Career Advice

Free vs. Paid Traffic Methods: Which Ones Are Worth Your While?

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In the majority of cases, if you want to make money online, you need to have a website or at least a landing page to get started. It could be for your products, your entire store, or just a service you’re offering. Either way, you need to find the best ways to bring an audience to your table so that they can see what you’re offering. The real question is to whether you should go for free or paid traffic for affiliate marketing. Here’s what you should know about the differences.

What Is Free Traffic In Digital Marketing?

When it comes to link building services, the first place most people look is to free traffic. This is basically spreading the news of what you have to offer by “word of mouth” on the Internet. No money is exchanged in order to attract your potential customers.

The real question is to whether you should go for free or paid traffic for affiliate marketing. Here’s what you should know about the differences.Click To Tweet

Some of the best examples of free traffic include:

  • Using SEO terms so that your website shows up in search engine results
  • Notifying potential customers through e-mail about your products/what you have to offer
  • Using social media to garner interest and encouraging people to use your affiliate links to get special deals
  • Internet forums are also a good place to spread information about your business

What Is Paid Traffic In Digital Marketing?

Paid traffic is when pay for ads of your products to be displayed on other websites. You can choose to go with an agency or you can become an affiliate advertiser yourself. The three models of paid traffic include cost per click (you get paid every time someone clicks on your ad), cost per mille (you pay for every 1000 views your ad gets), and flat rate (you purchase an ad spot for a set price for a set amount of time). The best examples of paid traffic include:

  • Ad Exchange platforms
  • Adwords
  • Social media advertising

What Are The Advantages and Disadvantages To Both?

When it comes to free traffic, the best advantage is that it’s free. Other advantages include is that it’s not stressful to set up, the results are permanent, and it’s good for brand building because it’s done through word of mouth. The downsides to free traffic is that it takes a lot of time and effort, it’s slow to set up, there are some hidden costs involved, and it can be unpredictable in its results.

For paid traffic, the advantages include having full control over who sees your ads and content, the targeting is more accurate, the results are instant, there are measurable efforts. The downsides are that it can be costly and stressful, your reach is limited by your budget, and it requires a lot of investment and learning to do right the first time.

Determining which one you should go with is dependent on what your budget is, how much time you have to invest, and the state of your business; new and small businesses tend to benefit most from free traffic to build up their base before moving on to paid traffic.


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