Before we get onto what is Paid traffic and free traffic, we need to understand the word traffic in the digital world and how it is important for a website. Digital traffic can be defined as the number of users visiting as well as taking an action like purchasing, saving or subscribing on the website. It can be said the every digital marketing strategy is aimed at getting traffic to the website.
Free traffic or commonly known as organic traffic is the mostly generated through the website content itself, your social media and SEO. In order for your website to generate a good level of organic traffic or free traffic, the content needs to be top quality, original and fresh! This helps in gaining visibility through SEO and good placing in the search results which helps in redirecting the traffic towards your website. For social media to generate free traffic for the website, you need to have good networking and an understanding of your target audience.
Paid traffic is when the advertiser i.e. you pay the publisher for the traffic they redirect to your website. The most popular method to gain paid traffic is the Pay Per Click method. This includes banner ads like we see on Facebook, twitter and other social websites or blogs. Another method for obtaining paid traffic is with keyword bidding (Google Adwords and Microsoft Bing Ads) for better search engine results.
Pros and Cons for Paid Traffic and Free Traffic:
Although paid traffic is the fastest route to generate website traffic and is successful in reaching a wide number of users, it is not a medium that generates customer loyalty. This is the reason it is often known as rented traffic as it does not ensure a repeat view from the user, whereas on the other hand, Free traffic has more branding and brand image associated with it since it involves high research and quality content curation relevant to the user. It requires a great deal of time and energy and an expert strategy to achieve.
It may appear that free traffic is the best option to choose since it is free and generated through content purely but it is also important to note that free traffic does not necessarily ensure conversion into sales. With paid traffic the results are quicker and the leads generated are useful, given that the strategy is on point.
Hence, we can conclude that both Free Traffic and Paid Traffic have their pros and cons, they hold a very different set of approach and it all depends on your set of requirements, which traffic to choose.