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What is the Difference Between Pay Per Click Traffic and Organic Traffic?

Sep 7, 2008
The core difference between Pay-Per-Click traffic and organic traffic is the cost incurred by the advertisers. With a Pay-Per-Click program, the advertiser has to pay each time a user clicks on the Pay-Per-Click advertisement, whereas with organic traffic, all leads and clicks that are generated are free.

About Pay-Per-Click Advertisements

Pay-Per-Click (also referred to as PPC) advertisements can become expensive and the advertisers' campaign can quickly fail if not managed correctly. However, three main points to keep in mind with a PPC program are:

1. It is an excellent marketing tool that can create immediate buzz around a product or service
2. It is fairly inexpensive in comparison to traditional advertising
3. It is very flexible and can be short or long term depending on your immediate needs.

There are several key initiatives that an advertiser should execute with the initial set up of a PPC campaign and while managing the campaign:

* Ad Creative - It is absolutely necessary to have a well-written and focused advertisement creative. For example, you do not want to advertise that you are selling blue penguins for $19.99 when on you landing page the actual cost is $26.99 and the blue penguins are actually green.

*Landing Page - Having a well thought out landing page before setting up your PPC campaign is essential. A landing page should have the content related to your online advertisement. If your ad reads 'Cheap Blue Penguins - Wholesale prices, free shipping on all Blue Penguins before Winter Time', and the page that the visitor lands on is selling Hot Pink Penguins. The result will be a quickly wasted click, poor campaign performance and a low conversion rate.

*Call to Action - Your call to action should be very prominent and located above the fold of the page. Too many times, we have seen a call to action that is located well below the fold where the user has to scroll down to click on the call to action button. By having the user scroll through to the bottom of the page to find the call to action makes it inconvenient and ineffective.

* Testing - Test!Test!Test! Never stop testing. Always test new ad creatives, landing page creatives, and call to actions locations. The difference between a successful Pay-Per-Click campaign and an unsuccessful campaign maybe due to lack of testing.

About Organic Traffic

Organic website traffic is visits that come from an unpaid means. Free traffic is always good traffic, but can be difficult acquiring. With Pay-Per-Click traffic, it is fairly simple to obtain traffic, setup an account, write an ad, research and add keywords to the campaign and point the ad to a landing page. Voila!, You have traffic!

How Do I Increase Organic Visitors to My Website

* Submit your site to website to Google, DMOZ and Yahoo. You want to let the search engines know that there is a new site out there to be indexed.
* Make sure that all the pages have fresh and relevant content. Search Engines love websites that add fresh and unique content. Nothing is worse than having a stagnant site with outdated content.
* Duplicate content is a "no-no" with Search Engines. Search engines will penalize you for having duplicate content from other sites or having the same information located on several webpages.
* Make sure the code is clean. If the Search Engine Spiders have a difficult time going through your site, chances are you will get spidered less.
* Getting Backlinks - The more links to your website the better. Google ranks you based on how many links you have going to your site. It similar to a popularity contest, the more Backlinks (votes) you have, the more weight Google will put on your site.
* Optimized Press Releases - One of the best ways to get long lasting exposure is by writing Optimized Press Releases. A well written, and Optimized Press Release must be newsworthy and most importantly, target a few keywords relating to your business.
* Search Engine Optimization - Recently there has been tremendous buzz about the benefits Search Engine Optimization. The quick run down of SEO is the continual modification of your website to increase amount of quality traffic to your website by modifying the keywords and content.

Choosing between Pay-Per-Click and Search Engine Optimization

Both methods of advertising have benefits and drawbacks. Depending where you want to spend your time and money is where you should be focusing your online marketing efforts. Most companies that have successful online marketing campaigns will focus on both PPC campaigns and an SEO campaign. PPC will yield immediate results, while Search Engine Optimization, takes some time to see the results, but will continue to bring you results for the long term.
About the Author
Dakota Bressler writes for the Search Engine Marketing and Optimization Specialist for .COM Marketing; an Orlando internet marketing and Orlando web design firm that specializes in helping clients successfully market their websites through targeted SEO, optimized web content and optimized press releases.
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