The goal of any successful online marketing program is to get the most amount of traffic as possible to your website.
By giving away a high-value product for free, you can capture a high percentage of visitors. This technique is known as “visitor conversion” because it converts visitors into subscribers once they opt-in to your list.
Generally, traffic can be divided into two types: Paid and free.
Among the most popular paid traffic platforms are:
- Buying ads on Google, Facebook and other popular ad providers
- Buying banner ads that appear on the top, sides and bottom of popular websites related to your niche
- Buying lists of subscribers from other Internet marketers
Free traffic marketing techniques include:
- Using social media to find people who are interested in your niche and attracting them to your website
- Participating in niche-related forms and chat rooms, social media pages and other locations
- Creating your own blog and writing regularly about your niche topic (always including a link to your website)
When to Use Paid vs Free Traffic Techniques
If you are just starting out, use free traffic methods until you build your list so it attracts a lot of prospective customers.
Usually, you don’t have much choice. Unless you are have some sort of trust fund or an investor with deep pockets, you aren’t going to have the cash to fund paid marketing strategies up front. Instead, you will need to work your way through the free marketing strategies until you start to build a customer base and start making some serious money with Internet marketing.
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Every time you try something new, regardless of whether it is successful or not, you will have learned something. And the more you learn, the more experienced you will become.
There are very few successful online marketers who are also inexperienced. Most of them have struggled for years, if not a decade or more, learning through their efforts, including their failures.
The same concept holds true in the real world as well. It would be highly unlikely that a corporation would hire somebody to be their CEO fresh out of business school. Even if they did, the value of their stock would most likely plummet because of investor doubts.
Once you start building revenues, you can then reinvest some or all of these revenues into paid traffic methods so that you can build your list even more quickly.
Free traffic methods take longer to gain traction. It can take weeks or even months before you get the response that provide you with enough revenues to fund your paid traffic marketing. This is known as getting your “PhD” – “paying his (or her) dues”.
Paid traffic can provide traffic almost instantly. Using popular platforms as Facebook Ads or Google Ads, you can get your ads in front of highly-targeted prospects immediately. So it’s not unusual for you to attract visitors to your site moments after you launch your paid traffic platforms.
Not All Traffic Techniques Are Created Equal
Some traffic methods work better than others and will bring you results more quickly. The fastest and most cost-effective traffic generation methods are:
- Joint Ventures (Paid)
- Pay-Per-Click, Pay-Per-View and Banner Ads (Paid)
- Social Media/Blogging (Free)
- Forums, Ad Swaps and Safelists (Free/Paid)
Joint ventures are when you and another marketer – usually somebody who already works within your niche – agree to share the costs of promotion equally. Both promote the business to their own lists. Profits are then split down the middle.
Joint ventures can be a good way to double the mileage of your promotional budget for half the cost. Partners can be found in many different places online, especially those that specialize in bringing Internet marketers together.
Buying Paid Ads
When you buy PPC, PPV or banner ads, you deal with an external ad broker, such as Facebook Ads or Google AdWords, and pay to have ads sent to high-target web users.
With PPC, you pay only for those who click through to your pages.
With PPV and banner ads, you pay for a certain number of impressions, or pages on which your ad will appear.