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Can you buy your way into organic traffic?

Last week I read Buy Then Build. In this book author Walker Deibel, highlights how buying a business is easier than starting one.

He offers advice on how to find a business to buy, why banks are willing to fund your purchase, and how to apply your entrepreneurial spirit to improving the business.

What’s interesting about this concept, is that it can also be applied to getting more traffic to product pages.

How?

Believe it or not, I’ve seen some bloggers sell and rent pages on their site to an advertiser.

This is a bigger scope than just getting a link pointing to your website. You can negotiate to make changes to the original content, add or remove links, images, and even throw in some promotions in the blogger’s email and social media.

So why would you consider buying a page or blog post on someone’s website?

3 Reasons Why You May want to Buy a Link to your Product Page

1. Search results – This strategy is especially useful for eCommerce companies because driving traffic to product pages can be difficult. Also because search result pages for products are often crowded by advertisers, Amazon listings, or comparison sites.

2. Speed – Within days if not hours of adding links to your website you will start to see results.

Think of it as a mix of organic and paid traffic.

3. The Psychology of Social proof – Most of our behaviors are learned through imitation, this includes buying behaviors. According to Robert Cialdini, we look to our peers and networks to figure out what’s valuable, what’s not, and how we should choose between the two. It’s partly why influencer marketing is such a big industry these days. When your consumer sees someone else recommending your product or service it can generate more sales for you.

The Buy Then Build Method for Organic Traffic

Here’s a playbook to get traffic to your product pages by finding blog opportunities:

  1. Identify a keyword you want to target
  2. Head over to Google search for your keyword
  3. Make note of blogs in the top 10
  4. Estimate the traffic volume
  5. Estimate your referral traffic

Let me walk you through this with an example of a company that sells, let’s say “ramen noodles”.

Step 1 – Choose a keyword

First off, I want to choose a keyword that has some buying intent. I’m not looking for keywords with “what, how, when, why” in them because those are usually used when someone is still learning about a subject.

Instead, I’m going to use a keyword that demonstrates the user is intent on having ramen noodles, like “healthy ramen noodles”.

Step 2 – Search for low-hanging search opportunities

I found this really interesting opportunity in Google when I searched for “healthy ramen noodles”:

An important step here is to only target blogs owned by individuals, and not media companies because it will be 10 times easier for you to negotiate with them on both the content, length of the agreement, and price.
Look for a bio with the blogger’s photo or an about page with their details, like this:

Step 3 – Make a list of 5-10 blog opportunities

Repeat this process until you have a list of 5-10 blogs you’d like to reach out to. Don’t stop at just one because you’ll be more likely to negotiate against yourself. It’s better to have a few opportunities in front of you so you can judge them against each other.

Step 4  – Estimate traffic volume

I’d advise that you use a tool like ahrefs or SEMrush for this. Simply type in your keyword the keyword research tool and look at the volume for that keyword.

I see an estimated search volume of 2,700 monthly searches and 1,673 clicks for “healthy ramen noodles” in ahrefs:

 

Step 5 – Estimate your referral traffic

This is the tricky part because its not exact science. First part we want to do here is estimate how much your blogger is getting today. You should do this step before reaching out to the blogger, but you could just skip it and ask to see an organic traffic report from Google Analytics of the last 12 months to this page.

If you want to estimate the traffic volume this page currently gets from organic traffic, you can drop it into the site explorer in ahrefs.

Here’s what I see for the blog post I found (1,600 monthly organic traffic):

Now, how much traffic should you expect?

Its safe to say that not everyone that visits this blog post will click on a link to your website, but anywhere between 3% and 10% of traffic is a reasonable estimate. For this example that would translate to 48-160 monthly referrals.

This may not sound like a lot of visits, but you have to remember these users have already shown some intent in eating ramen noodles, and if they click on one of those links that’s a very strong sign they are a potential customer.

Do this one step to wrap up your blogging opportunity

At this point, you are ready to send each blogger a note to gauge their interest.

I’d try to get them on the phone so you can talk through the opportunity of working together. Perhaps even start with just sending your product so the blogger can try it out before you go into a pitch. This way you can test to see if they actually took the time to try your product.

You want to work with people that you trust so take things slowly, the last thing you want to worry about is wasting your time on someone that’s not going to follow through for you.

Now over to you, have you tried something like this before?

Please let me know in the comments below.

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