In this episode we deep dive into traffic! (Visitors to your website)
Find out the different traffic methods that are available to get you found online.
Learn the pros and cons of each method.
Plus the golden rules of deciding what traffic source is best for your business.
[00:56] Why we need Traffic
[01:37] Two types of traffic
[02:59] State for the record
[03:31] Is one traffic source better than the other?
[03:47] Types of paid traffic
[05:05] Is organic traffic really free?
[07:47] The pros and cons of paid traffic
[09:50] The pros and cons of organic traffic
[13:12] Which traffic source is right for you?
[14:09] SEO companies are out of date
[14:49] Action Points
Welcome to episode five of The Marketing Mayhem Show, proudly brought to you by Rapid SEO Expert. I'm your host, Shane Walker, and in today's episode we're going to talk about traffic.
Now, for those that are familiar with our work, you'll know that our first core principle is to get you found online. To be able to get found online, we need to have visitors to our website and visitors to our website is defined as traffic.
Why You Need Website Visitors
So why do we need to get these visitors to our website? Well, as a business or a website owner. You deserve to get a positive return on your online spend.
Whether you're paying for ads, paying for SEO or whether you're investing time, writing your own content.
Or even if you're just paying for the cost of a website, be it a development team, hosting, etc. You deserve to get a positive return on that time and effort or money that you're spending.
And no visitors to your website equals no sales and that equals no money to you.
So it's very important that we get these visitors to our website. Now, as I said, visitors for the purpose of this are defined as traffic.
Two Types Of Website Traffic
Now, traffic can be broken down into two major groups and there's numerous subsets within each group.
You've got online traffic and you've got offline traffic. We're really not going to go very much into offline traffic today for the purposes of this podcast.
But if for instance, you had a store or a shop, front traffic could be someone that actually walks into your store just to have a look at your products and services. Or it could be someone that gives you a phone call.
You could be classing that as traffic. But what we're going to go through today is online traffic.
Now, online traffic can be broken down into two main groups. There's paid traffic and there's organic traffic.
What Is Paid Traffic
Paid traffic is something that you actually pay a cost for a particular action. For instance, it might be for someone to click on a link to go to your website. Or to view a video or something like that. There is actually a cost that can be associated with an individual action.
What Is Organic Traffic
Organic traffic is something where you're not specifically paying for a particular action. It might just be that you're getting visitors to your website from the search engines.
And we'll go more into that in a moment, but organic traffic is essentially something that doesn't have a direct cost associated to it.
So before we delve right into it and before you all start writing in.
There are many types of traffic. There is paid traffic and there is free traffic. And I want to state for the record that any type of traffic can work if it's applied correctly.
It also can be a disaster if it's not applied correctly.
However, as an SEO practitioner I am biased to SEO as it is a great medium to long term strategy as I will go through soon. So before you start writing in and saying, oh, this traffic source is best, this traffic source is better than the other......
In my opinion, there is no traffic source that is better than another. It all depends on what your goals are and whether you apply it correctly. Because if you don't apply it correctly, it's going to flop and it's gonna cause you a lot of pain and grief.
Types Of Paid Traffic
So let's have a look at the types of paid traffic.
Now when it comes to paid traffic, there are two major players in the game. One is Facebook, one is Google.
At present, Facebook has approximately 20 % of all online ad spend worldwide. Whereas Google is twice that amount at approximately 44 % of all online ad spend.
Now, it's also interesting to note that Facebook and Google combined have approximately 25 % of all worldwide ad spend. And I'm talking everything, print, media, tv, etc.
Twenty five percent of that market is now being cornered by either Google or Facebook. So they're really the two major players that we have.
Now. there are other types of paid advertising platforms. Most of your major platforms have native ads within them where you can sign up for their advertising account.
This allows you to place ads directly on their platform. Examples of these are Instagram, which again is owned by Facebook, YouTube, which is owned by Google. Linkedin is another one where you can place ads on the Llnkedin platform straight through Linkedin itself.
So there are other types of paid advertising, but the two major players in the game, are definitely Facebook and Google.
Types Of Organic Traffic
Now we will have a look at the organic traffic.
By definition, organic traffic is something that you can't directly associate a cost with. So you're not actually paying per click or paying per impression.
However, a lot of times organic traffic is referred to as free traffic and that is really a misconception because when it comes to the online world, nothing is free.
When you have organic traffic, you're either going to be paying for it with time or you're going to be paying for it with money in some way.
Paying in the way of an SEO campaign or in the way of content creation or something like that.
But there is no such thing as free traffic that just comes out of the air. There's a trade off somewhere.
So the first type of organic traffic is SEO, search engine optimisation, and that is where you show up in the search results.
The top organic search engines around are YouTube. Which is becoming more and more popular as time goes on, and you've got Google, which is the benchmark for search traffic or for organic SEO results.
There are lots of other search engines around. Some medium players are Bing and Yahoo, but when it comes to the likes of Google, they really pale into insignificance.
If you're going to do any sort of an organic campaign, you really want to be planning it for Google and YouTube.
Because what works for them, will work with the others. But it doesn't necessarily work the opposite. If you optimise, or get everything ready for Yahoo is not necessarily going to meet the criteria of the Google algorithm.
And given that search engines like Google and YouTube get the majority of people searching on them. They're the ones that you really need to concentrate on.
Now, you can also get organic traffic from social media.
For instance you might do a post on one of your social media properties and that will get shown to different people through the newsfeed.
It could get shared around by people viewing it, so you're picking up organic traffic via social media that way.
Another type of organic traffic is referral traffic.
Referral traffic is where a website directly links to you. For instance, you might have created a great piece of educational content.
You might have a really good resource on your website or your website may be regarded as a subject matter expert and industry authority in your particular area.
So people are naturally going to link to your website or your content because they want to share that great resource with their viewers or their readers.
So that is referral traffic. So you can get organic traffic, via referral as well.
The Pros And Cons Of Paid Traffic
Now what we'll go through now is the pros and cons of both organic and paid traffic.
So we'll start off with paid traffic. One of the pro's of paid traffic is you get much faster results than organic traffic.
Now, it depends a lot on the size of your budget. But depending on how much you're actually spending in ads each week, you can have test results completed within a week.
And you can know whether that ad is resonating with the customer and whether it's actually going to run at a profit and you can keep going straight away.
So you can see results within a week of running the add.
It can also be done on a much smaller budget than organic traffic such as SEO. If you have a smaller budget, you can get started with paid traffic for as little as $50 a week.
So that really helps the smaller businesses or the new startups. But the only problem with that is if you're only spending approximately $50 a week, it's going to take longer to get the hard data to see if this campaign is going to work.
You won't necessarily have tangible results within a week.
Some of the cons of paid traffic. If it's not done right, you're add might not be reaching your target market or it might just be a really poor offer.
Then paid advertising can become a really expensive black hole and you can continue to keep pouring money into it for no return.
Another con with paid advertising is that you can get caught in a bidding war. Because the way paid advertising works in general, is that you don't pay a specific price for an ad.
People that want to advertise for that particular term or have their ad shown in that particular place will bid the amount that they're prepared to pay each time it's either shown or clicked on.
For instance, if you have someone there that wants to compete with your keyword. And they say that they are willing to pay $10 per click for that ad to be shown and you're only willing to pay $5.
Well, the only way your ad is going to get shown is if you up your bid to $11.
So you can see how you can get in a bidding war there. And then the person that's competing with you will bid more and it ends up costing you more and more for that particular ad.
So you need to be careful that you don't get caught in a bidding war with your paid advertising.
The Pros And Cons Of Organic Traffic
Now we'll have a look at organic traffic.
One of the pros is that once organic traffic gains momentum it will create an unstoppable flood of traffic to your website.
For instance, with our authority triangle system, we don't try to rank any web page for a particular keyword.
Part of our authority system is that we create topically deep relevant content. What that means is that when we publish content, we made sure that there's at least 2000 words on each particular piece of content that we publish on your website.
That is because of the Google hummingbird algorithm. Now, the Google hummingbird algorithm actually understands the topic of a page, and it understands what the page is about and where it fits in to the general search parameters.
Prior to the hummingbird algorithm. Google could only work out a keyword on a page, so if that word was used a number of times on a page. Google would make the assumption that that particular word was what the page was about.
But the algorithm is now far more sophisticated and smarter and he can understand what that page is about.
It can understand the topic, it can understand where that topic fits in. It might be a sub topic of other topics. So it understands completely what you are writing about.
As a result of that, by creating topically, deep, relevant content, we found that single pages that we put on our blogs and our clients' websites, are now starting to rank for multiple, multiple keywords.
In some instances, up to a hundred different keywords for one particular article.
So that's what I'm talking about with organic traffic where I say that once it gains momentum, it creates an unstoppable flood of traffic.
That is because you're not just getting the search volume for a particular keyword that that page might be about.
You're also getting search volume for the dozens of other keywords that that page is also ranking for, thanks to the hummingbird algorithm.
Some of the cons with organic traffic is, as I said, it takes longer to gain momentum. It is what's considered a medium term plan. If you're investing in an SEO campaign, don't expect results straight away.
It's like a garden. You plant your seeds, you have to tend to them, and then they produce a really nice crop later on.
Organic SEO also needs a budget. Unlike the paid advertising, it can't be done on $20 or $50 a week. You need to have a reasonable budget to get it going.
Another con is that organic traffic from SEO takes hard work. It's not easy. Good SEO takes time and we're long past the days of manipulating the search engine results.
Yes, it is still possible to rank quickly using hacks and tricks, but what you're doing there is only a short term tactic because you're gaming the search engines with a quick fix.
And they're going to wake up to that and come time for the next algorithm change or the next algorithm refresh you're going to be found out and one of two things is going to happen.
Either that hack or that tactic you're using is no longer going to work or worse still, it can get your website penalised and then you're just not going to rank at all.
What Type Should You Choose?
So what should you choose for your business, should you choose paid traffic or should you choose organic traffic?
Well, I can't tell you. That's a decision that you actually have to make because I don't know the exact details of your business and your goals and what it is you wish to achieve.
But the first thing you should look at in making your decision is your budget.
If you only have a small budget, then you're much better off with a paid traffic strategy. Use the paid traffic strategy to get some sales. Then you can take that money from those sales and put it back into SEO.
Once you combine that, you can then start to see your traffic takeoff and really increase the people that are coming to your website. And consequently the sales that you're making on the back end.
If you have a larger budget and you're prepared to wait because SEO takes approximately three to six months before you even start to see a return on your investment, then you may be better off with an SEO campaign.
If you're going to do an SEO campaign, make sure it's not just one that tries to rank you for a single keyword. SEO companies that are doing that these days are way out of touch with what's going on in the industry.
Make sure that your SEO campaign is designed to position you as an industry leader and a subject matter expert, and that it has topically deep relevant content being produced and placed on your website.
That will position you as an industry leader and a subject matter expert.
That way hummingbird will know what's going on and hummingbird will rank you for multiple, multiple keywords.
So that's all we have time for on our traffic episode today.
Your action points from today's podcast are to have a look at your traffic plan.
First off, do you even have one? Or are you just taking the option of, well I have a website. Hopefully people will find me.
If you don't have a traffic plan, you need to start one.
You need to implement a system that will regularly and predictably bring you traffic. So don't just hope and pray.
And if you have one is it meeting your goals? Are you getting a positive return on the investment of either time or money that you are making?
And if you do have a traffic plan in place, make sure that you're continually testing and adjusting where necessary.
So if you would like to have your questions personally answered on a future podcast, what you need to do is you need to download the free anchor podcast app that's available either in the apple app store or on the Google network.
Look up The Marketing Mayhem Show and click leave a voice message.
What will happen is we will receive the message and we will actually add that voice message into one of our podcasts. So your voice will be featured online and we will answer your question in a future show.
Until next time, I'm Shane Walker and we'll talk soon.