Last week, I saw a poll online that asked the question, “Is it necessary to have a website, or is a presence on social media sufficient?”.
I thought the answer to this question was fairly obvious, but the responses were varied enough that I believe this question is worth asking again:
Is it necessary to have a website, or is a presence on social media sufficient?
Build your home on social media …
Some respondents said, in effect, that social media was so dominant today that it’s all any business really needs. These respondents argued that today’s customers and prospects don’t even bother looking at a business’ website anymore — they go straight to the business’ social media pages.
I think that’s true to a certain extent — buyers certainly do spend a great deal of time on social media and some social media platforms certainly do appeal to particular demographics and audiences out there.
Or build your home on the web …
However, I believe that your business’ website is just like your online storefront — it’s the first thing most people see when they go looking for you; the place they go to vet you and decide whether or not they’re going to engage with you.
Others who responded to the poll took my position a step further. They said, in effect, “Don’t build your home on someone else’s land.” In other words, what you build on social media belongs to the social media platforms; only your website belongs to you.
Don’t forget — your social media content lives online only at the pleasure of the social media platform — it could all go away overnight, or rules and policies could change that impact your visibility.
Your business’ website, on the other hand, is truly yours — as is your business’ domain name, assuming you have registered one.
Don’t build your home on someone else’s land.
So the scenario that makes the most sense is to build a solid foundation for your business online through a business website you can be proud of, and to use social media as a place to communicate with the fans of your business. Remember that your social media content (your posts, shares, videos, etc.) all reside on “rented space”!