opinion

Paid and Natural Search Traffic

Joe D

For years we’ve been preaching to new webmasters about the importance of getting a first page ranking on search engines such as Yahoo.com or Google.com. Getting a good position on these engines for natural search results can be vital to the success of your brand marketing on the Internet.

What IS natural search? Well, it’s pretty much exactly how it sounds – natural search results are the results that a person receives from a search engine when they type in a set of keywords. These results are not PAID results that you sometimes see above the natural engine results or in the side column; they are the actual listings that a person receives from their search. A combination of natural and paid first page rankings can really set your enterprise apart and help you qualify search traffic looking for exactly what you offer.

True webmasters know something that a lot of these ad-buying marketers do not – natural search results carry more weight with the savvy user than the bolded-out, top-ranking ad spots, but the average user still uses both and a lot depends on the accompanying text. Are you targeting the savvy user, the average user, or both? Those paid ads get plenty of clicks, but unfortunately after clicking them a few times users often find that many of those ads don’t really include what they are looking for online, so make sure you deliver on your promise and don't poison the pool ;-) Target your keywords and ads, and follow through after the click. Make sure you are pushing a sale the person really wants.

Front page ranking is vitally important because research shows that many consumers will give up with the search after a few hits to items on the front page and will either abandon their efforts or plunk in some new keywords and start over. You only get one shot to get their attention and get them to click on your site, so in this case front page becomes essential for traffic and you have to commit to the time, energy and consistency to earn the natural placement and keep up with the ever-changing algorithms, or commit to the paid search budget to meet your goals, or some combination for true success.

eMarketer.com put out new data recently showing that this behavior of front page clicking is true across all three big engines – Yahoo!, Google, and Bing – with at least 95% of all traffic originating from first page results for a non-branded search. Less than 2% of traffic came from results after the second page. So if you’ve got a five-page-deep ranking, it’s time to brush up on your SEO skills and improve your site’s performance! ...Or engage some experienced search engine specialists and beef up the paid search budget.

Unfortunately, as the industry changes and trends come and go, SEO has dropped further and further down in importance ranking for many developers. With the social media hype in full swing, marketers now value it above all else for traffic development, with digital infrastructure improvements listed as second and search optimization a far third. Where does it rank in your priority list? Do you have the time and resources to invest in natural search ranking efforts? We are all so focused these days on development and managing our queue of technical initiatives, and the demands on our programmers, the intricacy required to go back to our early days of carefully building search enhancements into our sites seems tedious at best.

A report included in the eMarketer.com research reveals that natural search will likely see a rise in spending by online marketers across the board in the coming months. That means that if SEO isn’t your priority RIGHT NOW – it really needs to be. The competition is coming and it’s coming on FIERCE! So stake your claim now. Focus some percentage of your efforts on natural search development, and take a look at your marketing budget to maximize your paid search efforts.

Get started now to identify and work to own targeted adult keyword traffic. Know in advance that you are going to have to manage optimization of your campaigns on a never-ending continuing basis to ensure that your results are efficiently and consistently adjusting to all the changes in the marketplace. And don't forget that just as important as your keyword selection is your ad writing. Don't skimp on creating quality genuine text offers - if you are not a writer, hire the best you can to harness that surfer motivation for the click. If you decide to head toward PAID search get that ad writing expertise as part of your package, and make certain you get a detailed proposal based on your selected keywords and know exactly what it is going to cost you each month in advance. Insist on a detailed black and white proposal that's customized just for you before you commit to a dime in advance. For your peace of mind and budget optimization. It really is all about the next join!

Don't hire an SEO/SEM professional who can't refer you to satisfied clients you already know and respect. Use your network and ask a million questions. Natural search results are a process, and if you make a hiring mistake you are going to be well into it before you realize you've thrown your money away - and lost valuable time.

If you decide to add PAID search or focus on PAID search, look for a team that provides full development and management of your keyword marketing campaigns and provides detailed traffic and cost estimates you can hold them to. For the campaigns, you want to look for list generation and enhancement, optimization of Ad Groups, optimization of your Ads, and overall campaign management - all in a nice tight package. Make sure your traffic and costs estimates include real figures for monthly impressions, clicks, average positioning - and very important - your total monthly costs.

Knowledge is power, and search knowledge is a powerful tool. I want to see you succeed - if you need help locating someone skilled in natural search development let me know. And, if you are ready to commit to a paid search budget to get the jump on the coming wave returning to search marketing with no surprises, write me now and I'll get you set up with a targeted adult keyword traffic team that will help you to a new sales plateau. You'll be impressed.

Write me now and get the jump on the coming rush back to search traffic. See just how easy it is to get started. Stake your claim now.

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