The Facebook Like button is perhaps the most widely used website widget across the web. It is used on millions of websites around the world and it’s become integrated into the way we browse the web and share interesting content we come across with our friends and contacts. Because of how actions figure in Facebook’s Open Graph, it’s become more important now to use the Facebook Like button across your website than it was before.
Facebook’s Like Button
Facebook’s Like button is the quickest way for people to share content with their social contacts. A single click of the button will ‘like’ pieces of content on the web and share them on Facebook.
How to get the code for your Like button
To get the code for your Like button, fill in the following:
- URL to Like
- Layout of the button
- Width and
- Action type
The Facebook Like button comes in 4 different layouts: standard, box count, button count and button. Facebook also allows two action type options for the Like button: Like or Recommend.
Next you need to check or uncheck the following two boxes:
- Show Friends’ Faces
- Include Share Button
With all the above information specified, click Get Code.
In addition to the settings above, you can also change other things about your Like button. We’ll discuss three.
- colorscheme: The color scheme used by the plugin can be light or dark. The default is light.
- href: This is the absolute URL of the page that will be liked.
- kid-directed-site: If your website is directed to children under 13, you must enable this. The default is false.
A Quick Q&A
Is it better to display the Like button on its own or use the Like and Share buttons together?
The difference between the two options will probably answer this question for you. The Facebook Like button lets people post links to Facebook with a single click. The Share button on the other hand allows users to add a personal message and customize what they are sharing before posting. In most cases, it’s better to include both buttons on your website and allow people to decide how they want to share your content.
Can you display the Share button without the Like button?
Of course you can. To do so, follow this link https://developers.facebook.com/docs/plugins/share-button/ instead of the one above.
As of August 27 2013, Facebook has new terms applying to all Pages making it easier for businesses of all sizes to create and run promotions on the social site. Here is what you basically need to know:
– Promotions on Facebook can now be administered on Page Timelines. Previously, this was only possible through apps. This means that businesses can now:
- Collect entries by having fans and followers post on a Page or comment on a Page post
- Collect entries by having fans and followers message a Page
- Use Likes as a voting system
What remains unchanged is that like before, businesses cannot run promotions on personal Timelines.
– Accurate tagging is now a requirement in promotions. This maintains accuracy of Page content and prohibits Pages from encouraging Facebook users to tag themselves in content they are not actually depicted in.
For instance, if you own a bar and you have a new drink, it’s OK to ask people to submit names for your new product in exchange for a chance to win a prize but you cannot ask people to tag themselves in pictures of your new drink in exchange for a chance to win a prize.
More about Facebook’s Promotion Guidelines
Before we get into what’s changing and the best practices for businesses to create and administer promotions on Facebook, let’s think about what is considered a promotion on Facebook.
On Facebook, a promotion typically includes 3 components:
- Element of chance
- A giveaway
Facebook has now removed the requirement that promotions on the social site may only be administered within apps. Promotions are now also allowed on Page Timelines but not on personal Timelines. These new promotion guidelines make it easier for businesses of all sizes to create and run promotions on Facebook.
To make the most of these new Page terms, here are a few things to consider:
Local business owners are constantly assessing whether or not social media is a rewarding promotional vehicle. In most cases, the dilemma stems from the fact that successful social media marketing costs but there is clear evidence that businesses have been propelled forward using social media because consumers gravitate to these channels of communication.
As a business owner, you want eyeballs on your products and services. According to this list of the most popular websites worldwide, clearly the social networks including Facebook, YouTube and Twitter are where the large swaths of consumers are.
The Value of Social Media for Local Businesses
The social networks including Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube, LinkedIn and Pinterest have huge volumes of visitors. Of course, just because a social network has millions of users does not mean that it’s an estimable tool for business promotions. There is a valid criticism that for some types of business promotions, the social networks and the activities taking place on them are not serviceable. With that said, there are a few other arguments against social media for local businesses.
1. No Real Sales
Businesses usually don’t see direct sales from social media marketing activities. People use the social sites to find products and services. There is no real purchase intent involved.
2. No Real Traffic
Work and content invested in social media is a lot like “sharecropping.“ There is not much traffic that gets referred from the social sites to websites.
However, what you need to realize is this:
– Business promotion is by nature ephemeral work. The benefit lasts for only a limited period of time whether it’s on the social networks or offline. For example, you could set up shop in a neighborhood someday and after a couple of months, the road infrastructure changes and traffic is directed away from your district.
– And secondly if you are not getting real sales and enough site traffic from the social networks, you are probably not doing your social promotion right.
The Benefits of Social Media for Local Businesses
In addition to the obvious benefits of social media including the traffic and sales prospects that the social networks lend to your site, there are other substantial arguments for social media marketing.
1. From an SEO Perspective
Activities on the social media networks generate social signals that can help sites rank better in the SERPs. Both Google and Bing acknowledge that social signals are now important ranking factors in their search algorithm mix.
2. Proactive ORM
Activity on some of the more popular social media networks provides your business with leverage and safeguards your reputation. For example, say a prospective customer Googles your business name, your social profiles and status updates are more likely to rank in Google’s search results over negative webpages from dissatisfied customers and competitors.