Click-Through Rate (CTR) -
Learn How to Raise Your Click Through Rates

Click-through rate (CTR) is a measure of the percentage of clicks advertisers receive out of total ad impressions. "Impressions" refers to the number of times your ad is viewed. If your ad has a log of impressions but no clicks, you will have a low CTR, which generally reduces the effectiveness of your campaigns.
Achieving a high click-through rate is essential to your PPC success, because it directly affects both your Quality Score and how much you pay every time someone clicks your search ad. Are your click-through rates holding you back, or are they high enough? Grade your AdWords Click-Through Rate now and learn:
  • How your ads are performing across your account
  • How your CTRs compare to industry benchmarks
  • How click-through rate affects your Quality Score
Plus see how you're doing at landing page optimization,
Quality Score optimization, use of AdWords best practices and more!

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Click-Through Rates
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So What Is Click-Through Rate, Anyway?

Click-through rate (CTR) is a metric that measures the number of clicks advertisers receive on their ads per their number of impressions. In this tutorial you'll learn:

  • A click-through rate formula – exactly how click-through rate is calculated.
  • Why click-through rate is important to your pay-per-click marketing account.
  • What constitutes a good click-through rate for PPC, and how you can get one.

As mentioned above, PPC click-through rate is the rate at which your PPC ads are clicked. This number is the percentage of people who view your ad (impressions) and then actually go on to click the ad. A click through rate calculation looks like this:

click through rate definition

Click Through Rate = (Total Clicks on Ad) / (Total Impressions)

Generally, you can view your click-through rate within the dashboard of your PPC account.

Why Do Click-Through Rates Matter?

Click-through rate is important to your account because it directly affects your Quality Score.

Google AdWords and other search marketing platforms offer pricing discounts for ads that offer high relevance (read: make searchers happy with their search engine results). One means for doing this is to offer higher Quality Scores to ads with high AdWords click-through rates:

  • High click-through rates lead to high Quality Scores.
  • High Quality Scores allow you to improve or maintain ad position for lower costs.

Additionally, if you are advertising on relevant queries, achieving a high click-through rate means that you are driving the highest possible number of people to your offering.

What's A "Good" Click-Through Rate?

This is a hotly debated topic: what constitutes a good click-through rate?

From a purely statistical standpoint, it depends.

Take a look at Yahoo's answer to the "what's a good click-through rate" question:

The honest answer to the question is, “It depends.” Click-through rates are naturally going to vary from campaign to campaign, and even from keyword to keyword. Everything involved in the way your ad is displayed plays a part, from your ad copy to the ad’s ranking on the results page.

So while you want to have a "high" click-through rate, there's really no magic number. Generally speaking, as we mentioned above, you want as high a click-through rate as possible.

Except when you don't.

When Higher Click Through Rates Are Actually Bad For Business

If a keyword isn't pertinent to your business or isn't going to generate sales, leads, branding gains, etc. then a high click-through rate for that term is actually bad for business. The reasoning for this is fairly clear:

  • You're paying for every click.
  • A lot of clicks generate a lot of ad spend.
  • Sometimes you're generating clicks on keywords that are priced too high, and won't turn a profit even if they convert.
  • Irrelevant terms and clicks are just spending money without bringing in additional business.

So you don't always want higher click-through rates: what you want are high CTRs on keywords that are:

  • Relevant : Have to do with your ad text, your landing page, and your offering.
  • Affordable : Keywords that aren't going to be profit-prohibitive.

So, in a nut shell, a good click through rate means first targeting the right words, then getting as many people as you can to click on those ads.

Achieving Strong Click-Through Rates For Your Ads

A pay-per-click solution for click-through rate, then, should provide you with:

  • Targeted keywords to bid on.
  • A means of discovering cheaper, cost-efficient clicks.
  • Tools and methodology for closely integrating keywords with ad text and landing pages.
  • The ability to quickly and efficiently segment keyword groups to generate closer targeting.

WordStream answers each of these challenges with WordStream Advisor, our search engine marketing platform:

  • Targeted Keywords: The software offers keyword research and keyword analytics tools that generate extensive, highly relevant clicks.
  • Cost-effective Clicks: WordStream offers best-in-class Quality Score management tools and a unique means for identifying long tail keywords, ensuring that you are discovering the cheapest and most relevant clicks possible.
  • Additional Tools: Finally, you need to actually create compelling ad text (text that relates to what the person was searching for in the first place), have them relate to your keywords, and have them synced with your landing pages.
  • Keyword Grouping: WordStream offers sophisticated keyword grouping tools that make it easy to create tightly related ad groups and well-organized campaigns.

Are Your Click-Through Rates Optimized?

Not sure if your CTRs are where they need to be? Get an instant, FREE report that analyzes your AdWords click-through rates and other key metrics with our AdWords Performance Grader. Click through rate analysis has never been easier!

Bad click through rate