Paid Traffic vs. Organic Traffic

There are many different kinds of traffic when it comes to those who visit your website. Some kinds of traffic are better than others. To clarify, some kinds of traffic are more likely to make a purchase or pay for services than others. And of course, you want to make money from this traffic, so you’ll want to focus on bringing in higher paying kinds of traffic.

So let’s take a look at two of the most important kinds of website traffic, paid traffic and organic traffic. What’s the difference between these two kinds of traffic, and which one is better for your site? Which is better for helping you make money? We’re going to examine both kinds of website traffic more closely and give you a run down of the advantages they have over each other. Read on to learn all there is to know about paid traffic and organic traffic.

What is Paid Traffic?

Paid traffic is traffic generated by ads you paid for, which will ensure your product or site reaches your target audience. Paid traffic can oftentimes be the best kind of traffic because it’s more predictable; you know that generally people clicking through to your website from a paid ad will be more likely to make a purchase or engage with your website in a meaningful way. Other types of traffic are much less predictable.

Let’s explore the pros and cons of paid traffic. Let’s first list out some cons. Paid traffic typically takes the form of paid ads on platforms like Google, Facebook, and Twitter. As a business owner, you place bids on how much you’re willing to pay to get your ad to show up at the top of the list of search results (in Google) or pay for the frequency at which they’ll appear on social media platforms. It can become costly paying for such ads, which is one drawback if you’re working on a tight budget or are just starting up your business.

As for pros, paid traffic is typically more effective than other forms of traffic, including organic. Ads can be targeted toward certain demographics or to show up for searches with certain key words, so you’ll be able to funnel interested customers to your site just by using these targeting methods. Bringing people to your site who are already looking for your product is much more effective than bringing in people who might not know what product they are looking for.

Next, let’s examine some of the main forms of paid traffic so you can get an idea of what they look like and what they can do for you.

Facebook Ads

Let’s start with one of the most obvious methods of generating traffic. Recent studies have shown that ads on Facebook are responsible for around a fifth of the total digital ad spending in the US. Add this to ads generated by Google and we get over half of the total market share for digital ad spending.

A key strength of Facebook ads is the wide variety of available advertisement options, which are constantly changing and adapting to include new and improved features. These types of ads are extremely versatile, allowing you to target exactly who you want to target. You can tailor your ads to fit demographics by location, interests, and preferences, and do this through videos, text, slideshows, carousels, or plain images. The widely used Facebook Stories feature has also been recently adapted for ads, allowing you to create your very own tailored ad stories to capture the attention of consumers. And these adds can be placed into newsfeeds, Messenger, or the audience network.

Remember that with all the options available to you, it can be hard to find which kind of ad works best for your business. This process can take a lot of trial and error, which is why it’s important to keep track of ad metrics to see what the best option is. You should also keep up to date with recent ad innovations and best practices to maximize the traffic you can generate through such ads.

Google Ads

Another top traffic source and ad platform in terms of revenue and traffic generation, Google Ads offers great exposure with a relatively high cost. But how do Google Ads work? All you have to do is choose keywords that are tailored to your target audience and then pay to get your ad placed at the top of the ads list during a related search. The links you see first when you run a Google search are often Google Ads, and this can be a great way to generate some traffic to your website.

Make use of some of the more sophisticated features recently added by Google, including Dynamic Search Ads. These ads will automatically be customized based on the content of your website with no need for you to input any keywords. It will generate ads with the best keywords for your demographic on its own.

Another powerful way to get exposure for your website is to utilize the Google Display Network and create a display ad. Some may say that display ads are a thing of the past, but their reach is still undeniable. The ability for these adds to be seen by the most amount of people at once is almost unparalleled, and so remember to try these if you want some extra traffic.

And if the cost of Google Ads is more than you’re wanting to spend right now, you can always try Bing Ads. As Google’s number one competitor, these can still generate a lot of traffic and are generally much cheaper to maintain.

Twitter Ads

Twitter has become a massive social media giant, boasting hundreds of millions of tweets and billions of search queries every day. With a user base as massive as this, it can be a very valuable platform to place ads.

On top of this, a huge percentage of users claim that they intend to buy the products of businesses they follow on Twitter, which can mean a lot of added revenue and traffic from your business’s followers. With Twitter Ads, you’ll be able to boost your company or website’s following while boosting traffic and potential revenue at the same time.

Making use of Twitter’s huge array of advertising options, you can select from any number of options when paying for an ad. This includes the promotion of a single tweet, a whole account, or a trending topic, and you can choose whether to pay by the click, impression, follow, engagement, lead, app install, or video view. You can also select your target audience by age, device, location, gender, or interest.

What is Organic Traffic?

Organic traffic is the result of various search engines, like Google or Yahoo, and this can often be a good source of traffic if you’re looking for free traffic to your site. This can also come in the form of social traffic, which is generated by your site’s presence on social media. It can come from your site’s page on Facebook or Twitter, for example, or from posting links to your site on various platforms.

As for pros and cons, it’s first good to note that organic traffic is typically free of charge. This is a huge plus over paid traffic, especially if you’re working with a tight marketing budget. However, it can take a lot more work to properly manage your business’s social media profiles and search rankings on Google. SEO is a complex process and can quickly become time consuming if you’re trying to get your business’s website ranking on the first page of search results.

Additionally, another con is that organic traffic is less targeted than paid traffic. Where paid traffic is specifically targeting certain demographics and keywords, organic traffic can come from potentially untargeted groups. Typically, organic traffic won’t be visiting your site with clear intent to make a purchase. They’re still interested in what you’re offering if they navigated to your site in the first place, but it’s been proven that those who arrive organically may be less likely to make a purchase than those who arrived by an ad.


Both paid traffic and organic traffic are potentially beneficial to your company and can both be sources of money for you. However, paid traffic will generally deliver more interested buyers to your site, where organic traffic might be those who are only mildly interested in what you offer. The plus side of organic traffic, though, is that it’s free, if time consuming.

If you’d like to generate more traffic to your site without paying for it, organic traffic is the kind you want to go after. If you’re willing to pay some money for traffic, paid traffic will be the better route to take. Paid ads will generally deliver more potential buyers than other kinds of traffic.

We hope the information we’ve outlined above will help you to know the difference between paid traffic and organic traffic, and to make the right decision for your business on which kind to focus on bringing in.

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