Many small business owners still fail to understand Facebook Pages

October 2, 2011

Businesses using Facebook Pages

A recent survey of small business owners conducted by sought to discover how businesses are using Facebook fan pages and it was revealed that only half of respondents use Facebook professionally, those who do frequently reported an increase in revenue related to their Facebook use.

With over three quarters of all respondents claiming to have set up their own Facebook Page, it was surprising to learn that only 3.5 percent of small business owners polled hired a professional to develop their Facebook Page. The poll did not correlate results with how the Page was set up, but we suspect the professionally developed Pages performed better for likely being more polished, professional, take advantage of iframes, and void of too many widgets and tabs (a common sin of Facebook Pages set up by non-marketers).

Of those surveyed, 16.3 percent used a “do-it-yourself” Facebook Page builder tool, with Pagemodo (the creator of the infographic below) as the most popular followed by Buddy media, Wix and FaceItPages. Some services are superior to others and using templated Page tools is akin to using a templated website.

How do businesses use Facebook Pages?

Behavior was also polled, with 85 percent of small businesses polled saying they share basic information about their business on their Facebook Page, 62 percent share media like pictures or videos, 27 percent offer customer support and 23 percent hold contests. What shocked us, however, is that less than half note that they have conversations with customers. Facebook Pages have the distinct advantage of being more than a microphone and gives a unique opportunity to connect with consumers, but it appears that more than half do not take advantage of the culture of Facebook.

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Nearly three in four respondents claim they will increase their use of Facebook in the next six months, while only 1.6 percent say their use will decrease, making the race for eyeballs and web attention even more competitive.

For companies without a Facebook Page, nearly one in five cite the main reason being that they don’t understand how a Facebook Page will help their business, 17.5 percent say they don’t think their customers are even on Facebook, 17.2 percent say they don’t understand how to get a Facebook Page, and a shocking 14.5 percent saying they’ve never heard of a Facebook Page.

Confusion or not, only 40 percent of respondents say they have no plans on building a Facebook business page, a statistic we anticipate will change rapidly in the next 24 months as Facebook becomes mainstream and the time spent on Facebook continues to skyrocket.

Small businesses using Facebook:

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Tara Steele is the News Director at The American Genius, covering entrepreneur, real estate, technology news and everything in between. If you'd like to reach Tara with a question, comment, press release or hot news tip, simply click the link below.

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