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Are websites obsolete in our social media world?

July 10, 2011
Jim Huber

To have a website or not, when your business can set up your own (free) social media page, that is the question.

I was asked this a couple years ago, well before Facebook hit 750 million users, big companies were advertising the Facebook pages on TV commercials, and I was listing my LinkedIn page on my business card.

I am slow to jump on bandwagons, including the social media one. But it's been a few years, and I am (cautiously) on board. And like the first time I was asked, my answer is: No.

My general opinion is that blogs and social networking sites are fine for reaching certain audiences, but they lack branding, and a location dedicated to only the business. Use those services, but keep a place, at very least, where you can "hang your hat."

To me, it's sort of like the difference between renting an area in someone's office and having your own office. The former is better than nothing, but doesn't have the same credibility as the latter.

Also, think about it these ways:

  • When someone asks for your website, which is easier to remember and sounds more professional: "Huberspace dot net" or "Linkedin dot com slash i n slash Huberspace."
  • And when someone searches for your biz or your services in Google, which will they click on first? The direct website of a company or the LinkedIn page or blog?

Yes, social media sites are great tools that have large membership and are even free. But so was GeoCities.