To Pay or Not to Pay for Website Traffic

— November 10, 2016

Does Your Business Need to Invest in Paid Website Traffic?

to-pay-or-not-to-pay-for-website-trafficI am a believer in building your online presence organically with social media, which includes blogging and is a slower process.

For anyone who wants to jump start their business – using paid traffic sources, the opposite of SEO, is a great solution.

However, if you have never paid for traffic before getting started this may be a little daunting; and, you can get caught spending more than you think you will pay. This article will cover the basics of what you can expect when starting out with paid traffic for the first time.

Google Adwords At Top Of The List For Paid Advertising (Hannapin Marketing)

First you want to understand what paid traffic methods are available. Some of the top ones that you may recognize are Google Adwords, Bing Ads, Banner Ads, Facebook Ads, Instagram Ads and LinkedIn Ads.

As you will see many of the top social sites are offering their own advertising methods. These methods only apply to their sites so remember this, but when you think about how large Facebook and LinkedIn are, you can see that these are a great traffic source to tap into.

According to a study from eMarketer, sponsored posts have proven to be just as effective if not more than traditional marketing methods:


With any paid advertising method you will have to set up an account with the program that you choose to use. Along with this you will have to provide them with a payment method for your ads. This is normally a credit card so you need to have one that you can use for your business. It is advisable to have a credit card that is dedicated to business expenses – easier for doing your taxes at the end of the year.

Inside your account you will have the ability to create your ads and then set up a limit for what you want to spend each day. This is very important and will ensure that you don’t overspend on ads that aren’t working. Here are a few suggestions to help you get starting in paid advertising:

Know your keywords

To create a good ad you will want to perform keyword research for your site. You should have a good idea of what keywords you are targeting. To see which keywords your visitors are using use Google Analytics or log into the Awstats section of your web hosting company. Then use these keywords in your ads to get even more traffic.

It’s important to use search terms that are relevant to both your brand message and the content you are creating. Choose topics that your audience is seeking after online in order to improve your conversion results. You can learn a lot about your community by studying their conversations on social media as well as the questions being asked in forums, social media groups, and Q&A websites:


What is your goal?

You need to have a goal in mind before starting any advertising campaign. Are you looking to create sales, get people to sign up to your email list or to like your Facebook page? These are all great goals and will help deliver more traffic to your site. Use a spreadsheet to keep tabs on your progress and to make adjustments to your campaign(s) as needed.

Here are a few steps to help you formulate this process:

  • Narrow down your target market to who they are, where they live, their income status, etc.

  • Set realistic expectations of how you can effectively reach your community.

  • Keep your brand message clear and consistent — do people know right away what you offer and why?

  • Create a deadline for each campaign in order to keep the marketing flow current with the latest trends and industry changes.

Set a budget

It’s not expensive to begin generating traffic with paid ads — for example, a sponsored post can be as little as $ 5.00 to start. Before you begin an advertising plan determine what is in your operating costs first and choose the platforms that are most beneficial for your target market.

In order to keep your costs low you will need to track your organic methods first to determine what types of posts and tweets are being responded to the most by your audience. Once you have done this work you can move onto choosing the different pricing options according to the social network of choice, and the specific audience you are advertising to. Keep your first campaigns short so that you can ditch the ones that are not performing well.

Create a great design

Both Facebook and Instagram work together to create eye-catching ads with either images or video. Be sure to choose relevant and high-quality visuals that project a clear message to your audience. Too much text can cause them to leave your ad right away. Use bold headlines that grab their attention and compel them to want to know more.


Balance it out with organic methods

You don’t want to put all of your efforts into just paid advertising. With a balanced approach of fresh, original content and organic growth on social media through meaningful interactions you can increase your growth while building relationships with your community. Referral marketing is still important, and a brand that offers only advertising can be soon forgotten in a people-driven social media atmosphere.

These are the basics your business will need to get started with using paid traffic sources. Be sure to try different formats, messages, and analyze your results in order to get the most out of your advertising dollar.

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Author: Susan Gilbert

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