There are 5 basic sources for web traffic.
Source 1: Organic Search
When people talk about SEO, this is the traffic source they want to build. If you rank #1 for a particular search term, you are going to get somewhere around 35% of the traffic querying that term.
Source 2: Paid Traffic
Paid traffic comes from ads, in whatever form that might be. Facebook, Google, Bing, LinkedIn, twitter, banner networks, solo ads, etc. There are plenty of people out there willing to take your money in exchange for exposing their audience to your message. This includes offline avenues of marketing like tv, billboards, direct mail, and so on.
Source 3: Social Traffic
Social traffic comes from building a following of some kind on a social media platform. One of the advantages of social traffic is that it is typically very targeted and these people already like you. That’s how you built the following in the first place.
Source 4: Referrals
Referrals come from other websites. In this overall model, we are really talking about other content website as opposed to ad placements or social traffic.
Source 5: List Traffic
List traffic comes from the traffic you create by sending messages to your email list. This is closely related to social traffic.
So, that’s great and all, but the question we need to be asking is how do we increase our share of each type of traffic?
I will be writing about that in future installments.