I was on the phone with social media experts, Social Bees, discussing a client's custom built tab for their Facebook business page. During the call, he visited the client's website and didn't see a Facebook button. Immediately, he assumed they didn't yet have a Facebook business page. However, they do have a Facebook page, the button for which is on every single interior page, but not the home page. I treat this type of situation as a live focus group (on a tiny scale), so that I can witness the behavior of a user on a website, and then address it and fix it, rather than correct the user's behavior.
Several companies get very protective of the aesthetic of their home pages. They don't want to give up the real estate for a brand that is not their own, let alone a link off their website. But as we can see in Techcrunch's April 2010 article on comScore results about Facebook, traffic and legitimate time spent on Facebook and Twitter is serious. It's worth the imprint on your home page. Users are getting more and more impatient and demanding of websites. They want information now. Your customers will look for your Facebook and Twitter buttons on your website. Don't make them hunt, or you might miss their click to follow.
Consider this, from this Techcrunch report:
- As of April 2010, Facebook's pageviews were up 150% to 220 billion pageviews a month. And that increase is growing.
- Don't miss this number: Facebook had 220 billion pageviews a month. That means pages viewed by anyone - one person visiting 20 pages, one person visiting one page, and so on.
- About 7.5% of all time a person spends on the Internet was spent on Facebook. That means you need to be in front of that person as she is checking family photos, and so on.
- The Twitterverse is pretty huge, but as of April 2010, Facebook's audience grew by 22 million in one month, which Twitter estimates to be its entire US audience.
THE DESIGN OF YOUR SOCIAL BUTTONS
Are you emailing your web team right now to add your social buttons to your home page, or to your site at all if you haven't? There are two routes you could take for the visual design of these buttons:
- branded to your company, or
- branded to Facebook or Twitter (or other networks you are active on, like YouTube, LinkedIn, etc).
I could argue for both directions. For faster recognition by your audience, you might stick with the traditional colors and fonts of Facebook and Twitter. However, if you're itching for something more fun, that you think you audience might appreciate, you could custom design buttons that live within the visual personality of your brand. Consider these social button designs:
If you have neat buttons you'd like to show off, let us know in the Comments!