Online marketing and social media tips for business from Shannon Belew, best-selling author of "Starting an Online Business For Dummies, All-in-One"
When businesses set up a promotional Facebook Page, the emphasis often becomes driving traffic (or Likes and Fans) to your Facebook page. But, Facebook is really like any other marketing tool that you have; and it should serve a purpose that helps grow your primary business. Unfortunately, many businesses overlook a simple part of their Facebook page that interferes with a very important transactional goal. The good news is that there are a few simple tricks to reverse the trend and get to your ultimate transactional goal.
In this case, the term “transactional goal” refers to a specific action. As with any other tool or online campaign, you have to ask “what do I want people to do?” Or, “what action should a visitor take?” If you have a website as part of your primary business (where you are selling something), you should ultimately want people to make their way to that site and make a purchase. Seems simple, right? So, how is it that Facebook has redirected our attention and efforts to building fans, or traffic, to a Facebook page?
Facebook gives you the opportunity to reach millions of potential customers in a pretty low-cost, effective way. That’s definitely a good thing. Your Facebook page is also a great way to have conversations with your customers about your company and to spread the word about special promotions, new products, company news, and more. That’s good, too. But, when setting up your page, there’s often a very simple missed opportunity: Linking to your website.
How many times have you followed a friend’s recommendation or comment and checked out the Facebook page of a company you didn’t know? Have you ever clicked on an enticing Facebook ad and then ended up “liking” a page to enter a contest or because you want to become part of the social community for that brand? And, how many times have you wanted to visit the website of the brand that’s featured on the Facebook page – but it takes a while to find a URL?
It can be surprisingly difficult to find the website address of a business from their Facebook page. By the way, the reverse problem certainly isn’t true. As a business, you go out of your way to put Facebook icons and “Like Us” and “share” buttons all over your website. For some reason, Facebook has become the destination page instead of the tool to get to the ultimate transactional goal.
Here are 3 easy ways to remedy this overlooked marketing opportunity:
To do this, simply add the URL in the comment box under the picture. You can do this at the time you upload the profile picture, of at a later time by going to “Photos” and clicking on your profile picture. What happens if the URL is not part of the comments for that profile picture? When a visitor clicks the image, it pulls up a page with the same image on it – but no additional information. When the URL is added, a visitor will see the link and can click it to go directly to your website (or any specific page of your site).
Most people do include their website address in the About section of a Facebook page, but it’s usually buried deep in the description. Only part of that description actually shows in the left sidebar of your Facebook page, so you want to use this space wisely. If you have a long URL, you can use a tool (like Bitly) to shorten your URL and allow it to fit better on the page.
3. Add links to specific website pages in your comments on the wall of your page. Seems obvious, but doesn’t hurt to remind you that when it’s appropriate, your comments and pictures should include links back to your website, such as product pages. You don’t want constantly push your products on people, but when featuring a product, why not make it easy for people to find it on your site – instead of having to dig on your Facebook page for a link?