Yesterday Annie posted a Blog with an awesome Edu Byte Video about the new Timeline Display that Facebook plans to enforce, not just for Personal Accounts, but also Business Accounts by March 30, 2012.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could know in advance what direction Social Media giants like Facebook, Twitter and Google+ might be going in the future? But in lieu of the proverbial Crystal Ball, past statistics often sheds a good deal of light on future Return on Investment. Obviously something that all Innkeepers need to keep their thumb on in today’s economy.
Using both Google Analytics to gather referral TRAFFIC, and Intell-a-Keeper to provide actual BOOKING data, I was able to compile the following 2 charts below.
Look at the numbers. And Yes, I realize this is for only 2 months in 2012 vs. all of 2011, but YOU NEED TO NOTICE that even though Innkeepers moved from having a Custom Landing Page (or from having No Landing Page) over to a Facebook APP, the total number of Referrers actually went down just a fraction from 2011 to 2012. And the number of Bookings in the next chart stayed the same. From all indications "It's not about having a Custom or APP Landing page!" Facebook is simply NOT proving to be a quality driver of either Traffic or Bookings.
I purposely pulled this data together today, because I wanted to document information from the time when you could place either a Custom Landing Page or a Facebook App really detailing your properties benefits in front of visitors who were new to your Facebook Page. As we all know those days are soon to be ancient history, with the pending new Timeline Display as of March 30th. Going forward, the best you are going to be able to do with your Custom Landing Page or Facebook App is make it a clickable ICON to the right of the About and Photos information that is fixed in place on the new Timeline Display. Unless, of course, they change their mind, but at this point, it just doesn't seem likely.
Finally, just to put things into perspective from a LIKE standpoint, in my sample above the number of LIKES on these Innkeepers Facebook Pages Ranged from a Low of 30 Likes to a High of 1500 Likes with an Average of 500 Likes.
Don’t rely on my numbers! Go Check your own Google Statistics and see how much traffic Facebook is driving to your site. Then you decide.
We all know that Facebook is very important for your Guest’s Social Interaction, Awareness and Sharing, and for that reason alone you NEED TO BE an active participant!
And I think I'll wrap this post up with a quote from a good friend our ours "Don't drink the Kool-Aid!" ... You simply should not expect Facebook to drive you a large number of Bookings!
Instructions to Determine your Facebook Referrals in Google Analytics
Step 1: Log into www.google.com/analytics/
Step 2: Set your Date Range that you want to check (Upper Right Hand Corner)
Step 3: Click on Audience – Overview
Step 4: Note the Number of Unique Visitors
Step 5: Click on Traffic Sources – Sources – Referrals
Step 6: Type in facebook.com in the search box (Look for magnifying glass)
Step 7: Divide your total Facebook Referrals by our Unique Visitors and this will give you the % of Visitors you had to your site that came from Facebook.
President and Co-Founder
Acorn Internet Services, Inc.
Educating our Industry one Innkeeper at a Time!