Facebook for Small Businesses - Another Dumpster Fire

Today I had the opportunity to speak to several small business owners who were very excited about using social media to get their brand name out to new clients and customers. Unfortunately, they had no idea that Facebook will not allow the Google search engine to crawl Facebook posts. I clearly explained that every single post that is updated on Facebook is limited to only Facebook users. The same is not true when it comes to Google+. Every single Google+ post that is created publicly will be indexed and crawled for anyone to see.

Facebook Cuts Its Nose to Spite Its Face

Years ago Facebook decided that it was going to be an all out war with Google. This was obviously not a very good decision. Mark Zuckerburg and his staff decided that they were going to close the walls around Facebook and not allow any search engine to crawl the state. Later, Facebook went into negotiations with Bing and the Bing search engine can now crawl all Facebook information. Fortunately for Google, very few people use Bing. Also fortunately for Google is the fact that they created their own social product to allow small businesses to benefit. When a small business goes on Facebook and creates a page that specific page is limited to only individuals on Facebook. Another issue with this is the fact that when that business creates a new post or update only certain users will see it because of the Facebook EdgeRank algorithm. Facebook continues to encourage businesses to pay to promote their posts. This is due to the fact that the posts are not showing up in the newsfeed for users because of EdgeRank. Facebook has been very strategic about slowly pulling these posts out of newsfeeds and charging businesses for them to show up. This has become a strategy for Facebook and many small businesses are simply pulling the plug. If you have to pay to reach the users you built you will likely be very upset. Fortunately, when creating a Google+ page you will be able to access every single one of these users no matter what type of post you publish as long as those users are in the specific circle.

Most Small Businesses Just Don't Know

At this meeting with small business owners I found out they were in shock when I told them that Google+ allows their businesses to reach out to a new audience. There were also in shock to find out that every single Google+ post is crawled and indexed in the search if it is posted publicly. This means that all of this valuable data can be found from individuals using the Google search engine. For anyone that may not know the Google search engine currently has about 67% of the market share. This is well above any of their competition and it seems to be the case that Bing and Yahoo! continue to take market share from each other. If the small business wants to reach a broader audience it makes sense that they would want to show up in search. Most small businesses provide a service or a product and they want people to search for that service or product. If all they are doing is posting to Facebook they are missing out on a huge audience that wants to spend money. It has been proven time and again that people on Facebook are not looking to spend money. They are looking to find cat pictures, baby pictures and play video games. I know there are some companies that probably make money on Facebook. These are few and far between and they are not long term business models. As I have stated many times in the past, if you are banking on Facebook creating your income you are skating on very thin ice. In fact, I will suggest creating a second source of income before Facebook pulls the plug and changes their ranking system to completely bankrupt your business. Facebook has been known to do anything possible to make money off their users so it should come as no surprise that they would change their system and it can hurt your small business.Facebook Don't Like button

There Are Alternatives to Facebook

Every single time I go to a major conference I find out that most people feel as if there were no alternatives to Facebook. Everyone is on Facebook right? No. It is not the case that everyone is on Facebook. In fact, many content creators and business professionals are on other social networks. LinkedIn is doing a very good job of building around business professionals and Google+ is full of content creators. If you do not believe me simply do a Google search for an area of interest and see how many pictures show up on the front page of Google search. All of those pictures that show up on the front page of Google search are individuals who have Google+ accounts. Many of these individuals are working very hard to build a personal profile so they are also very active on Google+. If you go on LinkedIn you will clearly find that there is a professional setting and there is no drama or playing of video games. LinkedIn is one of the few social media companies that has made a significant profit over the last several years. Just because the media says that everyone is on Facebook it does not mean that they actually are. If you have spent a significant amount of money advertising on Facebook and you are not getting a return on investment you might want to consider other options. I continue to say that Facebook is a dumpster fire as the stock spirals downhill. Facebook is doing anything possible to please investors. Unfortunately for users, they continue to make no money. This means that they are going to take every necessary step to make life miserable for those users.

Keep this in mind if you think your small business can benefit from this type of social media website.

   

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