This is the fifth in a six post series, aimed at assisting businesses to effectively run competitions on Facebook. In case you missed them, the other posts are:

Once you understand Facebook’s Promotions Guidelines and the legal requirements for conducting a competition on Facebook, the next step is to find a 3rd party Facebook competition app development tool that best suits your requirements for your competition.

Finding A 3rd Party Facebook Competition App That Bests Suits Your Competition

3rd Party Facebook Competition App Development Tool Options
There are loads of 3rd party app development tools out there that operate with a basic drag and drop interface to make really professional looking competition apps that comply with Facebook’s Guidelines, with no scary coding knowledge required.
Some app development software is ridiculously priced, but there are also some great options out there for a reasonable price or even free!
The tools I am of have used to develop Facebook Competition Apps for my clients include:

Shortstack is a great app for anyone starting out running Facebook competitions, as it is easy to use and they have a great “forever free option” that has most of the functions that a small business would require. Should you wish to unlock any of the additional features, then you can easily upgrade to a paid account down the track without having to learn a new system.
Another great strategy for finding an app that will deliver what you are after is when you see a competition being run by another business and you like how it is set up, then you can see if there is a developer logo up the top or down the bottom of the app and then go and check out that company.
If it is a white label app (in other words there is no evidence of who built it) and you can’t work out who the app was built by, then you can always try sending a private message to the Page Admin and ask what app they used to build it or alternatively who they used to build it if they didn’t build it themself.
If the thought of creating your own app gives you conniptions, then don’t be afraid to get someone to build it for you. It might cost you a couple of hundred dollars, but at the end of the day, it may have taken you a full day to try and set up for yourself and I am a big believer that you have got to put a value on your own time and outsource smartly!

Mobile Friendly Facebook Competition App

With more than 50% of people regularly accessing Facebook via a mobile device these days, the most important thing to think about when choosing a 3rd party app development tool is that it builds both a desktop and mobile version of the app. Shortstack does this and provides you with a smart URL that you can share in status updates and any ads you might run to promote the competition. This smart URL detects what device the Facebook user is using at the time and delivers them the appropriate app.
I find it frustrating and unprofessional when a business shares a link with me to join their competition on Facebook and when I try to gain access from a mobile device I get an error message and can’t gain access to the competition. Even if I was super keen to win their amazing prize on offer, in most cases I never bother to go back and enter when I am on the desktop as it has long slipped my mind.
An alternative to avoid this issue is to have the app embedded on your website, which avoids this issue of the link not working. However, if you intend to promote your competition using Facebook Ads, you will usually have to pay a higher cost per click for sending traffic external to Facebook for people to join rather than if you were keeping your entrants within the Facebook Platform. The number of 3rd party app development tools that enable Like gating when hosted external to Facebook is also limited, so hosting your competition external to Facebook may not be a good strategy if you are trying to increase your number of Page Likes.
Regardless of which tool you choose, it is not going to be effective unless you promote it. In the final post in this series, I outline The Importance Of Promoting Facebook Competitions Like Crazy!