We will be exploring all of the different areas of traffic that your website can obtain. This month we will be looking at paid search traffic. Both what it is and how it can benefit your site.
Paid traffic is what is often referred to as “pay per click traffic” or “Paid Search” and comes from users of various Search engines making search queries. On a search engine like “Google” paid traffic listings exist above the Organic Search and Local Search results. On a Site like Google the paid search results can exist at the first 3 or 4 results and can also exist on the right hand side depending on the popularity of the keyword. Paid Search originated in the late 1990s with sites like Goto.com and Findwhat.com (since defunct) which would offer users who paid the highest per click amount the top positions on their search engines. This was perfected by Google in the early 2000s with a more reasonable approach of both page relevancy as well as the bid a company was willing to pay per click. This improved the search results users would get as opposed to the original pay for highest rating models. Currently Google and Yahoo/Bing have the most successful pay per click programs.
Pay Per Click has many benefits for a website. It gives website users the ability to monetize their sites once they know that a certain visitor will cost a certain amount they can estimate their profit on that user. For instance if you bid on the word “cook book” and are selling a $50.00 book and you know that every 20 people who click on your ad purchase a book then you’d be able to estimate what per click amount you could bid to still make a profit. Another positive of Pay Per Click traffic is that it allows you to target lower volume keywords that might be hard for you to achieve via organic rankings. You can also capture brand new traffic that would be hard to plan for 3 or 4 months out like you would have to do with Organic optimization. For instance if a new product comes out you would have to wait weeks or months for a search engine to pick up the new product page organically but you can put a paid ad up immediately and start gaining the traffic. Also Google Adwords has a very sophisticated way to get local traffic. So this can be ideal for local businesses like lawyers or plumbers who only want clients in a small city radius.
A website owner can create their own pay per click account rather easily and most Search Engines like Google provide customer service now to help assist you in creating your account. You can also hire an SEO company to assist with your setup and management of your account. In most cases Google will incentivize you with a certain amount of free Ad spend after you’ve started your account and spent a certain amount. Setting these accounts up is fairly easy but avoiding the pitfalls along the way is hard. In most cases people who hire professionals to run and setup their Adwords account have more success in the long run with Pay Per Click Marketing. No matter which way you decide to go, it does require a bit of work to create your ads, pick your keywords, choose your landing pages and set your bids.
Overall Paid Traffic is a great source of traffic for new and established websites. They offer new websites immediate access to a large customer base looking for their items. Established websites can use this traffic as well to help sell more of their products or services. For most websites Paid Search is an essential part of their traffic strategy.