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Paid Traffic Sources Are Way Better Than “FREE” Traffic Sources

There are hundreds, and hundreds of different traffic sources you can buy from. I know it can be overwhelming, but this is a good thing.

One of the biggest issues in business is what I call “concentration of risks.” It means if your main traffic source isn’t working for you, then you have other options.

What sets the traffic sources apart?

1. The Type of Audience

What kind of audience does ESPN have? Probably men that are into sports. Do you think advertising women’s shoes would be effective? Nah.

Understand the kind of audience your traffic source has.

Ngo Tip: You can ask your traffic source for a report on which countries they have the most volume in. Sometimes they can even give you more detailed information such as age, gender, and other demographic information.

If you have a great offer to promote to Singapore, wouldn’t it make sense to only work with traffic sources with significant Singaporean traffic?

2. The Targeting Options

Targeting is your ability to promote your ads to a select portion of the audience. The more targeting options the traffic source has, the better.

Some examples of targeting options

  • Age
  • Gender
  • The state they’re in
  • Their favorite television shows
  • The time of the day they’re viewing your ad
  • What device the person (Mobile or Desktop, iPhone vs Android)
  • The website they’re visiting (also known as placement or SiteID)

Targeting lets you promote to the most profitable segments.

Imagine if you had a pet walking business.

You spend $100 for 1000 flyers. You want to put the flyers in the places where your audience are most likely to be.

Putting them around Groceries stores and Walmart MAY work, but they can be even more targeted.

You can put them around pet stores, dog parks, and veterinarians.

That’s what a big part of running campaigns is: You need to figure out WHO wants your offer, and then TARGET them.

That’s why Google and Facebook are considered the top traffic sources. It’s not just because of the amount of VOLUME they have but also because of their TARGETING ability.

3. The Costs

Each traffic source also has different ways to pay (different bidding models).

One site might be overpriced due to the competition. Another one might be a “hidden gem” and have plenty of high converting sites.

4. Rules and Regulations

This is huge.

Some traffic sources are more strict than others. That means you’re limited to what you can promote.

5. The Amount of Traffic Available

Not every traffic source is capable of generating 5-figures a day. I always tell people to go big.

Hint: If you’re a newbie, don’t worry about hitting the big numbers. Big paydays will come later. Focus on making your first $100 a day.

6. The Competition

There are some traffic sources out there that are amazing, and not too competitive. If there is a ton of supply and not much buyers, then it can be underpriced.

7. The QUALITY of the Traffic Source

“The Leads are weak? No, you’re weak!”

I’m gonna tell you straight up, some traffic sources suck.

Maybe there’s a lot of FRAUD traffic.

  • You think that click you paid $.50 for was a real human who can convert, but it was actually a bot from a publisher.
  • You THINK that click was an iPhone user in Singapore. But in actuality it was an Android user from Malaysia. Great traffic sources have the funds / people to re-invest in better technology so this doesn’t happen as often.

The Different Types of Paid Traffic Sources

There are hundreds if not thousands of traffic sources out there. The easiest way to understand the difference is to put them into different CATEGORIES.

Social TrafficSocial traffic sources refer to targeting users based on demographics, interests, or a number of other similar targeting options.

Social ad platforms qualify users based on advertiser targeted options like age, interest, geo, etc. If the user meets the advertiser’s requirements, then the ad will be shown.

Social traffic allow creative advertisers to tailor ads around a specific user base.

Social Traffic Sources:

  • Facebook
  • PlentyOfFish
  • Pinterest

Although there are tons of social networks available to buy traffic, we’re going to focus on the biggest one: Facebook.

With a huge selection of targeting options and its nearly unlimited supply of traffic, Facebook is one of the most lucrative traffic sources for affiliates.

Main Testing Variables on Facebook:

  • Age Brackets
  • Interest Keywords
  • Bidding Type

Search Traffic

Search traffic simply describes traffic that comes from search engines.

For the sake of keeping things simple, we’re going to only discuss Google, the biggest search engine (and traffic source) in the world.

With Google being the #1 search engine in the world, it is the most visited website globally.

Google is a powerful, attractive traffic source because it allows keyword targeting (the search queries that are typed in the search box). You’re able to provide ads specifically for what users are searching for.

For example, if you go into Google and type “big screen tvs,” you’re going to be immediately shown search results and search ads relevant to this query.

Notice that there are two types of results being shown:

  • Organic Results
  • Paid results

Google’s paid search platform is known as Adwords.

Advertisers are able to pay their way to being listed at the top for targeted keywords.

Your Cost Per Click is determined by which keyword you’re bidding on and the relevancy of your ad and website to that keyword.

Google’s ad platform is user-friendly and has a host of tools and settings to help you create the most relevant, powerful, and cost-efficient campaign in minutes.

Paid Search Traffic Sources:

  • Google Adwords
  • Bing (Microsoft)

Main Testing Variables on Search

  • Keywords
  • Ads

Mobile Traffic (Advertising on Cell Phones)

When affiliates refer to mobile as a traffic source, it means advertising on cellphones.

Mobile is the fastest growing traffic source. What I love about mobile is we’re able to advertise in countries we weren’t able to before.

5 years ago I couldn’t imagine advertising in Indonesia, Iran, and Colombia! Now these countries love cell phones and we’re able to monetize them.

Remember that plenty of traffic sources like Facebook and Google have desktop and mobile traffic.

Hint: Always set separate campaigns for desktop and mobile. You don’t want to mix the traffic together because it performs differently.

Within mobile, the most popular forms of advertising are:

Display / Banner


Redirect – When the visitor lands on a URL, they’ll automatically redirect to your landing page.


Push Notifications

The biggest challenge in mobile is the optimization process. Improving a campaign is hard enough, now you gotta add in:

  • Carriers
  • Operating System
  • Handsets
  • and more.

Ensuring things like your website or ad being displayed properly on all cellphones or how fast it’s loading can be a headache to optimize for many affiliates.

But the potential for mobile is huge, and its reach spans all over the world. Mobile as a traffic source allows advertising in untapped markets globally, allowing for cheap advertising spend with high ROIs. (There are many countries where access to a cellphone is far easier than to a computer).

With its growing popularity, there are tons of traffic sources specializing in only mobile traffic. In fact, there are traffic sources that specialize in only certain types of mobile advertising like “mobile pops” or “mobile display.”

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