Paid vs Organic: How to Supercharge Traffic to Your Website

Driving traffic to a website is easier said than done. One can be a great marketer and still not crack the code of attracting website visitors.

The truth is, there are many different ways to get those clicks—from paid advertisements to organic marketing methods. The challenge for marketers is choosing which strategy works best and offers the most cost-efficient benefits for their business.

In this article, marketers and business owners will discover the most effective ways to kickstart website traffic.

Paid advertisement

For startups or small businesses that want to jumpstart their online traffic, paid advertising will help them start on the right foot. Unlike organic marketing, which takes time to yield results, paid advertising fast-tracks one’s online visibility. It allows web pages to appear exactly where the audience is.

Marketers can bid to appear on top of search engine results. Also known as pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, this method places ads above organic search results when users search for a certain keyword.

Google offers different types of PPC advertisements, including

1. Search ads

These are text ads that appear on Google’s first page of search results. Placed on top of organic search results or at the very bottom of the page, these ads usually target people ready to buy a certain product or service.

2. Display ads

These are image-based ads on emails, websites, apps, or videos. Unlike search ads that appear when users enter a certain keyword, these ads appear to anyone likely to be interested in a product or brand. Thus, display ads are ideal for increasing brand awareness.

3. Video ads

Google-owned YouTube is another search engine that many advertisers use to place their video ads. These ads appear before, during, or after a YouTube video that may have a five-second timer before viewers can skip them. Advertisers can choose a certain demographic based on age, gender, or interests and narrow their ads down to their ideal audience.

4. Shopping ads

These are product-based ads that direct users to a product landing page. This advertising format is ideal for e-commerce businesses that want to boost traffic and sales to their website. These ads appear on relevant keyword searches, such as “best cases for iPhone” or “sunscreen for oily skin,” where users are more likely to buy.

Paid advertising can be overwhelming, especially for starters. This is why many business owners outsource the work to professional PPC advertising agencies that will manage their campaigns for them. It not only frees up their time but also allows them to work on more important aspects of their business.

Search engine optimization (SEO)

seo drive traffic to website
Photo by Oleksandr Pidvalnyi from Pexels

SEO involves a series of on-page, off-page, and technical methods that aim to boost a web page’s ranking on search engines.

Let’s address the elephant in the room: how do search engines rank websites?

Search engines, like Google, Bing, and Yahoo!, depend on a series of ranking factors, including keyword density, backlink quality, on-page optimization, and page speed. They deploy bots that crawl the internet, index websites, and rank them according to these factors.

If a web page does not meet these criteria, Google can decide to place it on the last page of its search results—or not include it at all. But if it does, Google can reward a web page with a sweet spot on its first results page, boosting traffic to that site.

Many marketers use SEO techniques to earn organic traffic and build up an online reputation for their website. These methods include the following:

1. On-page optimization

Somehow, Google goes by a formula that helps them decide which pages to index and rank and which ones to scrap. This formula comes in the form of on-page SEO.

Also known as on-site SEO, this method involves tweaking a page’s content, including its meta tags and links, to help search engines better understand it.

One of the major factors of on-page SEO is content, which we’ll discuss in detail later. Without relevant content and keywords, it’s futile to perform SEO.

Other on-page factors marketers should consider are as follows:

  • Optimizing title tags, meta descriptions, and images
  • Improving website speed and meeting Google’s Core Web Vitals
  • Considering mobile-friendliness in web page design
  • Building a strong backlink portfolio (more on this later)

2. Content creation

“Content is king,” is a common adage in the world of SEO. And it can’t get any truer.

In the past, SEO heavily relied on keywords, leading many site owners to resort to black-hat SEO tactics like keyword stuffing. While doing keyword research and inserting them into web content is still an important SEO action, a website’s ranking does not solely depend on them.

Now more than ever, Google is all about delivering relevant content to its users through the E-A-T criteria, which translates to expertise, authoritativeness, and trustworthiness. This means a piece of content should be well-researched and backed by experts. Otherwise, that’s likely ending up at the bottom of search results.

3. Link building

Businesses that want to reach long-term organic success can’t miss out on a good link building strategy. This is another SEO method that involves acquiring backlinks from high-quality websites. This simply means other websites trust a website enough to share its link on their own.

A good backlink portfolio allows Google’s bots to discover new web pages and decide how well they should rank on the platform’s search results.

The question is, what’s a marketer to do to get others to get those backlinks? The answer still lies in the E-A-T formula. Website owners should work on authority in the online sphere, and the rest should follow.

Email marketing

email marketing grow traffic to website
Photo by Burst from Pexels

For every $1 spent on emails, businesses get a return of $36. That makes emails a non-negotiable for small to medium businesses, especially if they want to nurture existing customers.

Brands can utilize email marketing in many ways, such as announcing promos, marketing campaigns, and company news. They can also use it to promote new products and increase visits to their website.

Of course, there are other ways e-commerce businesses can boost their sales. A pro-tip is to use tools that access a competitor’s custom records, such as a list of their suppliers. This gives businesses an idea of where to supply their products without going through a trial-and-error process.

Social media marketing

Social networks are another excellent platform to promote a brand website. With millions of users going online daily, social media provides businesses with a wider audience reach and meaningful engagement.

Social media marketing is a whole other strategy marketers should consider. But brands should get down to these basics to kickstart their social presence:

  • Create and maintain a brand profile.
  • Post content regularly, including photos, videos, or stories.
  • Respond to comments and keep their reputation in tiptop shape.
  • Build a community by engaging with customers and influencers that can help spread awareness of the business.

The Verdict: Free or Paid?

Unless they crack the formula to making a viral post, website owners must exert effort and patience to maintain a good amount of traffic to their site. While they can resort to paid advertising, working on organic traffic is always the most cost-efficient choice in the long run. Businesses can also leverage both methods to enhance their marketing campaigns. They only need to learn which strategies work for their business best.


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