Sometimes in marketing, the word “traffic” has a bit of a bad rap, calling to mind images of rush-hour motorists passing billboard after billboard. With roadside billboards, the equation is fairly simple. The more traffic there is on the road, the more billboard impressions you’ll get. And hopefully, those extra impressions will eventually translate into brand recognition and sales.

But online marketing doesn’t quite work like that. In online marketing, traffic isn’t the number of people who see your ads, it’s the number of people who visit your site. People simply don’t buy something online because they saw a banner ad over and over. Attempts to increase sales by simply getting more impressions aren’t usually cost-effective.

f you want to succeed at online marketing, you need to prove that your business has what your potential customers need. For this reason, online marketers have started to put less emphasis on getting more traffic and more attention on making a better pitch to the traffic you already have. There are a lot of ways to do this, but the most scientific methods involve systematic A/B tests to build better ads, landing pages and websites. After all, if you can build the perfect user experience, everyone will buy, right? Wrong.

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