3 Cheap Sources of PPC Traffic

written by BlogEx on April 21, 2008 in Blog Optimization with 27 comments

When it comes to pay per click (PPC) advertising, the first company everyone thinks of is Google. More experienced advertisers will also know of Yahoo and Microsoft’s pay per click advertising options but for a large portion of online advertisers, that’s where their knowledge of PPC ends. The “Big 3″ as they’re know are certainly the largest suppliers of traffic, however, the large number of advertisers vying for that traffic will often drive the prices up. It’s not uncommon to pay anywhere from $0.50 on up to $10 per click through the big 3 depending on which terms you’re targeting. So how are those of us without tens of thousands of dollars in our advertising budget supposed to get the targeted traffic we’re looking for?

That’s where the so called “second tier” PPC suppliers come into play. While they certainly don’t have the volume of traffic that Google or Yahoo does, traffic can almost always be acquired for a fraction of the price it would cost from one of the big 3. I’ve used several different second tier providers in the past but I’m going to focus on the three I found most useful.

SearchFeed

http://searchfeed.com – Once you depart from the big 3, the quality of the traffic you’re paying for becomes the chief concern. Throughout my numerous campaigns and tests, SearchFeed seems to be the highest quality traffic from any of the second tier sites. The price per click ranges anywhere from one cent on up into the dollars for the highest priced terms, but the average price I’ve paid is about 8 to 10 cents. Like most of the other PPC sites, you select the terms you want to bid on, determine the price you’ll pay per click, and the highest bidder gets the most traffic.

7Search

http://7search.com – In my experience 7search has been slightly less consistent than SearchFeed. While the traffic is decent in terms of quality, I’ve run across a few terms and niches that 7search just doesn’t seem to have much traffic for. If you can deal with the hit or miss nature of the site, I’ve found the average click to cost between 4 and 6 cents each. However, over recent months it seems more and more people are discovering the site and prices have been slowly rising.

One slightly confusing aspect of 7search is that it’s actually made up of a network of sites that all funnel the traffic into one channel. However, each source has it’s own prices and it’s own bids so just because you have the tip bid on 7search, you might not have the top bid across the entire network. They do provide a tool for you to view the top bids on all the contributing sites, but the whole thing seems a little unnecessarily chaotic. I guess that’s the price you pay for using second tier sites but I’ll gladly deal with a few quirks if I’m paying 10% what I’d pay through Google, Yahoo, or MSN.

Miva

http://miva.com – Much like 7search, I’ve found Miva to be very hit or miss when it comes to traffic levels. The first few campaigns I set up on Miva worked well and had a slow but steady trickle of traffic being sent to my sites. Then all of the sudden a new campaign I set up apparently tapped into a pretty impressive flow of traffic and I nearly drained my account in the matter of a day or so. I pretty quickly figured out how to limit the amount of money I spent per campaign per day to prevent myself from over spending, but most of the campaigns I set up never needed it. They seemed to have pockets of terms very high traffic levels and they can be fairly difficult to predict. Overall, the traffic from Miva performed fairly well for me and I’d certainly suggest giving them a shot.

While there are plenty of other sources for PPC traffic, these three sites have been the ones that consistently produced the best results. As with any PPC campaign, whether it’s through Google or one of these second tier sites, always, always, ALWAYS track your results. You can blow through a lot of money in a very short period of time if you’re not careful. Keep an eye on your stats and make sure the money you’re spending converts into sales, registrations, or whatever your goal is. I’ve found that most often there are a handful of terms that constantly produce conversions for me while the rest of the terms are like flushing money down the drain. They key to a successful PPC campaign is finding those terms, sorting them out, and pumping as much money as possible into those productive channels.

The benefit of using these sites expands beyond the direct traffic as well. Once you find the productive terms on these cheaper, second tier PPC sites, you’ll often be able to use that knowledge to create successful campaigns on the larger more expensive sites. Not only that, but they are often the terms you should concentrate on in your SEO efforts as well.

Have you ever used any of the so called second tier PPC sites? If so, which ones worked for you and which ones were a waste of money? Feel free to chime in with your tips and experiences in the comment section below.