I was recently asked to give my opinion/advice on the best method of an online presence for a small business and my response was a Facebook page and Google Business Listing. This was based on what I was told they would be working with as far as financial resources, technical knowledge, and time constraints. As it stands with pretty much everything in my life at this point, I began to ask myself how true my opinion is based on statistical facts…and so an article on my blog was born.
Upon my first search in the Google machine, all sorts of articles came up in the first page results about how a website is a must. But if you know me at all, then you know that I am hard-headed and not easily convinced – or impressed. With that said, I kept digging and composed a list of definite facts to strongly consider if you are the lucky person tasked with making this decision.
Here are some factors to consider:
Social Media Pros:
- Quick and free
Social Media Cons:
- Limited design
- Limited reporting tools
- Lack of ownership
- Full control
- Better marketing options
- Maintenance intensive
- Increased complexity
- More marketing effort
Take a minute to check out this article for a more in-depth look into these as well as more pros and cons to consider: http://smallbiztrends.com/2014/12/website-vs-social-media-profile-page.html
As for my two cents, we can only do what we can do – with the resources we have at our disposal. In a perfect world I would recommend that every business have a website and an account on every social media avenue available, and a department of well staffed & knowledgeable folks to maintain each of those. But here in the real world, most of us have limited resources – and only 24 hours in each day.
My proposed solution(s)? DIY tutorials for the small businesses, schools, non-profits, etc. that are willing to put in the work outlined to produce their own version of their web presence. The first course is ready for subscriptions at http://that-computer-girl.teachable.com/p/diy-school-web-site and will be ready this Spring 2017. I would love to hear your feedback, suggestions and requests as the design & development continues to be built. Although the initial course is for schools, you can easily adapt it to work for your business or non-profit organization. The main difference will initially be in the look & feel templates and themes provided with your subscription.
Everyone has their own two cents to add on this topic and I invite you to leave your comments/questions/concerns/rants below. If you are ready to get started, keep reading!
The first step is getting your domain name and hosting account setup, and since there are already a LOT of those out there so I won’t be clogging up the interwebs with yet another. Instead, here are my top 3 picks for getting started from “ground zero”:
- WPBeginner.com: How to Start a WordPress Blog the RIGHT Way
- WordPress Web Hosting Recommendations
- WP Explorer Getting Started with WordPress