Social networking powerhouse Facebook recently issued the popular Like button to third-party websites, giving business owners the ability to embed a simple line of HTML code to any content on their site. In doing so, the Like button will appear on that page and can further boost a site’s marketability and promote products and services through the popular social networking site.
Facebook’s new program, aptly named “Social Plugins,” and its new Like button essentially replace the Become A Fan button, which connected fans to a company’s Facebook page and put the company’s message in their Facebook Wall feed. Becoming a “fan,” however, was limited to pages on Facebook.
The Like button, conversely, gives a business owner control, allowing users to share their likes on any of a business’s products, articles, reviews, or services without the consumer ever leaving the business’s site or even searching for its page on the social network itself. When a consumer clicks the Like button, it automatically appears on their Facebook Wall (assuming their privacy settings allow this information to be made public).
It is important to point out that these Social Plugins are an extension of Facebook and the detailed analytics of those using them stay with Facebook. This means if you’re a business owner who has 1,000 people “liking” a piece of content on your website, you don’t have any way to get more details on your new fans. For a business owner, it may seem like a complete waste of time. However, what the Like button is actually doing is anything but. Here are three reasons you should consider adding the Like button to your website.
- Not only is the button populating the consumer’s Facebook page, it is also doing the same with every one of the user’s friends. The mass appeal-type advertising has the potential to hit hundreds and quite possibly thousands of Facebook Walls on any given day.
- Setting up a Like button is pretty easy. By visiting Facebook’s social plugins page, the site operator can simply copy and paste the iframe tag into the pages the business owner would like to promote.
- Implementing the Like button allows companies to reach and respond to their customers in a very specific way. For instance, if a company sees that few people are “liking” a certain product, it may want to offer a special discount or move it on the virtual shelf. Moreover, a business owner may see that a particular product is being “liked” by hundreds of people and therefore put a lot of emphasis on that product and/or bundle it with similar products in the store.
Social Plugins offers more than just the Like button. Here are two plugins that can help turn any site into a more engaging experience.
- The Activity Feed Plugin displays the most recent activity taking place on a company’s site and shows users a stream of the recent “Likes” and comments from their friends to the site they are visiting. It will also display when users Like content and when users share content from the site back to Facebook. This can be extremely helpful to any business that is looking for a way to specifically target hot items or track trends of a certain product or service it provides. This is a great tool to begin selling to a customer’s future interests rather than guessing what they may or may not be interested in.
- Adding the Personalized Page Recommendations plugin to a site will allow a business owner to show its users specific page recommendations based on the Likes and comments across the company’s entire site. Adding the recommendations plugin will give those on-the-fence customers the ability to see what’s popular and give them a better shopping experience by providing relevant information.