There are different sorts of Facebook buttons for your website or blog. They aren’t interchangeable because they serve distinct purposes. I regularly notice the wrong Facebook button in the wrong spot.
The two main goals with Facebook buttons (which require different setups) are:
- To convert a user of your website or blog into a Facebook follower.
- To encourage a user to share information from your website or blog (but most likely, just your blog).
The buttons on your homepage, typically in the upper right-hand corner, should always be “follow” buttons, not “sharing” buttons. I frequently see those buttons as “share” buttons, so you’re essentially prompting people to say, “Hey, check out this website/blog I found!” on their Facebook pages. That may not sound so bad, but it’s a missed opportunity. For one, it’s usually not specific enough to grab the attention of Facebook friends. Secondly, the person clicking the button probably did so because they wanted to follow you. You didn’t give them that option, so you just lost an opportunity to convert a visitor into a follower.
Use the share Facebook button to encourage readers to share specific types of content, as you can see we do here on the left side of the screen. So if you know those following you on Facebook would find this article helpful, you’d click on the link to the left, and then post it to your Facebook wall. But if you want to follow us, then you click on the Facebook button up top.
If you’re a small business, check your Facebook buttons right now, and make sure you’re leading your readers to the right action!