A recent CNET article by Stephen Shankland entitled, “Will Facebook replace company Web sites?” offered Facebook’s hope that brand-customer interactions continue to move to their platform and away from traditional web sites.

Advantages to Facebook Pages

It is tempting to launch a new brand with only a Facebook Page, particularly when targeting the women under-30 demographic. Facebook Pages are fast and easy to set up and content is dynamic.It’s easy to create a new offer or coupon every day. Buying new leads is a snap with Facebook ads.¬†For some consumer brands, starting with a Facebook page might not be a bad strategy.

Not So Fast

There are several good reasons to have a web site in addition to a Facebook Page, however. Regardless of your target market.

  • Ownership. You don’t control the Facebook platform, and it changes without warning or documentation. Plus, Facebook has the ability to take down your Page at will
  • Platform Resistance. There is a sizeable number of consumers who are highly resistant to Facebook and simply will not use it. The number of consumers who refuse to use the web is much smaller.
  • Purpose. Facebook is designed to offer short, dynamic bursts of content designed for social interaction or surface-level information – like an electronic brochure. Your company website is your solid, stable presence on the web that offers consumers more of a long and deep view into the company and its history – like an electronic users manual.

In the comments of the article that prompted this post, someone said that a company’s web site is like the back room of a library, and Facebook is like reception. I like that analogy. Two parts of a well functioning system, with two different purposes.

Ok, so, your turn. Have you decided to forgo a web site in lieu of a kick-ass Facebook Page? Or, on the flip-side, maybe you have decided against locating your brand on Facebook altogether. Let us know in comments what works for you.

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