Facebook is a useful social networking site for promoting your online shop. I've had a Facebook business page for about 7 months, and found it to be an effective and cost effective (free!) way to get the word out about Dalkullan Jewelry.
After I set up my FB business page (it's also called a fan page, it's the same thing) I fanned myself. Yes, I know, a bit pathetic, but then I can see everything that the future fans are receiving, which I find helpful. I like to know what my fans are getting on their personal page about my shop. And at least I had one fan, lol.
The next step was letting all my Facebook friends know about my business page, so they could fan me if they liked. I actually set up a new personal page to use to create my business page from, instead of using my Facebook page I'd set up a couple years earlier to keep in touch with family and friends. I want to keep my personal and business doings separate, but that's just me. And I like to use a picture of my jewelry for my profile picture on my business page.
I started putting up a link to my FB fan page on the promo section in the Etsy Forum, and got some fans that way. I also have a link in my profile at my Etsy shop. Having a contest, in which each fan who got a friend to become a fan could each win a pair of earrings, was a successful way to add fans.
Gradually people will start fanning because they see your work on a friend's page, and it appeals to them. Also mentioning the fan page on your blog and using twitter to promote it are good ways to garner new fans.
So, now you have some fans, what's next? Here's my list of FB does and don'ts. This is just my opinion, please comment and add your own!
1.) Try to post only once or twice a day. People are following other businesses, and their friends and family, and don't want you to monopolize their news feed.
2.) Try to read and comment a few times a week on the businesses you are following. Nobody likes to feel ignored. :) It's fun to see what others are doing, and being an encourager is always a happy thing!
3.) Remember, it's very easy to block someone, so it looks like you're following them, but you actually don't receive any updates from their page. The more spammy stuff you post, the more likely this unhappy event will occur.
4.) Your page is promoting your business, keep it professional. There are those who are offended by swearing, off-color comments, etc.
How effective is FB on getting sales? I don't have a lot of sales, so I've got a pretty small data pool to extrapolate from. But I have made sales to my Facebook Fans, and I've made purchases from businesses I'm a fan of. Businesses I heard of only because they had fanned me, and I fanned them back.
Facebook is free, it doesn't take a lot of time, and it is a useful marketing tool. I would certainly recommend it to anyone looking to increase their online sales.
Thanks so much for stopping by. Wishing you happy crafting!