It has been a little over a month since Facebook made algorithmic changes that significantly decreased the likelihood that followers of a Facebook page would see a post if the post was not sponsored. The verdict is not yet in as to how much this has impacted businesses, mainly because most businesses saw this change happening gradually in 2014.
If your business has started feeling the impact of this change, and you are looking for ways to leverage your Facebook followers without having to make a marketing allocation, then you need to take a look at the value of activating call-to-action buttons on your business page.
Activating the call-to-action button on your Facebook business page is particularly valuable if you already have a significant number of followers, and you have identified the fact that some engagements with new potential customers are happening first on Facebook, without the potential shopper ever having exposure to your website.
What Are Facebook Business Pages’ Call-to-Action Buttons?
Facebook had this to say about the call-to-action buttons:
Designed to bring a business’ most important objective to the forefront of its Facebook presence, call-to-action buttons link to any destination on or off Facebook that aligns with a business’ goals.
There are multiple types of call-to-action buttons, and they seem to be most relevant in the case of businesses that have on-page engagement, such as the ability to book a reservation or make a direct purchase. There are currently seven different types of call-to-action Facebook buttons:
The Book Now call-to-action button is our preferred choice for businesses and organizations whose site is reservations-ready. By this, we mean users should be able to go online and instantly look at availability calendars and schedules as well as pricing, and set aside a time slot of their choice.
The Book Now call to action is best suited for hotels, restaurants, beauty salons, spas, auto mechanics, and local attractions. Do not use the Book Now call to action on your Facebook page if you don’t have a reservations-ready interface. Pointing your Book Now call-to-action button to a Contact Us form or a page with your phone number impacts the user experience, and can in turn result in diminished engagement.
Restaurants using the Book Now may want to explore the benefits of pointing their Book Now call to action to an external website that is highly familiar with Web users, such as OpenTable.
The Contact Us call-to-action button is a great fit for brick and mortar businesses that need to qualify the call prior to engaging with the customer, or when a website lacks a proper interface for direct bookings.
A Contact Us Facebook call-to-action is also useful when the merchant knows that there are significant chances to upsell by engaging directly with the potential customer. A great application for a Contact Us call to action is in the case of services such as home remodelers, plumbers, electricians, and other trades. Since each situation is unique in nature and requires a custom quote, the transaction is best handled at a personal level, via a contact for or by direct call.
The Use App call-to-action button is particularly tricky for small business. The main reason it presents a challenge is the cost associated with the development of an app, as well as the level of use/engagement customers are likely to have with your app.
If you do decide to launch one and connect it to your call to action on Facebook, then think in terms of rewarding customer loyalty or providing your customers with the means to voice their opinion about your products and services in real time. Generally speaking, for the purpose of increasing revenue or gaining additional visibility and reputation, we feel the Use App call-to-action button has minimal impact for small to medium businesses.
We love the Play Game call-to-action Facebook button. If you are a small business looking for ways to show appreciation and increase engagement from your most loyal followers, then this call-to-action button is for you.
Consider rolling promos via online games that reward participants with coupons to use at your venue. As a filter for participation, build your game in such a way that facilitates data capture in order to expand and enrich your customer email list. Growing your customer email list can be significantly useful if you decide to use review generation tools by third-party review sites such as Review Express by TripAdvisor. As an added value, by rolling a promo or a discount your venue will build rapport with customers, thus increasing the chances of receiving a highly rated review.
If you are a local business with a Web-based e-commerce platform, then you are going to appreciate the value of the Shop Now call-to-action button. Giving your customers a direct means to partake in Web-rooming prior to hitting your shop will increase your in-store conversion, and will add to the consumer confidence, setting the stage for a great review for as long as you support the in-store sale with superior customer service.
Please note that the Shop Now call-to-action button needs to be pointed to a high-quality e-commerce platform. If your online store is not in tip-top shape, then activating this feature could theoretically be detrimental to your online reputation by delivering a frustrating user experience that may garner a negative opinion about your venue, even before the customer crosses the threshold of your shop.
The Sign Up call-to-action button is a wonderful way to grow your email list. Because many of the niche-review sites, such as Cars.com, actually allow for direct review requests from your most valuable customers, making sure you have their info as part of your CMS is key in increasing your review generation speed.
A well-done video is a fantastic tool of marketing and branding by triggering recall and banking on virality. Videos that are funny, engaging, or have an emotional appeal stand to go viral, and can help your brand reach new potential customers through the magic of social engagement. Note that when including a call to action that points to a video, you need to make sure the video contains social buttons to facilitate sharing.
Thoughtfully installing your call-to-action Facebook buttons in combination with a business page that’s engaging, caring, and home to great Facebook reviews is a must-do for any business. This type of tool stands to make up for the deficit created by Facebook’s changes and, with luck, it can actually surpass the level of engagement of prior Facebook posts pushed with marketing, sales, and brand awareness as the main priorities. Take a moment to learn more about call-to-action buttons, and seriously consider activating yours, both as a means of improved customer service and as a tool to help you boost your online reputation.