read on a PC, cell phone or tablet.

If you were to view your own website on your home computer and then on your smartphone or tablet you can easily see how the display changes. A responsive website only requires one design and one URL. This is probably the easiest method for making your website mobile friendly.  For a quick video explanation, check out my video about Responsive Design

Final Thoughts

You can hire someone to make the changes for you. There are several agencies (including ours) that will be more than willing to help you make your website mobile friendly. If working with an agency is not an option, then you can also do-it-yourself.  There are resources on the Internet to show you how.

For a copy of my D.I.Y. eBook The Importance of a Mobile Responsive Website use the sign up form in the sidebar to join our mailing list. You will receive a copy instantly when you have confirmed your subscription.

Need Help?

Not sure if you can accomplish this yourself? Then contact us.

Get WordPress Website & Internet Marketing Tips
in your inbox

Subscribe to our mailing list and get interesting stuff and updates to your email inbox.