Your Website Is More Powerful Than You Know!
With all the social media platforms around today its easy to neglect your website in favour of the endorphin hit of instant likes, shares and comments. And not for one minute am I suggesting you abandon your social media strategy. I am suggesting you should rethink it if you are not already including your website as part of the mix. In fact, it should be the centre of the mix.
Your website is more powerful than you are probably giving it credit for. And it's struggling because you are probably ignoring it.
Why You Shouldn't Put Your Socials Before Your Website
Yes, I know all the cool kids are on the latest social platform. Yes, I know they are all selling you courses on how they built a 6 figure income in just 6 months. (Really? Only six figures?!) But what happens to their strategy when the rules change, or the platform shuts down their page, or the algorithm is updated, etc? Oh, and where do you go to sign up for this course, or buy those cool candles? A website? Hmm...
And that brings me to the first reason:
You Don't Own it, You Don't Control It
You have no stake in the social media platforms you are using. You have no say in the direction they take. You don't get to set the layout, the rules, or the algorithm, or well... anything really. You have as it turns out, very little control at all! It's a tool, a very cool tool, but it's not one that you own. It's one you have on loan.
Facebook proved this in rather compelling fashion recently when it pulled the plug on all news related pages on its platform in Australia. Literally overnight their pages were taken offline. Their content was gone! Bye bye marketing strategy!
Likes Are Not Revenue
Having 100,000 followers is really nice. But if they are following and not buying then it is pure and simply a vanity exercise! Like I said, don't abandon your socials. Make sure you are using them to channel your followers to your website where you can turn them into subscribers, customers, callers, etc. Get them into your ecosystem!
It's Fleeting and it's Unpredictable!
It's deflating when you put out a post on socials and you come back 6 hours later and the reach is something like 20 people. You've got 30,000 followers damn it! WTF!
An awesome post, and no one saw it! Welcome to social media!
Now, if that same information is in a post on your website, it is adding to your indexable, searchable content. You can still use it on your socials, but it is not lost after the first couple of hours. In fact, its value grows over time as you add to it with more posts. See this post: One Simple Step To Improve Your Website Visibility
Its a time suck!
For me it's a question of priorities. It's too darn easy to get sucked into the social media time drain once you jump on the platform. You hit publish on your post and then start scrolling, or checking to see if your post is performing, etc. Wow, that cat video is so darn funny. Oh look, there's a post from my friend... So, when using socials be really aware you are getting a return on the investment of your time.
I did an analysis for a client a few years ago. They spent at least an hour a day, sometimes more, on their social media. When we analysed the traffic to their website, which is where the real business was done, it accounted for 0.04% of all traffic to the site. This was a small business, with a handful of employees. But here they are spending over 10-20 percent of someone's day on it. A very low ROI.
Needless to say we switched focus and began updating the content on their website and making sure it was optimised for their ideal clients to find. Their search engine ranking improved, and so did the bottom line!
So, Why Is Focusing On Your Website a Better Strategy?
Fair question. Remember, I'm not suggesting you abandon your social media strategy. I'm suggesting you change it to a more website centric approach.
There are probably exceptions, but most of the small businesses I deal with end up doing the business end of transactions on their website. It's where you want people to end up so they can make contact with you directly. Yes I know they can do that from your socials too, some more easily than others, but you don't own that! I've mentioned that Im sure?!
So, here are a few reasons to focus on your website first.
It's Adding To Your Search Engine Optimisation
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is one of those areas that is packaged as black magic by the industry. Seriously, it's not. It's really about creating content that is directed at your customers and relates to the sorts of things they search for online.
You sell red widgets, and you write information pages and blog posts about your red widgets and why they are the best red widgets on the market. You write this information in a way that it addresses all the questions your customers are likely to ask. And guess what? Eventually it starts to hit the target. You write enough that your information becomes relevant to search engines and they start showing it in the search results. Even if you do it badly, content volume will eventually win the day.
But, it's even better if you do it well. We'll address this in another post 🙂
You probably Get Most Of Your Business From Search Engines, Direct Traffic or Referral Anyway!
As in my early example of the client who had 0.04% of all traffic from social media, it's likely you get most of your enquiries as a result of searches. So it makes sense that you put effort into the area where most of your revenue is generated online.
Of course, if you only have an Instagram presence, then yes of course that's where most of it will come from, but it begs the question, are you short changing yourself and missing the big picture by not having a website?
Do some analysis of your traffic and if possible where that traffic leads to sales. Ask your customers how they found you. In short, make sure you aren't putting excess energy into a small return on investment.
If you get a fair bit of referral business, there'a a very good chance the first place they'll go to check you out is your website too. So, you really want your content there!
You Can Offer More in An Organised Fashion
Once on your web page you can offer more. You can consolidate all your socials into a feed on a socials page. You can embed your YouTube videos in a video gallery. You can offer exclusive discounts to people who subscribe to your email signup. You can put all your how-to videos, brochures, installation manuals, etc in an easy to access library. All your services can be outlined in detail. You can provide multiple contact options, etc.
Bottom line, you are now in control of where the information goes, who can see it, etc. You are in control!
Credibility and Peace of Mind
With a website you can provide multiple layers of credibility, from testimonials to team pages. Articles that provide valuable information to potential and existing customers alike that establish you as the expert in your area. And it's all there in one place and (hopefully) easy to find.
Full address details and contact options give consumers peace of mind that you are a real business and not just another instant Instagram expert. In the end, even if you get interest via socials, most people will probably head to your site for evidence that you can do what your snappy on point social media post promised anyway. And here, you'll either win them, or lose them!
Your Content is More Expansive and Reusable
Every bit of content you create for your website will spawn any number of social media posts. And the beauty of having already created it for your website is that as soon as you post it on your socials you can also point to a more complete article on the subject on your website. Now they are in your ecosystem and not scrolling to the next cat picture. Nice!
All ideas grow out of other ideas - Anish Kapoor
The discipline of writing one post for your website will generate ideas for more posts, more social media, more ideas for all sorts of things! Ideas are contagious! The more posts, the more ideas. So really, writing posts for your blog is also ground work for your social media posts.
Have I Mentioned That You Own It?!
I'm sure I have. It's not less true for repetition! You own it, you control it, you get to determine the layout, etc. Here, you are the master!
All Roads Lead to Home!
In conclusion I'd like you to think of everything you do in your social media as an opportunity to drive potential customers to your website. It's probably where they'll end up anyway if they want to do business with you, and that's the key isn't it? If they don't want to do business, they're just window shopping.
So, even if your social media is kicking goals, and you're getting a full on high from the endorphin rush of all those likes and comments, make sure driving people to your website is the ultimate goal. All roads lead to home!
CEO - Rough Diamond Academy
For over 21 years David has been building websites for clients. In 2013 he pivoted from running a web design agency to working hands on with clients to help them build their businesses by reaching their ideal clients. Going beyond the website. The experience of working at the coal face is the foundation of The Rough Diamond Academy. Real life experience for real life businesses. It starts with building a site, but that's only the beginning!