I am often asked by entrepreneurs as they launch their new endeavors – if they should start a website of their own or setup a Facebook page instead. After all, a Facebook page is free and easy to create.
The best answer is BOTH. There are pros and cons to Facebook. Here are some of them:
Quick/Simple to Create
Instant “Presence” on Facebook
Can easily by “Liked” by other on Facebook for some social “juice” and visibility
Some people stay in the Facebook world and rarely leave it.
You are NOT in control. Facebook can change everything in an instant. They can change everything about your Facebook page if they want to. They can ban your page (and your entire account). They can plaster more advertisements all over your page. You can’t place things on your Facebook page where they get the best visibility for the best results.
Advertisements take traffic away from your page. Often, these advertisements may be from your direct competitors. So, while you have been spending your time building and nurturing your Facebook presence, the potential clients that you attracted to your fan page are ready to buy from one of your competitors and they went through your page to do it – all because you wanted to save a little time and money by using Facebook instead of setting up a website of your own.
With a website of your own, you are in total control. You can make it look like ANYTHING you want it to. You can make it do whatever you want it to. Also, you are not at the mercy of some other entity. You definitely want a website of your own.
When I talk with my website customers (or potential ones), they frequently decide to focus a lot of there effort on their Facebook page instead of their website. We build their website in ways that are most beneficial for their business. We track the results and make changes accordingly to make their business more profitable. Then, all of a sudden, when Facebook forces their business page to change to “timeline”, their plans are squashed and there have to learn the new system. They are at the mercy of Facebook. There are no negative surprises with their website. We continue to monitor and improve it.
Sometimes, it just takes a smack or two from Facebook for them to realize how valuable a well managed and tested website really is.