Facebook Tab vs Mini Sites

I get asked this quite a lot, what’s the difference between the two? Which one should we be doing?
Brands will often say ‘I don’t want to take my users out of Facebook, I want to keep them on our page’.

Let me just clarify something really quick for you.

  1. Facebook users generally will not go to a brands page, your content will only ever be seen in their NewsFeed.
  2. Facebook tabs don’t work on mobile phones

Now, if you understand that, users will see your content in their NewsFeed and if the content is inspiring they’ll click on the link and go to where ever the link takes them.
At that stage it doesn’t matter if you take the user to a mini site or a Facebook tab, they just want to know more. As tabs don’t work on mobile and most users are consuming Facebook content on mobile you will need a mini site for this.

If the Facebook tab is not a competition, then I will always advise to build a mini site.

But what if it is a competition you ask…

Facebook Tab Competition

Kerastase Facebook Tab

These can be quick and easy to set up as there are quite a few off the shelf platforms you can buy.

They’re cheap as they’re easy to set up, but they do come with limitations as you’re constrained to what the platforms can and cannot do. You can use a white label version, but if you’re heading down that path you should be building a mini site.

A great Australian based company called Peazie offer great value for these out of the box competitions. A few of their products that I have used and worked well are below;

  • Online Form
  • Click and Win
  • Photo Competition

Mini Site

Cotton On Mini Site Competition

These will be more expensive but they allow brands to have no limitations. Generally the user experience will be better and tracking campaign success can be achieved through Google Analytics.

Depending on what your objectives are and what you want the site to do I prefer brands to run all campaigns on mini sites.
I feel as a user the experience is always positive and you’re not relying on a third party to fix any issues, remember we don’t own Facebook so there’s always a risk of them turning off features (tab apps) so mini sites gives brands a little bit more security. Brands will also have more control and transparency with the campaign on a day to day basis.

Mini sites also have the ability to be responsive which for some campaigns is a big aspect of brand experience.

Competition Success

The success of a competition will come down to a few factors:

  1. The prize, the bigger and better it is the more people will enter.
    – Be careful with prizes, as if it’s not on brand you’ll find a lot of people will enter that don’t care for your brand. So your database will be full of quantity but not quality which will have a negative affect on your future communication results (The numbers will be skewed in a negative way less opens, less click throughs etc).
  2. Reach, you need to get this competition in front of as many eyes as you can.
    – Promoted posts, CPC campaigns, in store promotion, staff promotions.
  3.  Is it shareable? Will people that enter share this with their community.
    – They will if there’s an incentive to do so, ‘Share with your friends for extra entries’.


Facebook tab competitions are great if you want something quick, cheap and easy to execute, in most cases this is probably all you need.
If your brand wants to have more control and give the user a better overall brand experience I would advise on a white labeled mini sites.


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