Social Media vs Website: Why Social Media Can’t Replace Your Website

Social media is no doubt an important tool in business. The cutting edge of social media as a marketing tool is how convenient it is to engage users.  Most social media platforms allow you to interact with users through pictures and videos, which stimulate them to take action. 

Social Media vs Website: Why Brands Think Social Media Pages Can Replace A Website Studies show that 44% of small businesses rely on social media to create brand awareness while another 41% relies on it to create revenue. This is most likely the reason why some brands are starting to believe that social media can replace domain names and websites.  Is it possible for a business to replace the domain name and website with social media handles? Yes. Is it advisable? No. Small businesses should have fully functional social media pages, but they must never replace a website. We explain this in the following social media vs website discussion:

Not All Your Clients Are On Social Media As popular as some social media platforms are, some people still prefer not to be on them due to many reasons. Some find it too intrusive and would rather keep their personal lives private while some do not have the time. Some people, especially those in the older generations do not even know how it works or how to use it. What if your potential clients fall into one or more of these categories? How would you engage them? There are currently over 2 billion social media users in the world but those are a mere fraction compared to the entire world’s population. What if your client falls into the category of people who find social media intrusive? How will you tell them about your products and services except through a website? 

Social Media Policies Are Always Changing The creators of social media apps usually have certain value propositions in mind when creating these apps. With time, they keep analyzing feedback and consumer behavior to know which policies to review.  This happens a lot and could affect your business in so many ways. If you are part of the 41% of businesses who rely on social media to generate revenue, then this might become a serious problem for you.  Take, for instance, you sell jewelry and usually post videos of your satisfied clients wearing jewelry bought from you on your Instagram story to gain new leads. Imagine that you have been doing it for close to a year and have been getting leads only for Instagram to take down the story feature and replace it with something else. You may lose a lot of clients due to this. If you had a website, on the other hand, you can effectively share videos of clients on it. And unlike the Instagram story, which disappears after 24 hours, it will always be there until you decide to take it down.

Social Media On Its Own Cannot Build Consumer Trust In every type of business, it is essential that you try to win the trust of your consumers. According to a survey, one out of every three consumers admits branding trust being one of the top three reasons why they shop with some retailers. Branding your social media pages with your logo and sharing information about your brand can help you advertise your product. However, it will not help you gain the trust of consumers. Social media pages are quite easy to hack due to the fact that your page is still within a domain and you do not have full control over it.  A report found that two out of every three adults have experienced hacking of one of their social media accounts. It appears to be quite easily done based on this information. So many social media platforms seem to have user pages that are usually alike in terms of user information, profile photo, and other features.

This shows that there are no copyright laws or restrictions in terms of using a name that is already in use.  It would result in a serious problem if one of your clients mistakenly interacted with one of these lookalike accounts only to find out that it is a fake.  Perhaps, they have already sent money to the account provided by the hacker and have fallen victim to their scheming.  They will find it hard to believe that you had nothing to do with it and this might lose some of the trust they have in you. With a website and domain name, it is very easy for you to put out content that most describes what your business is all about.  You can also include a live chat feature in case any clients have questions. All of these cannot be done with just social media; they require the use of a website. 

Social Media Does Not Improve Business Value A lot of people grow their businesses simply to have the pleasure of selling off the business when it has attained its optimum level. Or when they no longer have a need for it. In order to sell your business, you must know its value and be able to prove it to the prospective buyer. This is where assets like having a website come into play. Factors like leads, web traffic, blog, and inbound links are bound to increase the value of your business. The best way to promote the value of your business in case you need to sell is by having a fully functional website. 

Social Media Gives You Less Control  A high percentage of people who use social media for their business use it as an inbound marketing tool.  It is actually a tool that really works as a lot of users rank social media as their primary means of finding inspiration on which products to buy.  A major limitation of using social media for business is that you have to adhere strictly to all their policies. You might even be required to give them a percentage of the proceeds generated from sales leads they have generated for you.  Even when you need to run giveaways or online contests, it is a must for you to abide by their rules.

Another problem is how easy it is for social media authorities to lock a social media page if they believe that you are doing something wrong. All of these situations are completely avoidable with a website. Your web host would never force you to abide by their rules. You can carry out sales of products via your website, customers can track their orders via your website and you can also analyze trends in consumer behavior from your website. This is not possible with social media. A website allows you to take full charge of your online marketing process.

Social Media Does Not Enable The Use Of Analytics Tools Tools like Google Analytics to allow you to know how your website is doing. It will show what leads were generated and their respective sources, the traffic on your website and the conversion rates of visitors, etc. It also gives you insight into consumer behavior, the locations they search from, the keywords they use, the kinds of devices they use to conduct searches, and what they do with the search results. The essence of analytics tools is to know how your website is performing and also to find out what users do when they are on your website. Although a lot of businesses still underestimate the importance of web analytics as a business tool, more tech-savvy businesses are incorporating it into their digital marketing strategy.

It would be highly impossible to measure these metrics on social media, thus impeding the growth of your business. Your business will only grow if you know what your consumers need and the best way to meet those needs. Social media is unable to provide you with the metrics you need to push your business to the next level. 

Advertising Is Not Free On Social Media Despite the fact that it is free to open most social media accounts, it is not free to promote businesses on them.  In order to create a Facebook page, you do not need to pay any amount of money.  However, before your posts can be shared as a sponsored page on other people’s timelines, you have to pay some money. Though it is usually relatively cheap and can be custom-fitted to your budget, the bottom line is that you need to pay. Websites, on the other hand, offer the opportunity for free advertising in the form of search engine optimization. It is absolutely free and all you have to do for your webpage to rank among the search engine results is to create relevant content; content that matches the words searchers are looking for.  Search engines are really important in the growth of businesses. This survey shows that 93% of online experiences begin with a search engine. And 47% of people click on one of the first three listings.

Social Media VS Website: Conclusion  Finally, the more you try to compare social media vs website, the more you start to see that both have different functions and one cannot be replaced by the other. However, you should consider linking your social media pages to your website to increase your web traffic. And share engaging content on your social media pages after putting it on your website. James Cummings is a leading digital marketing expert, brand analyst, and business psychologist. He’s an experienced senior manager who has worked closely with global brands to deliver staffing solutions. He has interfaced at board level with FTSE 100 companies and successfully managed multiple web projects across different niches to their full cycle. Working with a team of top-level digital media professionals from around the globe, James’ WordPress portfolio currently spans over 40 properties.

How to Conduct a SWOT Analysis of Your Brand

The path to success is paved with obstacles. Knowing what your business’ strengths and weaknesses are is key to sorting those roadblocks out efficiently.  The goal of a Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities Threats (SWOT) analysis is to give you better insights into your brand. With that information, you’ll be ready to tackle a wide range of obstacles. In this article, we’ll break down how this technique can benefit your business and then go over the four steps to executing it, including examples.

Let’s get started!

What Is a SWOT Analysis (And What Are Its Benefits)?

“SWOT” is a fancy acronym for a process that involves taking a close look at your business or brand’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. You’re probably already aware of what several of them are, but breaking all this information down into digestible points can give you a new perspective.

With a thorough SWOT analysis, you can gain insights such as:

What business opportunities are ripe to be exploited
What areas of your business need an overhaul
Which of your competitors represents the most immediate threat
You can apply this technique to a specific area of your business – such as your marketing strategy or product development – or to your brand as a whole. Either way, to get the most out of a SWOT analysis, you need to dig deep. If you focus on superficial aspects, or you don’t involve the right people in the process, you won’t get much out of it.

How to Conduct a SWOT Analysis of Your Brand (In 4 Steps)

Unless you run a one-person operation, you need additional team members in the room when you undertake a SWOT analysis. Visual aids that enable everyone to keep track of relevant points are also critical, whether you’re using a videoconferencing tool or in a physical room.

You’ll also want to put aside at least a couple of hours if you’re going to conduct a thorough analysis, which is precisely the point of the SWOT technique. Let’s kick it off on a positive note by talking about strengths.

Step 1: Break Down Your Strengths

Every business has at least one element that gives it an edge over its competitors, no matter how small it might be. Knowing what those advantages are is vital, so you’re ready to seize opportunities when the time is right.

It’s important that the strengths you identify are unique to your brand and not areas your competitors also excel in. Additionally, don’t forget to factor in elements such as access to resources, as well as efficient and effective processes.

To illustrate how a SWOT analysis works, we’re going to focus on a real-life business example – Netflix. It’s the dominant player in online streaming, but that doesn’t mean the company doesn’t have any weaknesses or face any threats.

Some of Netflix’s strengths include:

The first-mover advantage over other streaming companies
Vast swaths of data about the content its users like
The ability to produce content at a fast pace other streaming services haven’t been able to match
Worldwide availability
Excellent brand recognition
A SWOT analysis begins with your brand’s strengths because they are often the easiest to break down. We all like to focus on the positives but to get a clear picture, you need to be willing to look at the other side of the coin.

Step 2: Lay Out Your Weaknesses

Laying out your brand’s weaknesses is not an exercise in self-deprecation. What it should be is a study in self-reflection that enables you to figure out in which ways your business is vulnerable.

Some areas you might consider examining are processes that are lacking productivity and any elements of your brand that might prevent leads from converting. Be honest, as holding back will only hurt you in the long run.

These days, Netflix commands a 19 percent share of the global streaming marketplace. In the US, it reigns king with about an 87 percent share. Those two figures paint a positive picture, but once you look closer, weaknesses become apparent, such as:

It’s burning through cash at an incredibly fast pace to keep their content output going
It faces difficulty renewing licenses for key properties
Its content library varies wildly in quality depending on the region you’re watching from
It’s no longer the only viable name in town when it comes to streaming
Its interface is sub-par
It’s also important to understand that strengths and weaknesses shift over time. In its infancy, Netflix’s biggest weakness was lacking a broad content library. These days, that’s no longer the case. However, it does face some difficulty in renewing essential licenses because it has a lot more competition.

One of the main takeaways here is that a SWOT analysis isn’t something you do just once. As your brand evolves, you’ll need to return to the drawing board often if you want to make sure your business is on the right track.

Step 3: Define Your Opportunities

The first two steps of a SWOT analysis are an exercise in introspection. Once you have that information, you can begin to build plans around it, starting with opportunities for growth.

Opportunities can certainly include innovative technologies and products. However, also keep your eyes open for new target audiences, small advantages over competitors you can seize and expand, and even solutions to your weaknesses.

Taking into account Netflix’s strengths and weaknesses, some of its opportunities might include:

Publishing new shows and movies at a rate competitor can’t match
Using its wealth of data to create highly-targeted content to maximize user satisfaction
Focus on redesigning its interface to make it easier to navigate their library and find content
Targeting regions where other streaming services don’t have a foothold yet to consolidate their market share
When it comes to business opportunities, it’s important to keep an open mind but to be realistic. As an example, an out-of-the-box idea would be for Netflix to start investing in Virtual Reality (VR) content.

This is an exciting idea – Netflix has the cash, they can attract top talent to develop content, and they have the technical infrastructure to deliver it. The problem is, VR adoption is still very low due to costs and hardware requirements.

Diverting money away from mainstream content towards VR productions might be an interesting bet in a few years. However, for now, it could leave Netflix vulnerable as other players are also starting to sink cash into streaming. Remember to weigh the potential risks and rewards for every opportunity you propose.

Step 4: Consider Your Threats

Remember how we talked about roadblocks at the beginning of this article? In a SWOT analysis, they’re called “threats”.

Pinpointing your threats requires attention to your industry at large. New competitors, changes in consumer trends and behaviors, the sustainability of your processes, and the emergence of new technologies are all factors to consider.

Although Netflix remains in a solid position, the company is facing some evident threats, such as:

New streaming services constantly entering the field
Other prominent players starting to sink massive amounts of money into original content
Customers who dislike the idea of paying for multiple streaming services
The potential for stagnation if it can’t keep up its aggressive content output
Netflix hasn’t been the only big-name streaming service for a long time now. However, competition has never been fiercer. Players such as Disney+ and Amazon Prime Video might eat further into Netflix’s market share.

It’s also important to keep in mind that most people don’t have unlimited budgets for online subscriptions. At some point, a significant number of subscribers might have to decide which platforms to prioritize. Moreover, in some markets, streaming may have already reached peak penetration. Netflix may need to compete in regional markets if it wants to continue to grow.

However, none of these threats is anything new. There’s a reason why Netflix is famous for its aggressive investment in original content. It understands its vulnerabilities and leverages its strengths (in this case, tons of cash at hand) to offset them.

Although you might not have coffers the same size as Netflix’s, you can certainly learn from its example. If you understand what makes your business unique and what the current landscape in your field is, you will have a much easier time outmaneuvering the competition.


Every business has unique strengths and weaknesses. Knowing what those are is vital if you want to seize opportunities and assess threats effectively. The better you know your brand, the higher-quality products, and services you’ll be able to deliver.

The concept of a SWOT analysis is simple, and involves just four steps:

Break down your strengths.
Layout your weaknesses.
Define your opportunities.
Consider your threats.
Do you have any questions about how to conduct a SWOT analysis for your brand? Let’s go over them in the comments section below!

Article thumbnail image by Wan Wei /

Shared to VMG on February 18, 2020, by  in Marketing – Will Morris is a staff writer at WordCandy. When he’s not writing about WordPress, he likes to gig his stand-up comedy routine on the local circuit.