Social media has proven itself as a formidable force in the world of marketing. It’s a great way to attract potential customers, create leads, and keep your buyers loyal through updates and fun posts. And while it is relatively simple to design your social media pages to lead readers to your website, it is much more difficult to draw your website readers to your Facebook, Twitter, or even Pinstagram pages.
That’s why social media buttons, and their style and placement, are so crucial. It’s a trial and error process to find what works best for each website, because goals and demographics are different for each one, but there are some general tried and true guidelines. So here’s the Q&A every website owner could benefit from reading.
WHICH SOCIAL MEDIA NETWORKS SHOULD I USE?
This is the question that you, as a website owner, will have to answer on your own. But here’s how to do that. Start by analyzing the product or service you are trying to sell. Now think about who would most benefit from that product, or who is most likely to buy that service. This is your target demographic and it decides many of the design and marketing choices you make.
The social media networks that you will gain the most traffic and referrals from is based on your demographic. If you hope to market to a 20’s audience, then Instagram will probably be a good fit for you. If you want arts and crafts lovers to discover your brand, you will want to consider Pinterest. There are quite a few social media avenues out there, so do your research.
Whichever product or service you are offering, you will most likely want to include Facebook in your marketing strategy. Facebook has more users than any other social media platform and has been proven to provide more referrals and post engagement than anyone else. Your target market is on Facebook, so why not take a few minutes a day for a chance to reach them?
WHAT TYPE OF SOCIAL MEDIA BUTTON IS MOST EFFECTIVE?
Now that you know which social media sites you want to include on your own website, you need to design the actual buttons. There are a couple key points to consider.
- Standard vs Custom Buttons – there is a recognized standard design of button for every social media platform. Facebook has the blue background with a white “f” on it, Pinterest uses red and a very curly “P”, and Instagram has a colorful background with a white camera icon, just as a few examples. You can choose to either use these standard designs, or have a designer custom make buttons that fit your website theme. While the custom buttons will be more complimentary to your website, many users are looking for the standard button they are used to. Decide which matters more to you.
- Buttons vs Widgets – buttons are great for users to click on them and be redirected to the designated social media website. But there is another option: widgets. These can look similar to websites, but be more interactive. You can actually design the widget so users can login and follow your Facebook, Instragram, or Twitter feed will still on your own website! Widgets can be a bit more complicated to set up and do take up more space, so choose what fits your goals more.
WHERE DO MY SOCIAL MEDIA BUTTONS GO?
Some websites put their social media buttons or widgets on the footer. But here’s the problem with that: your potential follower needs to go searching for them. You want the buttons to be easy to find, and the first place users look for them is on the header. The sidebar is also just as a popular. The biggest rule is to keep them together. Don’t separate them and spread them over the whole page, turning it into a scavenger hunt.
Another great place for social media buttons is at the end of blog posts and articles. If you keep an article feed on your website, make it easy for readers to share the wonderful post they’ve just read. This will increase visibility for you and engage your readers in what you have to say.
There’s plenty more to consider when making decisions regarding social media buttons on your website. And a lot of it will be a case of trial and error as you see what works for you. But it can only do you good, so invest your time now so you can see the benefits in the long run.