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Facebook New Design Fallout: Your Traffic?

Thursday, October 06, 2011

"What if Google went away?"

It's one of the things I like to say when I speak about the importance of email marketing and list building for bloggers. It's a deliberately attention-getting phrase, and it matters. Still, too many people ignore it, though, because, LOL, no way Google's going away, right? What could possibly go wrong?

It matters because if your traffic (and therefore your dependent downstream revenue) depends on Google, and your search engine ranking changes, or you're dropped from the index, your ability to get new traffic is slaughtered. Without a solid list, your ability to continue to monetize your site and grow your business can be crippled, overnight.

So. In a post about Facebook, why the hell am I talking about Google? To illustrate this simple point: Facebook just "went away" for many blogging businesses. The new design has dramatically reduced Facebook referrals - and subsequent revenues - for many bloggers. Sure, Facebook.com is still there; it just isn't bringing most people nearly as much traffic and business as it used to.  It's the same idea, different web site. And prior to last week, I bet nobody would have thought that Facebook would "go away" either. Silly Phil, suggesting such a thing.

Yet here we are.

If you're relying on a third party site - Facebook, Google, Etsy, whatever - and building your business on it, last week's Facebook changes shows the real risks you are running. I'm not saying don't use, sell or manage your communities on Facebook; far from it. But pay more attention to bringing your traffic from third party sites to yours - the only one you actually control - and pay MUCH more attention to keeping visitors there and turning them into subscribers. 

Remember: Google, Facebook, whatever site you're "share cropping" on, don't know you, don't care about you, and are not in business to help you. They are there to help themselves, and if your business takes the hit while they take care of their business, it is not their problem. It is yours. What are you going to do about it?

Google's never going away?

Facebook just went away for many small businesses.

Who's next?

Are you ready?

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Anonymous Michele Price @Prosperitygal said...

Yes, you are on target, which is why I tell people the difference between working with someone who knows internet marketing vs social media, choose the one who knows BOTH.

It has amazed me how there are so many folks who are "gurus" on one thing. Now niches can be great do not distort my words anyone, yet having the fundamentals , the core of what it take to create a powerful presence online is more than either internet marketing or social media alone.

Love how you point out what some of us have said for a long time-focus on your "Mothership" - your site-your blog first as the center of your business and universe-then add planets & stars

10:07 AM, October 26, 2011  
Anonymous Phil Hollows said...

Thanks for commenting, Michele. As you can tell I'm a huge believer in the hub and spoke approach. Drive content from your hub (blog) to the spokes (email, social media, Google via SEO), and then drive traffic from the spokes back to the hub (blog) where you can manage it, moentize it, control it. DJ Waldow has a similar post today on the same topic, his is about slideshare: http://ar.gy/glr

10:16 AM, October 26, 2011  
Anonymous Phil Hollows said...

And the next site is ... Klout! Scores are all mangled as of today. Klout is silly but if you were unwise enough to tie your social proof, credibility or, God forbid, your compensation to your Klout score, then in all likelihood they just nailed you to the wall. Do they care about you? Not at all.

Focus on relevant metrics and tasks that build traffic and engagement and drive visitors to your blog.

5:52 PM, October 26, 2011  
Anonymous Liz said...

If you're depending solely on social media in general to drive traffic to your content, you're doing it wrong. You need to actually get out there and talk to people. You need to read other blogs and comment, add to the conversation. You need to engage with your Twitter followers and Facebook fans, instead of just tweeting/posting "New post! Go read it! http://yourwebsite.com/yay-new-post/"

Even worse, if you don't have your own website and are just using a Facebook page, you could very easily lose control of your content.

I'm curious to see the traffic stats to Facebook in general after their revamp. I deleted mine a month ago, so I have no idea what it looks like now. I was kind of hoping this article would have some stats and screenshots. Still, it's definitely something to chew on.

6:08 PM, October 29, 2011  

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