Tips for Business Websites: Do I Need Social Media?

By now, almost everyone knows the term “social media.” You’re likely using it in your day-to-day life in the form of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and more. Social media can be an incredible tool for encouraging interaction with your brand, increasing return visitors and building search engine traction. While the upsides are numerous, the downsides of integrating social profiles with your website are sometimes overlooked.

downsides to social media for businesses:

  • Many businesses block social media sites on their networks as part of their internal office policy. If you are marketing to other businesses, this is definitely something to consider. Look into your target audience to see if there are external factors that may limit effectiveness. In these instances, a blog approach may be a better bet.
  • They require continual interaction by you to keep them current. Social media is named such because it is “social”. Many site owners don’t realize the time commitment this can generate. For the full benefits of social media integration to be realized, you have to be fully dedicated.
  • Social media plugins can allow external content to be posted to your site, depending on how you have implemented it. Usually this is in form of comments that are not content filtered. If you are concerned about what is said on your site, you’ll want to avoid plugins which display social comments on your site.
  • Leveraging social media means more of your content is located on outside sites, rather than your own. Some plugins and tools allow a user to comment and interact on your site, while the data is actually on the service’s site. There are pluses and minuses to this, so take the time to understand where the data exists and if that fits your needs.
  • Much of the technology is still evolving at a rapid pace, and in some cases, is not standardized. Some code may need to be upgraded or replaced in a short period of time. If you have the budget or in-house staff to handle these updates, this is probably not something you need to be concerned about. If you are a small one-man-show with little free time you will want to weigh the options.

All that said, when social media is paired with the right website and strategies, it is a very valuable and effective marketing tool. If you have further questions regarding social media for your business, we can help.