Here is the weirdest thing about the modern web: humans are only one constituency, and maybe not the most profitable one.
Consider the case of an anonymous publishing executive who spoke with the media trade magazine, Digiday, about purchasing bulk robot traffic to his former company's website.
By robot, I mean software that is designed to simulate a human being browsing the web. Bots, as they are known, are relatively easy to create, and now you can easily purchase their services to build a nice business, if you are willing to bend the rules of digital publishing.
Arbitrage... Now With More Robots
In this case, the publisher paid $10,000 to $35,000 for the cheapest possible traffic, which companies domiciled outside the United States could provide for about $0.002 per visit. Then, they turned around and sold those visits for between $0.0025 and $0.004 through advertising networks, which act as clearinghouses for bulk advertising buys across the web.
That's a pretty weird media business model, but it doesn't take a genius to realize this is a good arbitrage opportunity. Even if you only make one-tenth of a penny per visit, it's not that expensive to buy millions of visits, so you can make some serious money.