Jul 11 / 2023
One question that business owners often have is “Why have a website when you can manage the business on social media?” This is a valid question given the power social media has on customers. But is a social media account enough to run a successful business? This blog touches on one of the most debated topics in the marketing community – website or social media.
Website vs. Social Media – Which Is the Winner?
For a business to thrive, both website and social media are valuable. Both serve different purposes and can complement each other. This might seem like a vague answer but it is the truth. You just cannot ignore one for the other.
Social media platforms skyrocketed to the peak of their popularity during the pandemic period. More and more businesses started to venture onto social media platforms thus opening a new world of possibilities. It is hard not to see the many benefits of growing your business on social media.
On the other hand, research suggests that websites still play a crucial part in achieving a strong online presence. This makes both website and social media essential for business marketing.
If you want to know more about the two platforms and what each does best, then get ready to read further.
Some factors are essential for marketing your business and given below is an analysis of how these two platforms fare when it comes to these factors.
Cost of Creation
When you are an entrepreneur with a low to no budget for marketing, then social media is the hands-down winner.
Most of the social media platforms are free to use. You can make your content reach a wide range of audiences completely free of cost.
Websites on the other hand cost a lot for both development and management. Social media accounts come with a ready-made structure that can save you time and money. Hence, if you are looking for a low-budget choice during the initial years of your startup, then social media is your best choice.
Though social media is a powerful tool, it still doesn’t belong to you. You are limited by the rules and regulations of the social media platform.
It means that your Twitter, Instagram or Facebook account on which you spend lots of time could be shut down, censored or blocked and you can do nothing about it.
One great example is the recent change in the ownership of Twitter. Now Twitter users should play by the new rules and mind you, the ownership can change in the future.
Also, we have heard many cases of posts or even whole accounts being deleted or blocked by Instagram. This means that you will have to start from scratch, even though it is no mistake of your own. Another factor that most find annoying is that the call-to-action button with a link in Instagram is not available unless you opt for paid promotion or have over 10k followers. Otherwise, you just have to say “link in bio” and hope people are interested enough to go there and click.
The grid structure in Instagram can sometimes be a pain. Besides that, old posts are not available easily.
The social media platforms can crash for a few hours (or days) and this means that your business also crashes for that period.
Also Read: How to Market using Social Media for Different Generations
The Trust Factor
Social media accounts can be set up by anyone. While this might be viewed as an advantage, it can also lead to a lot of scams and frauds.
Professional websites exude a sense of trust because of the way they showcase the business’s credentials, expertise and more. Thus, people tend to trust businesses with well-designed websites more than a social media account they found by chance.
Content for Customers
A website provides a centralized online presence where you have full control over the content and design. It allows you to showcase your products or services in detail, provides information about your business, and engages with your audience through various features like blogs, contact forms and e-commerce functionality. Digital branding is crucial for a business’s success and it can be more effectively done on a website.
A website can also help establish credibility and professionalism for your business.
On the other hand, social media platforms have a large user base, which can be leveraged to reach a wider audience and build a community around your brand. It offers visual storytelling through images and videos and allows you to engage with your followers through comments, direct messages and live features. Social media can be particularly effective for businesses that rely on visual content, such as fashion, food, or travel when compared to other verticals.
Search Engine Ranks
Arguably, websites are the better choice when you want to have a strong online presence. When you search for a product on the web, the first page is mostly filled with websites rather than social media accounts. This also means indirectly that the search engines trust and favor websites over social media accounts.
With a website, you can employ SEO to boost your organic search results which in turn produces quality leads. You can choose relevant keywords and even include blogs, free demos, free PDF downloads and more to attract customers. SEO gives you the freedom to target certain groups of customers.
Ideally, having both a website and an Instagram handle can create a strong online presence for your business. Your website can serve as a hub of information and transactions, while Instagram can help you showcase your brand, reach a broader audience, and drive traffic back to your website. Integrating your social media profiles with your website can provide a seamless user experience and enhance your marketing efforts.
Tracking of Data
For improving your business, you need to constantly analyse data that is relevant to sales and marketing. With a website, you can easily get hold of this data and use it to create a better strategy for the future. You can use tools like Google Analytics to track data including the number of users who visited the site, the number of conversions, the bounce rate and even the time spent by the visitors on the site.
On social media platforms, this kind of data is not available and measurement of traffic is not as comprehensive as for a website.
Also Read: Choosing the Right E-Commerce Web Development Company: A Comprehensive Guide
Connection with the Customers
Social media is better for making personal connections with customers since people spend a lot of their time on social media. The business owners can directly communicate with the customers.
You can build your brand on social media and showcase your belief and brand personality. Engaging with the customers by posting relevant content, creating a question and comment session, or offering a discount to loyal followers can create a personal bond between your followers and the brand and will make sure your customers keep coming back for more.
Website is a must for businesses even when social media might seem enough. Websites are your portal to establish a strong online presence and make your business reach a wider audience. Social media might be effective for businesses based on fashion, travel and similar verticals but authenticity and trust are gained only with a well-developed website.
LBN Tech Solutions
If you are looking for a company that can develop a kick-ass professional website or an e-commerce website, then we are here for you. Give our portfolio a peek here before you call us.