I have been asked this question a million times, and I am sure a million times more are coming.  But my clients and others want to know, “Since we have a Facebook page, do we still need our web site?”  In a word, ABSOLUTELY!

Here are my top five reasons why:

  1. Five years ago we didn’t have access to Facebook as businesses.  When it started, it was only available to college students.  Ten years ago, Facebook didn’t even exist!  And who is to say that in ten years, Facebook will still be around?  It is almost a given that ten years from now there will be something new, so you will be moving on from Facebook anyway.
  2. Customization!  With your own web site, you have total control over what you can post, how it looks, and how users interact with your content.  Facebook is nice for connecting your business to your fans and followers.  But it can be very limiting, or at the very least challenging, to customize it.  That being said, you can do some pretty sophisticated stuff inside of Facebook, but it will require you to learn FBML, the language of Facebook, and that can be pretty daunting for someone that is not a programmer by trade.
  3. On your own site, you can sell products and services.  By having your products and services listed on your own site, your clients and customers can buy directly from you.  You can leverage  your site as a virtual storefront.  Facebook does not allow for direct sales to customers.  Of course, you can drive your fans from your Facebook page to your web store with nifty little buttons and things that look like they are part of Facebook.  But ultimately, the real work will be done by your company web site, not Facebook.
  4. Having your own site, along with your Facebook page, Twitter accounts, LinkedIN profiles, blog pages, Flickr and Youtube accounts, gives you more ways to be found on the internet. Having all of these entities on line and talking about your business, just allows your current and future customers to find you easier.  This is sometimes referred to a “Google Juice”.  The more ways that Google can find you and list you in their database, the better.  But keep in mind that all of the services that I listed above should still include a link back to your company web site.  I can’t stress enough how your web site needs to be the central hub that all of your other marketing efforts point back to.
  5. With your own web site, you will have your own “branded” address.  (ie. www.ampedupdigital.com)  Granted, it is getting harder and harder to find open domain names, but if you get creative, you still have a good chance at getting an address that ties to your business and helps build your brand.  With a Facebook page, you can get what is called a “vanity url” (ie. www.facebook.com/yourcompanyname), but only after you have twenty five (25) fans and IF it is available.  Having that vanity url on Facebook is great, and everyone with a Facebook page should get one if they can.  But, do you always want to be “advertising” for Facebook when you tell someone where to find more information on your products or services?

So in my opinion, yes, you still need a web site for your business.  ESPECIALLY if you are moving into the social media space for marketing.  Having your own home on the net, that matches your brand, and promotes your products and services, in an environment that  you control, makes the best central location for all of your digital marketing efforts.  The rest are just spokes on the wheel that help drive people to find out more about you, and your company.

As always, I welcome any thoughts, comments, or questions. Just post them in the space provided by clicking “Comments” below.