Can Quora drive traffic?

Ian Lurie

I’m addicted to Quora. There, I’ve said it.

I know some folks have doubts. I love StackOverflow too. But something about Quora has me on there, all the time, answering questions.

I do have an ulterior motive: If I can get on there and help lots of people out, I can build an audience. If I build an audience, that’s one more pool of interested people who might someday hire my company, buy a book, etc..

See, I’m not actually addicted. I have business motives! I can quit any time I want.

But that business motive means I gotta see Quora actually do something as a traffic or lead generator. So I’ve started keeping score.

Traffic: Bleagh

Traffic is a dead loser. After 4 weeks of posting 3-4 answers a day, and accumulating just over 400 followers, I’ve had a total of 42 visitors. Wooooo.

Quora Referrals

Quality and potential

But it pays to look a little deeper. On a site like Quora, I’m not necessarily looking for volume. I’m looking for quality. I want really, truly interested people to get in touch with me, follow me on Twitter, etc..

So, take another look at the numbers:

Quora numbers

Of the top 50 referring sites for Conversation Marketing, Quora generates the third highest time-on-site. If folks are spending that much time on my site after coming from Quora, then this might just be worth it. In my own, weird scoring system, these are high quality visitors.

On the other hand, goal conversion from Quora is zero. Zilch. Nada. But it’s not much of a sample size.

The jury’s still out

We’ll see how Quora does. My 30-minute-per-day investment really only requires one new client per quarter to pay off.

I’ll keep you posted.

Ian Lurie

Ian Lurie is founder of Portent. He's been a digital marketer since the days of AOL and Compuserve (25 years, if you're counting). Ian's recorded training for, writes regularly for the Portent Blog and has been published on AllThingsD, Smashing Magazine, and TechCrunch. Ian speaks at conferences around the world, including SearchLove, MozCon, Seattle Interactive Conference and ad:Tech. He has published several books about business and marketing: One Trick Ponies Get Shot, available on Kindle, The Web Marketing All-In-One Desk Reference for Dummies, and Conversation Marketing. Ian is now an independent consultant and continues to work with the Portent team- training the agency group on all things digital. You can find him at

Start call to action

See how Portent can help you own your piece of the web.

End call to action


  1. Quora is way too fresh. I am expecting to see its benefits much later on, when (and if) it will hit mainstream. There are lots of power in QA sites, but they need to have different users than Experts, Professionals and Social butterflies only.

  2. Nice article Ian, personally I think it depends on what questions you answer and how you are perceived.
    Depending on the topic depends on how much traffic I have received.
    Quora will slow down but I think it will keep their key user base.
    It will be interesting how Quora will handle the spamming by Merk Turks and black hats

  3. Just signed up for Quora a few days ago after a friend mentioned it to me. Looks like it has great potential for building relationships, but as well as showing off your credibility in a more conversational approach online.
    Danny makes a good point about handling spam. We’ll see how Quora tackles this.

  4. Quora is an interesting website, but I think it is going to be awhile before it becomes popular. It may never take off. There are a lot of ways that people can get questions answered online, such as forums or blogs. It sounds a bit like a wikipedia clone in a way because it gives users the ability to edit. If the answers provide value, then it can become a good website.

  5. Thanks fir sharing the numbers. I’m sure many people are wondering the same thing: can Quora drive leads?
    I haven’t put quite the amount of time in as you answering questions, but I’ve definitely found myself hooked by Quora reading all the great knowledge people share on just about any subject imaginable. And I think your scoring system jives with (a) how you should start scoring for quality over quantity, and (b) what should be expected of the folks who follow you from Quora to your site.
    But there’s different types of quality visitors. Hive mind has already started on Quora, just like it did on Twitter. So those visits may very well be high quality – but it’s probably quality people who want more of your great info to expand their own knowledge base rather than to engage you for services. It’s peers, not potential customers.

  6. It’s not the traffic but the relationships that I have an opportunity to build on Quora that I enjoy. I like sites like this before the media hype and the inevitable mainstream flood.

  7. Quora can also be used as a reputation building tool. It can be the marketing face of a company, interacting with journalists, consumers, and share holders alike to address where the company is going etc. It also has the potential to build niche communities depending on which topics you’re following.
    The information that I find most valuable are the startup and funding Q & As. It can help a lot of startups grow. It’s really awesome that people are willing to not just share success stories but to share their mistakes too so others can learn.
    It’s Wikipedia for business on real time. (Oh yes, I’m addicted, too.)

  8. Will quora take off? This isn’t a question now! It have done this. Will it reach its target, to be a great knowledge base for the questions published on Quora. I hope so. I love some of the excellent questions and its answers, but i do worry about two things. First it pay to much attention to people not the content. Compared with wikipedia. Wikipedia never put the person who edited first. Normally, people don’t care about the person who edited, they just care about content. The content is King there. People on wikipedia will focus on the knowledge but on quora, people want to prumote themselves, or their business, just like Lan. So people do need to worry about the quality of answers.
    Second, people want to build relationship on quora. I really dislike this idea, if you want to build good relationship, why not facebook or linkedin, or even twitter. People with much more follwers will have super big influence over the answer and its votes. This is very harmful to the quality of answer and the question.

Comments are closed.

Close search overlay