Sly 1-2 Punch to Generate Traffic

7th of May 2010 0

Sly 1-2 Punch to Generate Traffic

Although banners are not as effective as they once were, they’re still worth using, if you apply a little ingenuity. One of the major problems with banners is that you need to put them in front of people, so that means you need to already have traffic in order to get traffic from banner ads.

A trick that works well is to use banner exchanges in combination with a pop-under campaign.

Introduction to banner exchanges –

Banner exchanges allow you, as a website owner, to exchange traffic with other website owners. There are many banner exchange networks that provide free banner exchange programs.

Essentially, by agreeing to show other website banners on one or more of your pages, you’ll earn credits that will display your banner on other websites that are part of the banner exchange network.

The process to participate in one of these programs is like this:

1) sign up

2) upload your banner

3) add the HTML code on your website (on as many pages as you want)

4) start receiving free traffic.

There’s plenty of help online for creating an attractive banner, so try using a free web-based banner creation tool if you don’t own graphics software or don’t have the inclination to go thru the process. You can also hire a graphic artist to produce a professional banner. You can find artists at sites like elance.com or ebay.com

Most banner exchanges offer a 2:1 ratio, which means that for each two banners you show on your website (two impressions) your banner is displayed once on another website.

You can find lots of free banner exchanges by searching on Google or any of the other big search engines. Find and sign up for ten banner exchanges. There mostly all free to join, although some of them do offer paid upgrades for better results. If you’re short on cash, just go for the free signups. Although it does take a little time and effort to sign up for the banner exchanges, it only needs to be done once.

Once you’ve signed up for the banner exchanges, take the banner code they’ve provided and paste it into a single web page. When you’ve finished, you’ll have a single web page containing the banner display code for all ten banner exchanges.

Now it’s time to generate banner credits –

You’ve probably seen the ads where you can buy thousands of guaranteed hits to your website for a few dollars. Many new marketers buy into those deals and expect to make a lot of sales, but in almost all cases, it’s just a big disappointment.

Here’s why – the traffic you’re buying is generated by showing your page as a pop-up or pop-under on a network of high traffic sites. Those sites are probably unrelated to the topic of your website and the visitors to these websites probably aren’t interested in whatever you’re selling, so they’ll just close your window without even looking at your content. Because of this, you can’t expect very much in the way of sales from this kind of traffic.

So here’s how you can convert that untargeted traffic into targeted traffic – go to Google and search for “guaranteed visitors”. You’ll see lots of offers where you can pay a few dollars and receive thousands of visitors to your website. Keep in mind, these visitors are very unlikely to be interested in any offer you have, so don’t bother trying to sell them anything.

Instead, when entering the URL of the web page where you want the purchased traffic sent to, specify the web page that has the display code for your ten banner exchanges. Now, each time your page appears as a pop-up, you’ll receive credit at each of the ten banner exchanges.

Here are the numbers –

Let’s say that you buy 200,000 guaranteed hits at a cost of $100. That means that you’ll be displaying your banner exchange code 200,000 times and since each time it’s displayed you get credit for 10 displays (1 for each banner exchange). So with 200,000 hits, you’ll get credit for 2,000,000 banner displays.

Most banner exchanges operate on a ratio of 2 to 1, which means that every time you display their banner twice, they’ll display your banner once. So for the 2,000,000 displays, your banner will be display 1,000,000 times. That’s a lot of banner displays!

Now let’s assume that your banner has a click through rate of 0.5% (one click for every 200 banner impressions). That means that you can expect about 5000 visitors from this campaign. But, those are targeted visitors, since most of the banner exchanges allow you to specify the topics of the websites where your banners will be displayed. And since these visitors actually clicked on your banner, they’re interested in your offer.

Using this method, you’re now getting targeted visitors for 2 cents each! That’s hard to beat.

On average, banners receive a click thru rate of 0.2% – 0.6%, but some banner ads receive a CTR of up to 3%. It’s up to you to create a professional banner with an incredible offer, so that nobody can resist! If you design a banner that beats the 0.5% CTR used in the example above, your cost per targeted visitor can be substantially reduced.

Tips for creating your banner –

1. Choose attention grabbing content. Space is so limited with a banner, so just like newspaper headlines, you have to come up with something that really gets the viewer’s attention with just a few words. Since you have to do it in one or two sentences, try using something funny, outrageous but intriguing. You can also use pictures, which deliver similar effect.

2. Call to an action. Many people like to be guided. Tell them what to do such as “Click here” or “Get it now”.

3. Focus on one offer. Your banner ad should carry one single message. By including several offers in one ad, chances are you will confuse viewers rather than intrigue.

4. Make it readable. Even a greatly designed banner will fail to motivate a viewer if the text on it is not readable.

5. Avoid information overload. Too many pictures, colors and fonts make banners look clumsy. Viewers tend to ignore these types of banners. Animated banners should have less than four frames.

6. Don’t use heavy banners. Make sure that your banner file size is less than 10-12K. Bigger files take longer time to load and may not be accepted by some banner exchanges.

7. Test your banners before publishing. Check how your banners will look with different browsers. Verify that the banner link URL is correct and linked to the right page on your website.

Recent statistics shows that a banner, which looks like text, has 4 times more click through rate than a conventional banner, so consider using text banners to increase efficiency of your banner ad program.

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