SEO, Social, Banners, and PPC

In the last article I predicted more training courses to emerge about how to drive organic and social traffic to your website, and the decline of the focus on PPC. While this was partially true, banners (aka. media buy) has also been taught in different courses about traffic that came after Ryan’s anti-Google perpetual traffic course. Just to state a fact and clear my position regarding PPC, PPC still works and it will be crazy to drop it from your plans to drive traffic to your sites.

In this article I’ll explain why you need to give some of your time and/or resources to each of the above methods.

PPC is not all about Adwords, there is MSN PPC that reaches searchers on both Bing and Yahoo!. Together they account for 31% of all searches on the Internet. That’s almost one third of all the search traffic and it will be crazy to ignore it.

On both Google and MSN PPC platforms there are some rules that you need to consider in order to get your campaigns to be profitable. First it’s not a good idea to direct link on Google and MSN. With the increasing competition and the elevating bids in all niches, there is little to be made per click. The best strategy is to increase your life value of each visitor to your website, and that’s by building a relationship with them on your OWN site through your newsletter.

Direct linking still works on other PPC sources because they are still cheaper, although fraudulent clicks occur more frequently than on Adwords and Adcenter. That’s only after you spend some money to test and weed out traffic sources that don’t convert.

Media buys, or banners, are still working. As I mentioned in the past particle, the banner that looks like a banner is useless. The eyes are trained on ignoring those rectangles with graphics in them. What works now is those banners that look like pictures inserted in the text, and text-only banners. There also other banners that are graphical and interactive, like those with really funny or weird graphics (multiple ways to see the same picture). It’s also worth mentioning that banners inventory is way bigger than all PPC clicks combined.

There is also PPV (pay per view) that works in some niches when you target certain demographics, but like PPC, the competition is getting higher and it’s getting harder to make profit with direct linking. Again it’s time to build lists with PPV traffic.

The above paid sources of traffic are supposed to be the main focus of serious businesses because it’s the only way to precisely predict how much traffic you’ll get and consequently how much money you can make. This is necessary if you are running a business, not enjoying a hobby.

SEO and social traffic have their own advantage: it’s perpetual. Say you write an article or upload a video on social media now and it starts sending you traffic shortly. As long as the article is there the traffic keeps coming (theoretically). So the time or money you spend on writing articles or posting on social media is a long term investment.

This type of traffic, let’s collectively call it “non-ad” traffic, is the only traffic that works with sites that depend heavily on advertising revenue, like Adsense.

So to clear up FOMT’s position, it’s not wise to rely on only one source of traffic. Paid traffic is important so that you know what to expect and do your calculations more precisely. Organic traffic is also important as a cushion for protection from the ever changing rules of PPC sources. Also, variation of paid traffic sources protect from losing your source of income if one source disappears or changes rules. The same for organic traffic; social and SEO traffic cushion your business from falling apart when a search engine changes the algorithms or social media change their rules.