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Use Facebook, Don't Let Facebook Use You (with data)

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I stumbled across an article I wrote about 5 years ago, Random Thoughts About Facebook.  I wrote, "It is astonishing how many people use their websites to drive traffic to Facebook rather than the other way around."  Over the years since I wrote that article Black websites have struggled a great deal to get visitors, many have shut down.  The are many reasons for this, but one is that we tend send people to social media, to learn about our work, rather than using social media to send people our own platforms to learn about it.

If we all made an effort to use social media direct others, with links, to websites we liked and supported, those website could benefit from that simple effort. Here is a perfect example;

On November 1st I posted a link on Facebook, to my test site for the new AALBC.comBlack Book Clubs page: http://aalbc.org/bookclubs/.


As you can see 176 people shared this post and that resulted in 943 visitors to the website that day (November 1st).  The vast majority of visitors were new (it is a brand new website), but the average time on the site was 1:22 seconds which is pretty good, less that organic search, but not bad.  There were an average of two pages per session because once you visit the page you have to select a state to find your club.



The platform from which visitors came from is also very telling of a trend; almost 75% of the visitors viewed the page on a cell phone or tablet.  Just 27% visited the site via a desktop computer.  One of my reasons for resdesigning AALBCc.om is to make it mobile friendly, which is also a, essentially, a Google mandate if you want you website to rank in search results.

The Bounce rate (percentage of people who leave after viewing one page) is lower for the desktop user and the number of pages viewed is higher.  Even though the site is designed to accommodate visitors from mobile devices, the site is engaged more deeply by people on desktop computers.  


Desktop versus mobile engagement with this site is something I will continue to examine.  Facebook referrals coming from mobile users make sense; that Facebook mobile app, like snapchat or instagram, is very popular (addictive to some even).  Referral from organic search come from mostly desktop users, but that could be because Google is not referring as many mobile users to the site in their search results.  Again this is one reason I'm redesigning the website.


Sadly, November 1st was the same day that Dr. Derrick Gilbert, a/k/a D-Knowledge, passed away.  Normally, I would have picked this up, because his page received almost 400 visitors that day, through organic search.  That is a lot, in one day for a relatively obscure poet, who had not produced anything new in a decade.  Now I would argue that D-Knowledge would not be obscure in a world with Black media, if fact his passing is newsworthy.  More of us should be familiar with his work

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