DO’s and DON’Ts for your website homepage

Some essential Do’s and Don’ts from web copywriting specialist Jackie Barrie.

Contact us for Jackie’s next ‘Write Your Own Website” course at AMP House in Croydon, from 10.00 am to 4.00 pm just email the team

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Why your Facebook page isn’t working (and what you can do about it)

Why your Facebook page isn't working picBy Jackie Barrie, copywriter, trainer, speaker and author at www.jackiebarrie.com 

Do you have a Facebook page for your business? Lots of people do. But they are not all getting the results they want.

Recently, I have been invited to review the Facebook pages for a number of clients. They seem to have the same missed opportunities in common. I’ve collated the main issues in this article, in case they apply to you too.

These common-sense tips are the kind of thing you will learn on Jackie’s ‘Write your own website’ course in Croydon on 18 September 2013. Click here for more details.

Your Facebook Page

  1. Facebook have changed their rules about what you can include in your cover image. You can now add a call to action, contact details and pricing details as long as text takes up no more than 20% of the image area. It’s wise to include your key message and URL (web address) plus an arrow pointing to the Like button saying, for example, “Please like our page for great gift ideas and more”. That’s because your objective for people landing on the page is (a) to capture them as likers so they see future updates in their newsfeed (b) to drive them to your website.
  2. Ensure your profile picture fits the square format and is simple enough to reproduce well at the small size used in updates (30 x 30px). If your logo is not square to start with, use a photo-editing tool to add white space in the background.
  3.  Change your app images and text to make them work harder for you. To do this, click the down-pointing arrow to the right of the apps, click the edit pencil, click edit settings, click add custom tab image (111 x 74px), click save, click okay.

If you have an update that you really don’t want page visitors to miss, such as a “Welcome” message, you can ‘pin it’ to the top of the page. Click the edit pencil and click ‘pin’. This lasts for a week. If you want the update to remain at the top of the page, just re-pin it weekly.

If you have a striking landscape image, or perhaps a graphic showing a special offer you are running, you can click to ‘highlight’ it. It will then appear across both columns and be unmissable to your page visitors.

Those are the main elements that people will see when they visit your page. But it’s a fact that most likers will never go back to your page! Rather, they will see your updates in their newsfeed, as long as they are online at the right time. For maximum chance of being noticed, it’s important to post regularly.

Your Facebook Updates

Note that Facebook has become highly visual (like the rest of the Internet). As you may have noticed, the first app will always be photos, whether you like it or not! What’s more, it is said that videos on Facebook get shared 30% more than anything else. So, ideally, you should post images and video updates more than text.

Remember, most likers won’t see your whole page, but will see your updates in their newsfeed, so your objective on status updates is to get people to click like, comment or share. That way, their friends see your updates too (and you hopefully get more likes on your page, and so it goes on). Occasionally, so you don’t annoy people, you want to add calls to action in your updates, such as: “Please like if you agree”, “Click share if you like cake”, or “What do you think? Add a comment below” etc.

Ensure your updates are not too sales-y. People on Facebook are not generally in the mood to buy. They are in the mood to share interesting stuff with their friends. Look at the updates on your page and analyse those that have had the most engagement. In future, do more of the same. Also, mix up the content so there is social stuff along with the sales-y stuff.

Many people check their social media during their commute home, or during the ad breaks on TV, not during the working day. That doesn’t mean that you have to be online at those times too. Note that you can schedule updates to go out at the time of day when your audience is online. You can also backdate updates, which can be specially useful when setting up a new page.

To extend your reach, you can pay for promoted posts (prices start at only around £4). That means that friends of friends will see your updates for three days. The downside is that it might annoy them to see your unsolicited posts in their newsfeed, and it might attract unwanted comments that you need to moderate.

You can also pay for Facebook advertising to promote your page. Just click the ‘Create an ad’ button and work through the steps. If you do this, ensure you choose ‘Pay for clicks’ not ‘Pay for impressions’, otherwise it costs you money every time Facebook shows the ad in someone’s sidebar, not just when they click the link.

Summary

To summarise, Facebook is a numbers game. At page level, you need as many likes as possible so more people will see your updates. At update level you need as much engagement as possible so more people see your updates. Overall, you are trying to generate clicks back to your blog and/or your website, which is where you convert traffic into sales.

Disclaimer: Facebook has announced that it is changing the two-column timeline page design and removing apps, but I don’t know when, and I don’t yet know what the new page design will look like.

These common-sense tips are the kind of thing you will learn on Jackie’s ‘Write your own website’ course in Croydon on 18 September 2013. Click here for more details.

We hope you found these ideas useful. Please add your comments below.

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