Trying to build more traffic to your site? Maybe you should consider setting up a Facebook fan page. Before you say that Facebook is a waste of time or start complaining about the amount of work involved, take a look at this list of reasons and see if you don't find them compelling.
I found these points in a blog entry by Jennifer Horowitz (http://www.searchenginejournal.com/5-reasons-to-create-a-facebook-fan-page-and-5-reasons-not-to/27922/) that appeared on Search Engine Journal. You may already have a personal Facebook page, and you might see little point to the site. But 500 million people already use Facebook, and that number keeps growing. If you built a website in part because so many people are online, well, you can use that same argument with Facebook.
In fact, if it's traffic you're looking for, you really need a Facebook fan page. When done right, such pages get indexed by Google and show up on the search engine results pages often. Not everyone goes to Google when they're looking for a product or service anymore; some people search on Facebook. Horowitz notes that these Facebook users look for pages that other people “like,” because then it feels a little more like a personal recommendation. In this way, you can get the word-of-mouth effect working for you – the most effective form of advertising.
You also really need a Facebook fan page if your competitors have one. Why? I just mentioned the kind of traffic you can get with one. If you're not there and your rivals are, they're getting customers that you're not reaching. That's no way to stay in business.
But you say you're more traditional, and want to stick with the SEO you're used to, which involves raising the standings of your company's website in the search engines. Fine. Two months ago, both Google and Bing said that Twitter and Facebook affect site rankings. Now what's your excuse?
Do you want another reason to build a Facebook fan page? How about the ability to directly engage with your potential customers? When you run a website and your business is online, it's hard to provide the personal touch. That's what social media like Facebook is all about, however. If you want to build your company's credibility and inspire trust, a Facebook fan page can help. It gives you a chance to show visitors that there's a human face behind your site – and people prefer to do business with other people, not faceless firms.
Maybe you're resisting getting a Facebook fan page for your online business because you're a bit of a Luddite. That's no excuse. In fact, according to Horowitz, “you need to stay current (if not ahead) of the trends if you want to survive in an online business and ignoring what has clearly become an important strategy is just like waving a white surrender flag for your site.” This is especially true if you're using other excuses for not creating a Facebook fan page: because you don't like Facebook, you don't know how to create a Facebook fan page, or because you figure it will be too much work to reply to comments and keep the page current.
Yes, of course it will be work, but that's true of any business, and an online business is no exception. It's very easy to create a Facebook fan page; there are tools that can help you build one, and services that will do it for you. And as far as not liking Facebook, well, we all do things we don't like to get what we want; if someone told you that working online meant you'd never have to do something you didn't enjoy for work again, I'm sorry to say you've been misinformed. Besides, interacting with customers on a Facebook fan page is rather different from the more run-of-the-mill ways of using Facebook. So give it a try. You might like it after all...especially when you see how good it can be for your bottom line. Good luck!
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