The research found that more than half of small businesses don’t spend any money on Facebook ads and of those that do, 62 per cent are dissatisfied, feeling that their money is not being well spent and do not think ads are reaching their target audience. Following this, 87 per cent said that they don’t even use the ‘buy’ button.
Additionally, 54 per cent said they think it seems Facebook wants small businesses to spend money on ads to stay on their platform and 42 per cent are starting to question whether Facebook is helping them grow or not. Perhaps most tellingly, 15 per cent said Facebook is definitely not on the same team as small businesses.
Speaking to Weebly, one small business said “Selling on Facebook is like handing out business cards at a party to people who would rather be socialising”, while another said “Although I may get clicks or likes, it doesn’t always translate to more money coming through the door. My bottom line is, ‘how does this actually affect my income?’”. One small business owner even claimed that “Facebook holds small businesses hostage by only displaying posts on their choice of 10 per cent of my followers unless I pay to “boost” posts.”
Dave Rusenko, CEO of Weebly, said: “It’s clear that Facebook has some work to do winning back the trust of small business owners, who several years ago, used to rely on their platform to grow their customer base. We hear from small business owners that it really comes down to lack of control – small businesses can’t see the bottom line benefit of their Facebook activity, which means they don’t trust the results. Instead, small businesses want control over their online activities like a full ecommerce store, site branding and their email marketing.
It’s telling that 14 per cent of those we spoke to said that Facebook was a starting point, but that they outgrew it. It simply doesn’t offer the freedom and flexibility that a company’s own website does.”