Over the span of almost 20 years, I’ve bought and sold more than a billion click-throughs.

Ahhh, the love/hate relationship with paid traffic. On the one hand, it’s great — a way to get more eyeballs with minimal effort. On the other, it’s one of the most frustrating parts of running a large-scale business. You’re paying for all this traffic, but are you really seeing ROI? How do you make sure it converts?

I’ve worked in media planning and online advertising sales practically since its inception. I’ve helped buy and distribute traffic for countless brand and eCommerce clients, plus all manner of digital media vendors. Every single one sought better conversion ratios and/or higher order values. Bottom line: they all wanted measurable ROI from their traffic buys.

Yet it’s common for ROI on big media buys to be as little as 1:1 or less. You spend hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars paying for traffic, hoping to see the same amount in sales. But this is often not the case, or it’s difficult to measure.

So when I met Tom, founder of OpiaTalk, I was skeptical of his claims about conversion rate growth. He claimed OpiaTalk’s flagship widget could help retailers convert traffic at 4-5x industry average, regardless of where the traffic was from. Frankly, I just didn’t believe it.

When he let me in on the back end, I was floored. Some clients were seeing over 20% in-widget conversion rates (that’s one in five actually making a purchase!). Others saw a significant jump in average AOV, since they used the widget to target their highest-ticket items. What really caught my attention, though, wasn’t the remarkable conversion rates: it was how little it cost merchants to use.

The concept behind OpiaTalk is simple. Based on consumer psychology, the widget helps retailers release ‘disappearing promos’ — think Snapchat for eCommerce. Once a certain number of visitors opt into the widget, a promo code is released that disappears in 15:00 minutes (demo here).

This works. If someone has made it to a retail site, they’re interested in making a purchase. But they’re distracted. Giving them a concrete reason to act right away is the push they need, instead of floating away to another tab in their browser. The tight 15 minute countdown ensures speed and FOMO (fear of missing out), and the whole thing is social — visitors can invite in Facebook friends and chat within the widget.

Given my background, I see four concrete advantages to a tool like this, whether you’re a brand or an agency/network/traffic seller:

1. It can come out of your marketing budget (not IT)

OpiaTalk is a premium direct response online marketing tool, so it falls into the same category as your best performance-based traffic sources. Your marketing budget is probably massive. As long as ROI is feasible, chances are good that your process for approving expenditures in it is much less time-intensive than those for IT infrastructure.

2. You don’t have to budget for more media buys

This isn’t about hiring another ad network or finding more traffic sources. This is about converting the traffic you already have. OpiaTalk eliminates banner blindness but amplifies your best promotion and gets people into transaction mode, rather than drifting away to their email. A good ad source is there to bring the best quality traffic to you – it’s up to you to convert it. OpiaTalk is almost like an insurance policy; whatever traffic you get, more will buy. Paid traffic will start looking a lot better when it’s converting at double or triple the rate.

3. You don’t need to wait for your replatform to be complete (it’s OK to be replatforming)

OpiaTalk works with any eCommerce platform and vendor. You don’t need to switch service providers on any part of your core site infrastructure. There’s no purchasing or long-term leasing of software, no buying or leasing of servers to host a major software install, no long or complex software install.

Integration can be done in minutes, much like the insertion of any affiliate ad network or analytics tracking code. You can test it on your environment, of course, but it’s simple code that layers on top. While you’re replatforming, people are still coming to your site. Wouldn’t it be nice if they were buying while they were there?

4. For agencies, ad brokers and publisher direct sellers: You can be the hero.

If you’re in online ads and marketing, you want to give your clients every advantage possible. You want them to see real ROI off the media you sell them. When you partner with a company like OpiaTalk, you can hack your clients’ media buys. Plus, ensuring that every campaign you sell converts better for the client doesn’t just mean key clients will renew their ad buys and agency contracts. It means they’ll have hard, ROI-based justification to increase ad budgets, and on a regular basis.


At OpiaTalk, I’ve witnessed some of the best ROI I’ve ever seen. Clients routinely see returns of 3-10x — almost ridiculous-sounding. One recent client put in $3,000 and saw $30,000 in returns in less than a month (in hard sales plus opt-in leads). This is the part of my job of which I’m the proudest: We really do help clients move the needle on their bottom line.

I’ve seen people blow millions of dollars on premium traffic and still not make a return. I jumped the fence from (digital) media for sales to this startup because I’ve always wanted clients to win, and this is the winningest tool I’ve come across. Get in touch if we can help you win.