Is traffic on a social media site worth as much as traffic on a company Website? Marketers need to figure out the answer to this question, as big brands such as Coca-Cola and Oreos are seeing more visitors to their Facebook pages than their websites.
The table below shows the number of “fans” big brands have accumulated, including their daily growth rate. Cocoa-Cola has 10.7 million fans with a daily growth rate of 96,000. This means that 96,000 new visitors are going to Coke’s Facebook page. In contrast, the company’s website has seen a 40% decrease in unique visitors over the course of a year. The same is true for Oreo brand, which is the number 3 brand on Facebook with 8.7 million “likes” and growing at a rate of 71,000 new fans a day. The U.S. traffic of their website, NabiscoWorld.com, has decreased from 1.2 million in July 2009 to 321,000 in July 2010.
Taking a look from the consumer end of things, a recent survey by digital consultancy Beyond, found that 23% of consumers prefer receiving information from brands via Facebook, instead of a brand’s website (21%) or company blog (3%). Marketers are supporting this movement through increased promotion of Facebook pages over websites. For example in France, certain brands such as Orangina and Sony sign their TV commercial with a “facebook.com/nameofthepromotion”. Other brands such and Ben&Jerry have announced they will simply stop emailing, using Facebook newsfeed instead.
In conclusion, it seems Facebook is no longer increasing traffic to company websites, but absorbing it instead. This makes marketers wonder whether their brand websites will disappear and if there will still be a need for an official website in five years. Will users still visit company websites or will they only use Facebook and apps to check news and offers?