Thursday, September 20, 2007

Google AdWords Average CTR and Best Practices

A previous post here covered average click-through rates for email newsletter advertising, email campaigns and website banner ads. As noted, DoubleClick provides fairly reliable data across those media.

It's surprisingly difficult, however, to get meaningful data on the average click-through rate (CTR) for Google AdWords ads. This discussion on Webmaster World reports various experiences: 0.6%-1.2%, 1%-2% and 3%-5%. PayPerPost puts the figure at 0.5-1.5%; and Hochman Consultants pegs the average at 0.7-1.5%. Across all of the sources I was able to find, the average fell into the range of 1.1-2.2%. That range includes both B2B and B2C ads (the latter tend to generate higher CTRs). On the B2B side, I'd place the average Google AdWords CTR in the range of 0.9-1.4%.

So—how can you optimize your Google AdWords CTR to beat those averages? Recently added to WebMarketCentral is a list of 14 Best Practices in Search Engine Marketing. These best practices include:
  • Use free online tools such as Google Suggest and Overture's Keyword Selector Tool to help select the most popular search terms relevant to your campaign.

  • Write compelling, carefully targeted ad copy.

  • Track, analyze, optimize and test everything: ad copy, landing pages, keyword bids and response incentives.

  • Design and implement effective lead follow-up programs; without proper follow up, you're wasting money.

  • Circle back and use search marketing data to improve your natural SEO by optimizing for the most valuable terms (combination of impressions and conversions). Natural search results are 3-4 times more likely to get clicked than paid ads, so it's critical for your website to show up well in both organic and paid search for key search terms.

See the entire list of SEM best practices here.


Contact Tom Pick: tomATwebmarketcentralDOTcom


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