3 Types Of Online Traffic

Online traffic can be a picture painted like this: What if you knew you were driving leads from the slow lane that ends in the next 50m and after that you will crash?

There are 3 types of traffic online and most people are relying on the slow lane that is eventually going to end or make their business pull over on the side while everyone else speeds past.

I will outline what these three types of online traffic are and which lane you want to be in the most.

First let me start by saying that when I say traffic I mean people viewing you online. This could be your website, social media profile, opening emails, banner ads etc. People seeing your brand or online presence somewhere.

The first type of traffic is Traffic You Don’t Control

This is where every business starts and is a lot of businesses main source of traffic and leads. Some examples of this would be word of mouth or referrals. This is a great source of traffic because it usually converts the best. Where ever that traffic came from was from someone they trusted enough to check you out and some of the trust will transfer over to you. The huge issue with it is that you can’t control it. You can’t scale your business with word of mouth, you can’t tell people to talk more about you at a BBQ.

I always cringe a little when businesses are proud that their business is all word of mouth and referrals, they wear it like a badge of honour. They see it as a great reputation and quality service/product which is great, but they are very vulnerable for any kind of change. They don’t have a system set up to bring in more traffic which means they are at risk of a competitor coming in and taking it.

If you have great word of mouth and referrals then this is the perfect time to capitalise on it. If this brings in enough then you can compound this with the other forms of traffic to dig your position in and secure your place in the market.

At the end of the day, this is going to happen either way, it can be seen as the equivalent of doing nothing.

The second type of traffic is Traffic You Do Control

This is where businesses start to scale and more mature businesses play. This is any traffic you put money into and then get a return, for example, Facebook Ads, Google AdWords, LinkedIn, Snapchat, etc. If you put $X in then you will get some kind of result back, guaranteed. How good that result is has many variable factors such as messaging, targeting, your offer, etc. But no matter what you will get a result. Even if you put $1,000 into a campaign and no one clicks on it, you still had your ad shown to thousands of people.

Traffic you control is one of the main sources of how successful businesses get leads and new clients. Your business can only grow so far without it. This can be essential but like traffic you don’t control you don’t want to rely on it 100%. This would be putting all your eggs in one basket. We worked with a business that had 100% of their traffic come from Facebook ads and then one day Facebook decided to shut their ad account down. Their monthly revenue dropped to almost 0. It took weeks before the ad account was back up and the business was running again.

You can (to a degree) control this traffic but you never own it…

The third type of traffic is Traffic You Own

This is where you want to drive people to, traffic that you have ownership over. This is having a list of people you can send content to that won’t cost you any money. Email lists, messenger lists, WhatsApp lists, etc. It won’t cost you anything to send out an email about a new offer or what is happening in your industry or why they should come back and buy again. Most businesses have always undervalued their list of clients or potential clients where other companies are willing to pay for them because they know how to use them. How simplest way to build traffic you own is through a lead magnet. This is where you give some value in exchange for people’s details (name and email address). These typically look like, checklists, top tips, quizzes, surveys or any kind of PDF download.

Email open rates are getting lower (standard is under 20% open rate) but they do give you a great return on investment. The other powerful thing you can do with these lists is use them for traffic you can control. You can upload a CSV file (name, email, phone number, etc.) to Facebook and create a custom audience. This way you can target them specifically, exclude them specifically (from a special deal or something like that) or ask Facebook to find what they all have in common and find more people like them.

Traffic you control is how you can make sure you have consistent traffic and leads coming into your business. If something happens in your market or industry, you have this list to fall back on and use.

With having these three lanes to drive traffic which do you see your business in the most? Where do you think you should be more in?

My recommendation is to drive in all of them when you can. Traffic you don’t control will always happen, make sure people are saying good things about your business by providing a great service. When driving traffic you can control, pick a platform that is ideal for where your target audience already is. This can make it more cost effective to get the best results. Once you find a platform is working then test out a couple others so you can put your eggs everywhere like the easter bunny. Ideally, push all traffic to traffic you own. Building a list will be building an asset in your business. Talk to you list regularly and give them a reason to want to stay on your list. Don’t just always sell them stuff.

If you want more direction on how to get more traffic to your online presence so you can bring in more revenue into your business, click this link and book a time to have a chat.