HomeBlogThe Highest CPC Keywords in Canada

The Highest CPC Keywords in Canada

Author: Elisa Gabbert
Last Updated: November 24, 2021 | Paid Search Marketing

canada's most expensive keywords in adwords

In the past few weeks, we’ve shared new data revealing the most expensive keywords in several English-speaking countries around the world, including:

Today, we bring you the top 25 keywords with the highest costs per click (CPC’s) in Google Ads (formerly known as Google AdWords) for our neighbors to the north, Canada (O Canada!):

The Canadian data set turned up some interesting keywords on the high end of CPC’s – let’s take a look!


Everybody wants to go to Canada

We all know that insurance-related keywords are expensive everywhere, but there was a specific pocket of keywords in our Canadian data set: insurance for super visas (with an average CPC of $21.17 in Canadian dollars).

What the heck is a super visa? It’s a special visa for the parents and grandparents of Canadian citizens that allows those relatives to visit Canada for up to two years without having to renew their visa status. To secure a super visa, you need proof of health insurance that’s valid in Canada.

In November 2016, the Boston Globe reported that a surge in Google searches for “move to Canada” actually forced the Canadian immigration website to go down.

canada search trends

No wonder these keywords are so expensive!

Business is booming

Maybe all those new immigrants are starting small businesses? Many of the top 25 costliest keywords in Canada are related to products and services that businesses need to operate. For example:

  • Point of sale device – This popular and competitive keyword category includes keywords like “restaurant pos system” and “toast pos” (a brand that offers POS systems for restaurants), enabling hungry Canadians and tourists to pay up for poutine and maple syrup pie.

Mm, curdy

  • Calling software – Another top 5 keyword category in Canada, including examples like “telemarketing software” and “cold calling software.” It must be tough to work around those strict Canadian anti-spam laws – better make sure your calling software is compliant!
  • Merchant account – This is a type of bank account that allows you to accept credit card payments. Again, useful if you’re running a business (and like to get paid).

You’ll see more business keywords peppered throughout the list – “payment services,” “voice of the customer technology,” “business software” … do Canadians ever go on vacation?

They’re also polishing up their websites with “site search,” creating marketing videos that need “stock music,” and looking for help with their “social media marketing management.”

Buying a new home in Canada? You might need help with the plumbing

“Plumber” and “hot water tank” searches were both among the most expensive in our Canadian data set – since “plumber” tends to be an emergency, “fix it now!” kind of search, those keywords are expensive everywhere. And in often-frigid Canada (the average daily high in Winnipeg in winter is 15 degrees) it’s not surprising that people often have to replace their water heaters.

canadian weather trends

“Moving services” also cracked the top 20 – again, could be a sign that a lot more people are moving to Canada these days.

What about the Canadian keywords stood out to you?

About the data

Here’s how we got the list: We pulled all the data collected from anonymous AdWords Performance Grader reports across all industries between June 1, 2016 and June 12, 2017, then looked at the top 1000 most expensive keywords seen during that time period and categorized them by core intent.

For example, we lumped the keywords “bail bonds” and “bail bonds los angeles” into a single category since the core intent is the same. Likewise, keywords involving different types of lawyers (such as “malpractice lawyer” and “injury lawyer”) or insurance were grouped together. We used a similar methodology last time so as to avoid featuring too many specific long-tail or local keywords that wouldn’t have broad applicability to a large number of businesses. We separated distinct services (pest control vs. termites) as much as possible.

We also filtered out keywords with less than 100 clicks from our data set. We only looked at advertisers bidding in USD, GBP, AUD, CAD, and ZAR, and analyzed different currencies separately. We also eliminated non-English ads and duplicates (where both the keyword and the CPC were exactly the same) from that set. The results you’re reading about in this article are in CAD.

Shout out to everyone who helped compile, analyze, and illustrate the data: our data analyst Josh Brackett, our web team leader Meg Lister, and our designer Kate Lindsay.

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Meet The Author

Elisa Gabbert

Elisa Gabbert is WordStream’s Director of Content and SEO. Likes include wine, karaoke, poker, ping-pong, perfume, and poetry.


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