Get Website Traffic From Traffic Brokers, Not Search Engines
You've worked really hard building links, submitting articles, and participating in some pretty sophisticated optimization techniques. Where does it get you? Maybe nowhere. One of the best, and most well-known, Adsense advertisers recently got a sudden wake up call when his website traffic took a nosedive. His primary source of traffic? Organic search from Google.
The Fall of Tim Carter
Tim Carter's Askthebuilder.com used to be Google's golden child. He was the model of everything Google could be to webmasters. He had a firehose of traffic turned on his site, he was making an incredible amount of money from Google's Adsense program, and he was providing really cool how-to articles and videos for free. Even if you weren't interested in home improvement, Carter's videos were pretty entertaining.
After Panda and Penguin, however, Carter's reported income fell from $1,400 per day to about $70, and his traffic numbers went into a tailspin - from 60,000 per day to just 8,000. The mighty Google giveth, and it also taketh away. Of course, anyone who relies on Google's organic traffic is really setting himself up for failure.
Google Controls the Traffic
The real problem with organic traffic is that you don't control the traffic flow, Google does. Even if you get everything right, you could still be weeded out of the index due to "low quality" content - a term that has a shifting definition depending on the year and algorithm update. Is Google wrong for slapping Carter's site? Of course not. It's Google's index. it can do whatever it wants. People don't have a right to Google's referral traffic. However, webmasters should take this as a cue: don't rely on organic traffic.
Carter says it best: "I have learned my lesson. Anybody who builds a business based on the whims of a search engine's algorithms -- that's a foolish thing to do."
It's pretty devastating to have your entire business cooked by a third party - a company you don't own and control. At least with marketing, you can change up your mail piece or test new headlines. With Google organic search, no such options exist. You either profit from Google's grace or you suffer in obscurity. If your business is built on the back of an unpredictable computer algorithm, you've got huge problems. Learn from Tim Carter. Make a change.
If you haven't been hit by Panda or Penguin, don't get lulled into a false sense of security. You're really just one algorithm change away from losing all of your precious traffic and leads. What will you do then? How will you get traffic? How will you pay the bills?
The obvious solution is to buy traffic. If you're not getting so-called free traffic, one of the easiest ways to get traffic is to buy it. You control the message-to-market and, in some cases, the ad's placement. If you're looking to diversify your traffic away from big G, there are plenty of options so don't think you have to use Google's ad platform (it's gotten pretty expensive, anyway). What are your options? Why, traffic brokers of course.
Traffic brokers are companies that help push traffic to your site using a variety of methods. Pop-ups, pop-unders, redirected traffic, traffic exchange, and even pay-per-click. Media buys are another great option (i.e. banner ads). If you have a reliable broker, CPM (cost per thousand impressions) or CPV (cost per view) can be a very affordable, and high value, alternative to fixed-cost banner ads. The method that's going to work best for your site will be determined by testing. Yes, testing. It's a dirty word, but get used to it. It's what old-school direct marketers had to do before there was an Internet. It's time to rediscover the only real method of generating leads: direct marketing.