“What if Google went away?”
It’s one of the things I like to say when I speak about the importance of email marketing and list building for bloggers. It’s a deliberately attention-getting phrase, and it matters. Still, too many people ignore it, though, because, LOL, no way Google’s going away, right? What could possibly go wrong?
It matters because if your traffic (and therefore your dependent downstream revenue) depends on Google, and your search engine ranking changes, or you’re dropped from the index, your ability to get new traffic is slaughtered. Without a solid list, your ability to continue to monetize your site and grow your business can be crippled, overnight.
So. In a post about Facebook, why the hell am I talking about Google? To illustrate this simple point: Facebook just “went away” for many blogging businesses. The new design has dramatically reduced Facebook referrals – and subsequent revenues – for many bloggers. Sure, Facebook.com is still there; it just isn’t bringing most people nearly as much traffic and business as it used to. It’s the same idea, different web site. And prior to last week, I bet nobody would have thought that Facebook would “go away” either. Silly Phil, suggesting such a thing.
Yet here we are.
If you’re relying on a third party site – Facebook, Google, Etsy, whatever – and building your business on it, last week’s Facebook changes shows the real risks you are running. I’m not saying don’t use, sell or manage your communities on Facebook; far from it. But pay more attention to bringing your traffic from third party sites to yours – the only one you actually control - and pay MUCH more attention to keeping visitors there and turning them into subscribers.
Remember: Google, Facebook, whatever site you’re “share cropping” on, don’t know you, don’t care about you, and are not in business to help you. They are there to help themselves, and if your business takes the hit while they take care of their business, it is not their problem. It is yours. What are you going to do about it?
Google’s never going away?
Facebook just went away for many small businesses.
Are you ready?