The title seems like a silly question, right? It should be obvious; social media has completely dominated in ways people couldn’t have predicted. In fact, according to the Pew Research Center, over 75% of adults have an online presence – and if you only look at millennials and younger people? – that percentage is dramatically higher. So it would seem obvious that a business would want to have an online presence. However, there are still plenty of business owners, especially those in older generations, who either don’t have a full understanding of how they can use social media to their benefit, or why they would need to use social media. These are fair questions, and there are a lot of answers to them, but I’m going to break down a few (of many) key reasons why your business should jump on the social media train.
Social media beats search engines in referral traffic to websites
Before the social media boom, people would generally refer to search engines (Yahoo, Bing, Google, ect) to find the information they need on a brand or website. However, in recent studies, it has shown that social media drives more traffic to websites than traditional search engines. 90% of companies have reported increased exposure and over half have reported an increase in sales from social media. If your business has an online presence, it makes it easier for people to find you, your products/services and your company’s website.
It can help legitimize your brand
Believe it or not, social media can help establish legitimacy with your brand. There are many company websites that either remain static, or they change very little. Social media brings your brand to life, in a way, by keeping customers updated on the business, products, services, employees and special events. Humanizing a business is a great way to garner support and bring in new customers (it should be noted that managing your social media pages poorly can quickly de-legitimize a brand. Create an online presence and stay committed to managing it).
Increase customer service
One of the great features of social media is that it gives you the ability to communicate with others instantly, and with that also comes the ability to quickly address customer concerns or questions. A key concern to many online shoppers is how responsive a company is to customer service. Similar to legitimizing your brand, it is very important that you commit yourself to routinely checking, updating and managing your social media pages – this allows you to stay on top of any customer feedback, questions or concerns.
Beating out search engines, legitimizing business & increasing customer service are just a few reasons why a company needs to have an online presence, but the list of benefits social media can have goes on and on (and on and on). Does your business need an online presence? YES, it absolutely does, but just creating a Facebook page or registering on Twitter isn’t enough; your business’s social media pages need to be maintained and managed well. Do this, and you can take your business to levels you previously never thought possible.