Facebook is the most widely-used social media platform in the world. With almost two billion users, it has an audience that’s too large for any business to ignore, yet few understand its value as a business tool. Most business pages are static and rarely updated, and that’s assuming they exist at all. If a business creates and runs an active Facebook Business page, it can create marketing and SEO (search engine optimization) opportunities easily and affordably to reach Facebook’s large group of users.
First, if the business page doesn’t exist at all, Facebook makes it easy to set up a business page at no charge and within a few minutes. Assuming the business owner has a personal Facebook page, all a business needs is a short description of the business, two photos (often a logo, professional headshot, or a banner), and a call to action to get started. No link to the personal page will be visible unless the user chooses to add that. The “call to action” can be as simple as prompting users to visit the website, which drives website traffic if nothing else. This also creates an ideal path to the website, as many users will search Facebook instead of using Google or other search engines. Page owners can also post to the business page, similar to how personal users post. For an additional fee, Facebook can also boost posts, which places posts higher in the news feed so more customers can see them. Users can immediately begin posting after the page has been set up, and Facebook Messenger allows the business page to interact with customers. The page will also have a section for insights, so the owner will know how people are engaging the Facebook business page. An owner can also directly list products or services, which will give the owner a quick way to pique customer interest to explore both the Facebook page and the website further.
An owner can further inspire customer interest with Facebook Advertising. These ads can promote to customers that haven’t yet liked a business page or on other platforms. If one chooses Facebook Advertising, the platform will take them through a series of steps. First, an advertising goal will be chosen. This can be anything from promoting an e-commerce site to simply increasing brand awareness. Second, the owner can target a specific audience. Location, demographics and behaviors are among the metrics Facebook uses. For example, if an owner wants to target college-educated residents of a particular metro area or region, Facebook can accommodate this request so the business owner doesn’t pay to post ads outside of the target demographic. Users will then choose apps on which to promote, meaning Facebook, Instagram, Audience Network (which is Facebook’s ad network), or any combination of these. Users can also set the budget, and Facebook will work with most any budget to make ad placement affordable and effective. This is done by regulating where and how often an ad appears until the time limit and/or the budget is exhausted. Finally, owners can choose whether to use photos, videos, slideshows, carousel, or canvas ads.
Facebook makes setting up a business page simple and gives owners the opportunity to post, communicate, and advertise to a customer base and beyond. This page can offer tremendous benefits to a business owner, allowing owners to advertise directly and indirectly to customers and to drive traffic to business pages outside of Facebook. And the increased content and interaction improve SEO, which is critical to appearing in a higher place on organic search engine searches. With an increased business presence at little (or sometimes zero) cost, a Facebook business page is a tool every business should use.