The Truth About Free Website Traffic

Travis Bliffen
by Travis Bliffen 11 Nov, 2014

:: By Travis Bliffen, Stellar SEO::

Why pay for SEO, when social media is free? As a business owner you may have thought this and as a marketing or sales professional, I know you have heard this but; is social media really a "free" source of Web traffic?

Social media is a good source of traffic and it can be a cost-effective method of promoting your business online after you have an audience to share your content with. Just how can you go about building an audience on social media though? 

Paid Advertising

The fastest way to grow your audience on social media is through paid ads. There are numerous options to choose from for each platform. On Facebook you could run a promotion to get page likes, boost a recent post, or even promote an app or event. The other popular social platforms also allow you to pay to build your following in various ways. The cost will obviously vary based upon your promotion but regardless of the platform or method you choose, it is not free.

Hard Work

Rarely does anyone tell you anymore that hard work is required to succeed, even online. If you are not going to use any paid ads to promote your social presence you are still going to be investing your time. In order to grow a following on social media organically you need to do the following.

- Formulate a social media strategy and editorial calendar.

- Find and follow people who are interested in what you offer or those who have an audience likely to be interested in what you have to offer.

- Curate content that captures the attention of your followers and encourages them to share your social profile as a resource that others should follow.

- Create original posts that appeal to your target audience and spur them to engage and convert on your offers. Posts with images are far more likely to be shared so do not forget to allot time for finding or designing images to go with your posts.

- Take time to interact with your followers. Respond to their questions, engage them in a conversation about a recent post they liked or shared and encourage them to reach out to you via social media as well.

- Track the results of various actions on social media, determine which strategies are most effective, and refine you approach accordingly.

Fun with Math

Let's say that you allot only one hour per day to do all of these tactics mentioned above. How much do you earn per hour? Multiply your hourly rate by 30 hours and that is how much money per month you are already investing into social media.

If you make $20 per hour, you are investing $600 per month on social media. That is if you only spend an hour per day, I know many of you spending more than that already.

When you crunch the numbers are you actually getting a return on your "free" social media advertising? Chances are your money would be better spent on SEO.

Author Bio: Travis Bliffen is the founder of Stellar SEO, a search marketing and design agency located near St. Louis, Mo. Travis loves researching and writing about SEO strategies and implementing innovative strategies for his clients. Connect on Twitter @theseoproz.