I have managed to so far develop my business without using any form of ‘paid advertising’. By this I mean paying for ads or directory listings and other placement marketing. I prefer organic, I believe the investment long term is much better – BUT saying that, there are some paid placements worth shooting for, but when you are looking at submitting a paid directory listing or paid advert, you really need to do your homework – and what promoted this article was an email I got today which I thought I would use to demonstrate how you should be going about discovering whether the paid listing opportunity is a worthwhile one or not.
The email was selling discounts on memberships to a freelancers site aimed at women. This part (the discount) is certainly nice – but the part which is not so nice about these kinds of offers is that the ‘wording’ can sometimes be misleading for many unsuspecting folk who don’t know very much about online marketing, SEO and traffic generation.
One of the quotes in the email was this:
“Get discovered today by more clients by getting your name into our popular (withheld) Directory.
The traffic to our website by potential clients is huge. Just type “women freelancers” into Google and you’ll see why. We are #1 & #2 !!!
Don’t miss out on this traffic and be seen by clients looking for women freelancers to do the jobs they need done.”
I will tell you why I have an issue with this statement above.
I typed in “women freelancers” and yes – this is a statement of fact, it is entirely true, the site was in position 1 and 2 for “women freelancers” – that’s not my issue. The issue is that the traffic by potential clients through the keyword search in question is really not huge at all — unless a dramatic shift in the mindset of people performing searches in Google happens. You can only get huge amounts of traffic from one keyword being in the top spot of Google if that keyword actually has a very, very large volume of searches.
Let’s take a look at Google Keywords Search Tool:
- Go to https://adwords.google.com/select/KeywordToolExternal
- Type in the “Find Keywords” box “women freelancers”
- Look at the global and monthly search results – Nothing
There appears to be no significant number of individuals searching for this keyword (on a global scale), as referenced by Google. Therefore it’s logical that you would not get “huge” numbers of potential clients finding you through this keyword.
So my advice to anyone thinking about paying for a directory listing or membership. If you find anyone claiming that they have a large amount of potential traffic from a particular keyword, and they would like you to invest in a directory listing based on that – look it up first using the Free Google keyword search tool to make sure that there are people out there searching for it, and always invest your hard earned money wisely.