Opinions on this are sharply divided – one thing is certain however..
The days when just having a Facebook business page guarantees an audience appear to be waning.
Being old enough to remember the early days of the web there was a time when having a web site – any web site – and offering customers an (e)mail ordering service meant that you got traffic and orders, it isn’t any surprise to me that Social Networks are becoming harder to exploit.
Early adopters reap the best of the rewards as they take most risks but it would be hard to argue that an e-commerce site has no place today given the number of companies that successfully trade on the web.
So lets look at the arguments for and against.
This article http://dashburst.com/facebook-business-page-fail/ lists 7 reasons why Facebook pages are not as easy to exploit as they used to be.
Some of them appear very compelling at face value:- Note however that the claim at no 7 about page activity isn’t backed up by any sort of announcement from Facebook.
This interview with Facebooks SMB manager Felicity McCarthy argues the point for:
Notice how she specifically mentions your budget.
Bottom Line – My View
It does seem that the “free ride” phase of Facebook for business is drawing to a close but that doesn’t mean that businesses can’t use Facebook or gain advantage from it.
It also means that you need a better understanding of the service and why people use it to gain some traction for your efforts.
You need to consider more carefully the type of material you are supplying and how your call to actions work. Things like the way Facebook users* dislike leaving the site to visit an external website without a reason will have an increasing impact as will the tendency to ignore info without any social element.
It’s the nature of business to make you work smarter today to grow your results – why should social media be any different?
*I hate the term user. There are usually better terms that acknowledge the humanity of people who operate a system but in this case it would cloud the meaning to use another term.