There’s nothing new about paid traffic - it’s been around for a couple of decades.
But why isn’t everyone using it?
Does it deserve a share of your marketing budget?
Or should you ignore ‘website traffic for sale’ offers like the plague?
Read through this article and you’ll find out exactly when (and why) paid traffic can help your online business raise awareness, SERP ranking, market research, other campaigns and even conversions.
What’s Good About Paid Traffic?
Deciding to buy website traffic is often a last-ditch attempt to save a failing online business. And because of this, paying for a steady stream of visitors to land on your site is often brushed aside. Eyebrows raise when the topic is approached in company meetings. Web traffic for sale ads are passed over without even registering the information they provide.
After all, traffic referred from a large, popular, high traffic site is a waste of time, right?
The same type of traffic one gets through guest posting, publishing studies, commenting on forums, getting reviewed and managing multiple social media profiles?
What many online enterprises fail to recognise is that buying traffic from other websites is the equivalent of the above, recognised, approved strategies.
So paid traffic can be good - very good - for your business.
You just have to know EXACTLY how and when to use it.
When Don’t I Buy Traffic For My Website?
Paid traffic should NEVER be used as duct tape. As this is often how it is used, it’s no wonder website traffic providers are looked at with suspicion.
It’s also no wonder paid traffic fails to meet expectations in these cases.
When don’t you want to generate traffic?
- When you own or manage a low-quality website, you won’t benefit from ANY traffic-generating strategy.
- When you sell a low-quality service or product, or a good product at inflated prices, you won’t benefit from extra visitors.
- When your customer care department is lacking, and if your business isn’t transparent, more traffic isn’t the solution.
As so many businesses turn to paid traffic sources to remedy one (or all) of the above, it’s easy to understand why reviews are so mixed.
You’re unlikely to come across 5 stars or 1 stars across the board; many marketing agencies and professionals know exactly when to use this form of traffic, and many don’t. And this is mirrored in what they say about it.
The people with the right and realistic expectations are the ones that give the much higher scores.
So what do these happy people use paid traffic for? Let’s go through the different implementations one by one.
Paid Traffic For Brand Recognition
When your online presence is one you can be proud of, and when your hosting solution can handle a surge of interest, there’s no easier way to increase brand awareness than paid referral traffic.
Which marketing strategy can bring hundreds of thousands - even millions - of targeted visitors to your landing pages every … single ... month?
Just one - unless you are a multinational, already famous brand. In which case, brand awareness won’t be your primary goal anyway.
That one strategy is the one we’re talking about today.
Website traffic from a reputable traffic provider.
Design a highly visual landing page with your logo and associated imagery, and order web traffic alongside social media and other ad campaigns, and you’ll make marketing waves with this source.
Because when you order human web traffic, every visitor is a pair of human eyes looking at your logo, your name, your colours, and your principal product or service.
Paid Traffic For Analytics
Another use for paid traffic that is often ignored is its implementation as a source of data for analytics tools.
It is no great secret that paid traffic - especially when completely untargeted - is much less likely to navigate a page or site than organic traffic.
But sheer numbers make a huge difference. Especially in analytics.
Even if only 15% of your referred visitors stay long enough to open another page or navigate round the landing page, that can still lead to thousands of pieces of data. Filter out the ones that don’t interact and you still have plenty of data over.
And by the way, the visitors that don’t stay on the page for 3 seconds or more do NOT negatively affect your SERP ranking. We’ll look at that later on.
Paid traffic therefore provides plenty of scope for A/B testing, especially for smaller businesses or startups with limited visitor numbers where visitor data can be scarce.
Paid Traffic For Conversions
It’s true. Visitors you pay for via a web traffic provider don't convert anywhere near as well as SEO-generated traffic. Paid traffic has a low conversion rate.
But when we look in more detail, this statement doesn’t tell the whole story.
A low conversion rate does NOT mean low conversions - when there are plenty of visitors.
If your SEO strategies generate 5,000 visitors a month with a 10% conversion rate, you get 500 conversions. The money you invest to generate those 5,000 varies from sector to sector.
But what about paying for 200,000 targeted visitors to land on your website over a term of 30 days for a fixed, predictable and low price?
Even with a 1% conversion rate, that’s 2,000 conversions.
The conversion rate is 10 times lower, but conversion numbers are 4 times higher.
To match organic conversion numbers, your paid traffic conversion rate could be as low as 0.25%.
And there’s a big chance the cost of generating organic visitors exceeds that of paid traffic. So it’s worth doing the math.
Of course, the type of conversion makes a difference. Sales are harder to get (using any strategy) than sign ups for newsletters, for example. For many, conversion rates are as simple as navigating a website or giving a thumbs up. Again, design a specific landing page for paid visitors and this source’s conversion rate can exceed all expectations.
Paid Traffic For New Markets
Market research can be expensive. It’s a lot more tricky than selecting a country and age group. And who’s to say that a pet owner isn’t going to buy a computer magazine? Or a sports enthusiast isn’t interested in a chocolate bar?
The beauty of buying highly targeted traffic - age, gender, location (continent, country, and even region/state), AND interests/hobbies - means you can test hundreds of potential markets without high investment costs.
Reputable website traffic providers offer hundreds of niches. From aviation to zoology, you’ll find several that fit your sales funnel.
And apply different landing pages per niche and you’ll maximise the conversion rate from each newly discovered market.
Paid Traffic As A Campaign Partner
Paid traffic works best as part of a team. It can accompany email, SEO, social media, and even print campaigns. Boost your outreach according to the same metrics as your campaign as regards age groups, locations, and interests.
But multiply that outreach by 10, 100, or even 1,000.
And without having to do the legwork. The web traffic provider has already done this for you.
Just be sure your hosting solution can deal with the combination of multiple strategies!
Paid Traffic As An SEO Strategy
All visitors to your website affect the popularity metrics of search engine algorithms. The more popular a website, the higher it rises in the SERPs. Obviously, every marketing department focuses on Google SERPs; this is the search engine of choice for the greatest slice of the international online community.
Contrary to popular belief, a high bounce rate does NOT affect your position on the SERPs. It's impossible for a bot to calculate this correctly - certainly for use in the Google algorithm. In fact, it’s highly unlikely that the Google algorithm uses ANY of the data collected by Google Analytics - a fact that Gary Illyes, a top Google Webmaster Trends Analyst working at Google, has already told us.
While you can see bounce rates in your analytics reports, Google does not use this metric to indicate user experience. In fact, site-wide bounce rates are called vanity metrics - they’re just there for show. Or to be used as a guide to tweak our strategies.
With this in mind, it doesn’t matter if a large percentage of your paid traffic exits the page without interacting. At least, it doesn’t matter to Google. Editing your landing pages and making it tempting (and easy) to navigate can help increase conversions, but even when testing phases keep bounce rates phenomenally high, you don’t need to worry about Google fines.
So if paid traffic doesn’t damage your SERP ranking, will it boost it?
If your website generates 1,000 organic visitors a month, paying for a monthly web traffic plan of 2 - 5,000 extra visitors will make your website look 2 - 5 times more popular than it actually is.
If you regularly visit social media, you’ll see this in another type of paid visitor service - the buying of likes, follows, and subscriptions. Many not-so-interesting posts have extremely high numbers of likes. This is probably through the use of paid services that give a temporary boost.
Apply this method to a very interesting post, however, and the results are very different. Such posts go viral, beginning with the implementation of paid likes that trigger interest in other, non-paid sources. As long as the content is worth viewing, this strategy pays off.
And this is why so many marketing departments pay for monthly influxes of paid visitors. The high numbers raise a company up the Google search page ranks. This increases visibility and triggers interest in other, non-paid sources.
If your marketing agency doesn’t list paid traffic as a viable strategy for your business, perhaps your website, content, product or service isn’t attractive enough.
Don’t Knock It Until You’ve Tried It!
All of the above show how paying for website traffic can help your business take off and stay in the air.
When you run an online service that believes in transparency, good value for money, excellent customer services, and authoritative content, the more people that see you, the better.
And where these people come from doesn’t really matter … unless your business is purely conversion-based.
Most of us know that asking for high conversions without giving anything back (great content, user interaction, free tools and downloads, wonderful imagery, great prices etcetera) is a lovely, impossible dream.
But when you offer all the perks, the next problem is visibility.
And that’s where paid traffic truly shines.
In combination with your other strategies, buying high volume website traffic can solve the visibility issue. And when you buy from a 100% human visitor providing service, everyone that lands on your site is a potential conversion.
In one sentence?
There’s no dark side to paying for traffic when you run an honest, interesting online business!