Will Traffic Remain King in 2015?
Traffic definitely proved it was king over content during the last several years, but now as stale free porn content and recycled mainstream entertainment begin to lose their luster, we are starting to see some new trends with the biggest traffic providers seeking to fill the void as overall production is way down at a time when the need for fresh new content appears to be on its way back up.
Several of the highest traffic sites in mainstream are video streaming services including Netflix and Hulu. Anyone paying any attention is well aware of the fresh content Netflix has started producing for its own platform in-house, including award-winning series like “House of Cards,” “Orange Is the New Black,” and so many others. At first the rumor was that Netflix was making its own content as a way to gain better bargaining leverage with studios that were asking too a high a price to feed its massive consumer base with fresh movies and television shows. Then, the truth started coming out from industry insiders explaining that the Netflix platform requires a never-ending amount of fresh new video to feed the insatiable appetite of its huge fan base.
With modern TV series like “The Big Bang Theory” only making eight or 10 episodes per season, in contrast to a show like Frasier that made 20-plus episodes every year, the re-run process which worked on television years ago is now failing hard for on-demand platforms like Netflix — and the similarities with free tube adult sites are striking.
Years ago, porn DVDs contained six or seven scenes each, along with bonus tracks and behind the scenes extras on every disc. Now, fans are lucky to find four or five scenes on a DVD without duplicates from other titles. That matters to a guy buying a DVD to bring home, but in a lot of ways it matters even more to sites that rely on DVD porn content. The amount of fresh new videos available just isn’t what it used to be.
The biggest news of 2014 in adult may be the recent announcement that JT’s company ReallyUseful struck a deal to have MindGeek manage all of their sites.
While ReallyUseful certainly had a large number of recurring members and great traffic numbers, some have suggested that the real keys to the deal were that MindGeek needs a lot of fresh new content for its free tube properties and will have access to plenty now that ReallyUseful is bringing its popular brands in-house for them. The deal also all but ended the much-rumored Cloud.xxx platform that may have tilted the scales even more in favor of content creators by aggregating their uploading clout, shifting authority away from the dominance traffic providers have attained recently.
The recently launched adult DVD free site Nudeflix is now pumping out thousands of complete non-exclusive titles absolutely free for fans. That’s full length, full quality limitless DVD videos without ever paying a penny and it’s all properly licensed material. Its owners did point out that the parallels to mainstream aren’t exactly the same in adult.
“The big difference is that people will jerk off to the same girl or same scene many times and fans often go back to their favorites with porn” said Josh of Nudeflix.com “In mainstream it’s pretty rare for anyone to watch the same television episode more than once or the same movie over and over intentionally. So, while I’d agree content is key to what we do, it’s more about having exactly what our fans want than it is about having something they have never seen anywhere else.”
Still, that trend may soon affect adult traffic in profound ways. One well-known shooter who spoke on the condition of remaining anonymous to prevent any potential backlash from potential clients said, “A lot of sites that used to offer exclusive content have gone on autopilot and many shooters have left the adult ranks in the last few years, leaving very few publishers producing their own exclusive content in-house. Even as studios seek to produce generic sets in a gonzo style that makes scenes somewhat future proof – eventually it will all look dated, especially when something like 4K video becomes popular and 90 percent of the videos on the market can not be re-mastered to match it.”
“You can still generate great traffic with nonexclusive content if you find something really eye-catching,” said Nick from eFUKT.com “I have no idea how sites survive by just posting the same 40 videos a fan can find on hundreds of other sites. They are going to have to start making their own fresh content soon or people are going to get fed up with paying to see the same blowjob they just watched last month somewhere else.”
Since the large free sites all serve as paid traffic providers and rely heavily on ad sales to media buyers, the biggest trend in traffic during 2015 is likely to be free sites creating or acquiring exclusive content to be given away for the sake of generating clicks for sale. Stealing videos brings too much unwanted attention now that content creators are so much savvier than they were years ago, and content prices are a fraction of what they once were. That is allowing many free sites to eschew piracy and become content creators, which may soon make all the piracy concerns obsolete.
“We intend to give our fans thousands of the best porn DVDs ever produced, including all the newest ones, absolutely free,” said Josh of Nudeflix. “Full length videos, not clips, in full DVD quality streaming and a terrific interface that is better than most any site they would otherwise need to pay for ... and if the time comes, we will look into producing our own exclusive videos as well because we don’t see traffic and content as being two different things ... to us it’s always been about pleasing as many people as we can and that makes everything else into pieces of the same exact puzzle.”
“It has been challenging to find good paysites worth reviewing these days and a lot of the free sites have stepped up their game in the last few months,” said a site owner who asked to remain anonymous. “These days the line between paysites and free sites is almost gone in terms of the user experience. A lot of the best free sites out there probably deserve even better scores than the paysites we promote — but they don’t have an affiliate program to join so we are already rethinking our own business model and adapting to the market in new ways. Fantastic exclusive content sites that update often, and massive library sites like VideosZ are still easy to recommend to our traffic, but a lot of others will need to step up their game or be eliminated by legal free content in 2015.”
Some traffic brokers, like TrafficForce have had a long-standing rule that they will only sell traffic directly to premium sites avoiding the possibility of a free site competitor purchasing traffic from their inventory. However, as paysites become less competitive and free sites move toward providing exclusive content of their own, it may soon become harder to differentiate one from the other.
One glaring question that needs to be answered is: What value would the free site traffic have for a paysite owner if it is all coming from a free site that is already superior to their own content, including new exclusive content that compete with their own?
It seems that in many instances, free porn is becoming a marketing hook to be used predominantly for the benefit of non-porn brands. Dating and webcams were obvious early cross-overs, but as those markets get saturated and the traffic volume continues to become more consolidated – are we far from gaming sites, major mainstream brands and everyone else starting to buy adult traffic from the largest adult sources for use in non-porn verticals?
2015 may be the year that someone creates a simple bridge allowing huge free porn sites fueled by their own legal content, to provide traffic across the divide to many mainstream brand media buyers.