It amazes me how many companies do not have websites -- or have essentially ignored their website -- and have focused their efforts on building a Facebook business page. I'm constantly finding businesses that they need to either create a website or put more emphasis on what they've got.
Whether it's a simple, two or three-page website or an elaborate site including a blog, your company needs to have a website as an asset that you own, in addition to a Facebook page.
So I've put together six reasons you need to have your own website as your primary online presence.
6 Reasons Your Business Needs a Website
- You have better control of how you appear in search results
- More control over tracking your results
- You need somewhere to link paid ads
- Not everyone is a Facebook user
- Show off your style
- Your website is considered more credible
Let's be clear, we are by no means suggesting that you take your business off of Facebook or social media. In fact, we suggest that you tailor your social media marketing to your specific target audience. Learn more about which social media platforms are best for your business in 2020.
1. You Lose Control on FACEBOOK
My number one reason was actually spotlighted within the last two weeks when Facebook posted a statement regarding their future plans. In the upcoming months, they will focus on their original mission which was bringing people closer together. It seems that most users have spoken, and they don't enjoy seeing page posts and advertisements over their friend's and families' updates on their timelines. What does this mean for your Facebook page? Well, likely the small percentage of your followers that are still seeing your Facebook page posts, won't be seeing it at all in the future.
2. What Results?
A big, ongoing issue that we have with Facebook is the stats and results that they provide. These results can be tricky, making it harder to show lead generation results that you may be getting from your Facebook business page. With a website, you have so much more access to your data and results.
3. You need a Destination for Google ads
Even if you don't think you will need to run pay per click ads, I tell my clients to always be prepared and set-up to successfully run paid ads. You might change your mind, and then you have what you need to turn them on quickly. You can technically link Google Ads to a Facebook page, but it's definitely discouraged for many reasons, such as:
- Historically lower ad quality scores for Facebook landing pages which can increase your cost per click
- Google often limits how many ads for a top-level domain (such as Facebook) will show in the results. If you have a few competitors aiming for the same phrases, your ad could be left out.
- Facebook trademark violations are possible.
- You can't use Google Ads conversion tracking to see the results of your Google Ads investment.
- You must be logged into Facebook to see the content of most Facebook pages.
4. Barrier to entry
Not everyone has a Facebook account. Especially since the younger generations are decreasingly using Facebook. In September 2018, it was estimated that 44% of young millennials (aged 18-29) have unfriended Facebook, and studies have shown that Gen Z will probably kill Facebook.
I have a 22-year-old sister that refuses to use the social media platform at all, and this is pretty common for the 18-24 year age range. But, it's not only the younger crowd... 59% of the 65 and older age group are present on Facebook. This means that if someone has to sign in to a platform that they aren't familiar with (or don't have a log-in for) you've instantly lost them.
5. Show off your style
Gone are the days of customizing your MySpace page, and honestly, I don't know about you but I don't want to go back there. So since you can no longer customize social media platforms complete with Mariah Carey's "We Belong Together" playing in the background, it's better to have your own website that shows off your style and your product.
Whether you are a serious accounting firm, a creative sign shop, or a homey coffee shop, with your own website you can give visitors a sense of your business before they even step through the doors of your physical location or receive your product.
For years, studies have shown that a good website instantly adds perceived value or credibility to products and services. I know I want to be able to go to a website, find what I'm looking for, learn about the company, and see what they are all about.
A Major Purchase Shopper Study by GE Capital Retail Bank revealed that 81% of shoppers do online research before making a purchase, with 60% going directly to the retailer's website to check out various product details; such as warranty, pricing, availability, and shipping information. A standard Facebook page that looks like everyone else's Facebook page doesn't give me a good idea of what your company is about, or make it easy to find information that I might be searching for before purchasing your product or service.
Again - I'm not telling you to get rid of your Facebook page; after all, there are 2.27 billion active Facebook accounts. By all means, keep your Facebook page live, active, and part of your social media strategy until we get the final word on what we can expect the future of our Facebook business pages to be. Just ensure that you have a strong social media presence in the platforms that you choose to participate in.
However, you should not be putting all of your metaphorical-online-presence eggs into one big blue and white Facebook-colored basket. You need to have a website that you control, contains content that you own (when you post it on Facebook they get the credit with the search engines, not you), and is specifically dedicated to helping you grow your online presence and your business for the future.
Bottom line: Every business needs its own website. And it should do more than simply show the world that you exist. Be sure it supports your values, showcases your company culture, and helps you reach your company's sales goals.
Originally published January 2018. Updated August 2020.