Social Media Should Complement, Not Replace A Dedicated Business Website
A dedicated business website allows your company to have complete control over everything from data collected on each customer that makes a purchase to the way in which products are featured in your digital storefront; moreover, a dedicated website provides you with the tools you need to build an online audience on your own terms. This provides you with freedom from the social media platforms and ensures that you don't ever lose access to vital information about how to market your business online.
Why You Cannot Rely On Social Media To Run Your Business
Social media platforms offer numerous benefits to businesses, including targeted marketing opportunities to potential consumers and a way to communicate company values and messaging; however, because of the many tools that many of the major platforms offer, some businesses make the costly mistake of opting for a social media account in place of a dedicated business website.
Consider these five key reasons as to why you should never rely solely on social media in place of a dedicated company website.
1. Social Media Companies Make Their Own Rules
When it comes to social media, you are at the mercy of the platform in question. Social media companies make their own rules, and the approach they choose may not align with what works best for your business. After all, thousands of businesses use social media to market their goods and services. As a result, the platforms are not beholden to any one industry, and they focus on meeting their own needs before anyone else's.
In addition, things can change without your knowledge, and you can lose all of the connections you have formed with potential consumers before you even know what happened. Your digital footprint is in a precarious position when relying solely on social media in place of a website.
A dedicated business website allows you to control your connections with consumers, and it ensures that you operate by your own rules. The best part is that you can still sell and market your products and services through your social media channels, while also funneling customers back to your own website so that you can capture data on each one.
Social media companies are interested in their own corporate bottom lines. This means that while you may have access to certain features one day, the company may decide that you no longer have those tools at your disposal the next. These platforms are understandably most interested in their own success, which makes relying on them as your sole means of digital representation a risky endeavor.
2. Dedicated Business Websites Provide You with Important Consumer Data
Data is one of the most important resources your business can have in the technology age. Everything from who patronizes your business to the types of products and services in which they are interested matters in terms of the way you market your business. This information can enhance your efforts in every area of business operations, which is one of the reasons that data is so valuable.
A dedicated business website provides you with all of the pertinent information you need on your customers and more. While you can capture some of it via social media, these platforms control the bulk of big data associated with your business pages. They typically use it for their own purposes; however, with your own website, all of the data you need for marketing purposes is in your hands. This allows you to tailor the website experience for your consumers and to engage them and guarantee return visits.
You can learn a great deal about customer behaviors when you have a dedicated website. This includes information about when customers are most likely to shop your website, what pages they stay on the longest, and how often they click through your content.
The more you can engage consumers on your own website, the more you can get them to engage with your brand. This is more likely to equate in sales for your company, and it underscores the benefit that you have in relying on more than just your social media platforms for marketing purposes.
3. Your Own Website Equals Creative Freedom
Your own website equals creative freedom when it comes to the way that you market your company's products and services. A dedicated website is like a blank canvas for your company. It allows you to include whatever creative ideas you want to make your products look more appealing.
Social media platforms only offer limited templates to make your business stand out from the others. While the major companies allow you to sell your products and services right from your social media platform, the creative aspect of these platforms leaves something to be desired.
With a dedicated website, you can ensure that it looks exactly the way you wish. You can incorporate live chat features, online purchasing options, blogs, and a myriad of other things to better communicate with potential customers.
Most importantly, you can optimize your dedicated website so that customers find you easily in online searches. This is important because not every potential customer will even have a social media account. If your website ranks in online searches, those looking for what you have to offer are more likely to find your website and check it out. The first page in the online search rankings is the most sought-after location in the digital world. How much money could you be leaving on the table but not residing there?
4. Consumers Will Always Know Where to Find You
Social media platforms are always evolving, and the one that is most popular today may not be the most in-demand option weeks from now. When you have a dedicated business website, consumers always know where to find you. Your domain name provides a digital anchor for your business so that the products and services offered by your company are found in the same place each and every time.
Social media cannot offer this kind of longevity and consistency because the major platforms were not made for other businesses. They were made to keep your attention focused solely on the platform. While tech companies have found a way for businesses to benefit from the use of social media to connect with consumers and exemplify corporate values, this is not their intended purpose. They simply cannot offer you all the necessary resources that a dedicated website can to help advance your brand’s vision and goals.
Social media platforms are always changing in terms of target markets and user types. For example, when Facebook first launched, their target audience was college-aged users. If your a business targeting this demographic, imagine investing all of your time, money and effort into building your business Facebook page only to find out that your target market almost entirely disappeared when this demographic moved on to other platforms like Snapchat and Instagram.
The reality is that social media platforms have too many fluctuations with targeted demographics. This means that your company may never really find a home on one of these platforms because they are constantly evolving. While you certainly want your own business to evolve, consistency in terms of your website's presence is paramount so that your customers always know where to find you.
5. Social Media Platforms Are Best Used as Tools to Complement Your Website
The truth is that social media can bring a lot of value to your business. The various platforms provide you with an opportunity to intimately connect with your brand's consumers. In addition, each of the platforms have unique features that your business can utilize.
For instance, Instagram is a photo and video sharing platform that allows you to show off the products offered by your business in an aesthetically pleasing way. Facebook facilitates conversation with consumers, while Twitter provides a chance to form industry connections and join in on trending topics.
All of these platforms are strongest when used as a complement to your website. In taking this approach, it ensures that you don't rely too heavily on any one platform, and instead spread your resources around to all of them while still channeling the bulk of your energy into your own website.
A dedicated business website ensures that your consumers can access the products or services that are offered by your company at any given time. It also protects you from being at the mercy of changing policies and algorithms from social media platforms.
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