Is Facebook the New “Website?”

I was having breakfast with a friend I hadn’t seen in a long time.  She owns a very successful non public agency which provides services to individuals with autism.  She has a great website.  It’s chock full of information and excellent resources for parents who are not only seeking services but also seeking answers to all of those unanswered questions about autism.   She recently hired a PR firm who told her “Facebook will be replacing websites” because people spend more time on Facebook.

Facebook Functionality

Can this be? I find it hard to believe that Facebook will ever truly replace the ease and functionality of a website.  Just think about my friend’s website Autism Spectrum Therapies.   Take a quick visit there.  She’s about to launch a new, updated site, but regardless, there is a ton of information on there.   It’s easy to click on a tab and read a testimonial or download a parent tip sheet or even read their blog.  I guess it’s possible to have Facebook be the “one stop shopping” model for most businesses if it’s done right.  These days you can set up a mini website on your Facebook page so the visitor need never leave your platform. Just the thought of it still  feels crowded to me.  Me and 1 billion of my closest friends and family.  I think it all depends on the type of business you own as to whether or not Facebook can act as a replacement (see my first blog).  For example, erincondren.com uses Facebook as a platform for all of their customer service inquiries and comments.  I think that’s brilliant and it serves them well.  It’s the perfect way to create and sustain engagement.  However, they still need their main website to be able to show off the hundreds, if not thousands of products they offer.

One Big Happy Family

In this big world of ours there’s room enough for everyone.  We want to keep our economy growing and that means continuing to hire and use those incredibly talented web designers and developers.  Granted we can hire them to make memorable Facebook Wall Images or effective  Welcome Tabs,  but my guess is that won’t be gratifying enough.  There are super creative geniuses out there who really can create a magical visitor experience through websites.    We’ll see what the future holds, but for now, I like having the flurry of interactions, comments and feedback on Facebook and then being able to shut down that world, not be tempted by familiar faces on the right hand side and enjoy a little quiet time just being a statistic on a google analytics chart.

So when you’re ready to join the happy family, whatever your preference is (hopefully both), please go to my Contact page on this site, or at the very least, I welcome your comments below.