Question : Should we use a facebook page for selling?
I am working with a client that has four existing retail stores in the food/beverage industry. they are now launching a License/Distributorship. Corporate will be doing markeitng, brand promotion and some limited advertising. This will include maintaining a corporate website with store locations.
There is a desire to sell gift cards and branded material like t-shirts from the corporate website as well. the assumption was there there would be a "shop" on the primary website where people could purchase these items. Shopping Carts like Magento were being considered.
One alternative idea was to put the ecommerce function on a Facebook Fan Page. This would leverage the social markeitng platform to promote the business, build individual affinity with the brand, and make the eccomerce very easy (for a client with limited technical skill or desire to acquire).
The concern by one of the principals involved in the business development is that this is just not professional and will harm efforts to develop the new brand. The individuals is "older" and not a social media user. The target audience for the store is 25-45 affluent couples on a date.
Bottomline: Are the benefits of having a Facebook Fan-page store sell the product offset by the less-than-professional image?
I've never heard of any image/perception issues with a company operating a store on their Facebook page. Some major brands (e.g. BWM, Lacoste, Walmart) have tried it.
However, there are other issues with Facebook stores:
If you have a real store too, there is nothing against it. I would not trust you a penny if you have no web presence or a real webstore out there.
Besides, I don't like facebook anymore and I would surely miss it these days.
Anyway, I know some people who have pages, but none of them makes bucks out of it. But well, this can be bad luck, others may think different.