One of the most difficult aspects of marketing is having the confidence that your campaigns are delighting your customers and feeding your bottom line. One step towards reassurance lies in knowing your industry’s clickthrough rates and using them as a benchmark for your efforts.
You know how it works: a lower CTR than the industry standard means something needs tweaking in your marketing game. And vice versa when you are seeing a higher CTR than the industry norm — you know something is working. A knock-on effect of low CTRs makes your efforts to compete even more difficult. It affects your Google ad placements — reducing the impressions and clicks on your carefully thought-out ads.
Now check out the average Google Adwords click rate benchmarks across various industries:
(Image source: https://www.wordstream.com/average-ctr)
Knowing these average CTRs is great, but the #1 question you want to answer is this: is your CTR — whether it’s higher or lower than industry rates — bringing in enough conversions that improves your bottom line? Your answer changes everything. Below are four strategies to help improve your clickthrough rates:
#1 Select keywords that real customers search for in Google
Top of the funnel (TOFU) keywords are important, but if your current objective is to attract bottom of the funnel (BOFU) customers, you’ll need to use relevant phrases/words for ready-to-buy-customers. While realtor, for instance, is a real estate keyword with a nearly 3,000,000 monthly search volume, it’s not necessarily a keyword people looking to engage with your real estate services use on Google.
(Image source: Neil Patel’s Ubersuggest)
Much of this search volume comes from people with no intention of buying your services. Instead, include keywords your target customers uses in relation to the services you provide — keywords like best realtor in New York, buy a home in Atlanta or buy white Nike shoes online. TOFU keywords, conversely, come in handy for customers who you can convert into ready-to-buy customers as they proceed with their buyer journey. In general, keywords reveal intent. You want to select and bid for keywords that helps achieve your current marketing goals.
#2 Bid on keywords that match your goals
Are you looking to attract top or bottom of the funnel customers? Your answer should guide the keywords you pick. Keywords that attract clicks from ready-to-buy customers are different from those that draw in prospects who are simply curious (TOFU). In real estate, for instance, keywords like the ones below work better for BOFU customers — even though they don’t reach the same level of search volume compared to terms like realtor:
These keywords are used mostly by real estate customers who are at the end of their buying journeys. Choosing the right keywords for your goals can be a frustrating process, but the results are worth the stress. The folks over at AdNabu — a Google AdWords Software brand — put it this way: “Sometimes it is really intimidating to select the right keywords for a good AdWords campaign. The truth of the matter comes down to researching your keywords wisely. Take the time to learn the distinct set of choices available between selecting long tail keywords (to approach limited but highly targeted audience) and mainstream keywords (to get more and more traffic).”
#3 Select keywords priced within budget
‘Realtor’ is an of a keyword that won’t lead to high CTRs for many businesses. With a 3 million monthly search volume, it’s safe to assume the biggest industry players in real estate are spending good money bidding on the keyword, making it an uphill battle for other businesses trying to get traffic for the keyword. You want to look for keywords — within your budget — that will deliver great ROI. So how do you select keywords within your budget? Google Planner is a great start. Look at the suggested bid for your keyword and calculate your Adwords budget from there. Jeff Sauer of Jeffalytics proffers another tool for calculating Google Adwords :
For his calculator, enter the necessary details required in the tool and you’ll see what your Adwords budget can get you — including your net revenue per lead and actual return on paid search investment.
#4 Get an experienced PPC Agency
You don’t want to burn all your ad budget on inexperience, so outsource the PPC campaigns if you’re not well versed with them. Insurance firms, for instance, compete for the most expensive keywords in the search marketing sphere. In WordStream’s top 20 most expensive keywords in Google Adwords Advertising, insurance was the #1 keyword on the list:
(Image source: https://www.wordstream.com/articles/most-expensive-keywords)
Firms in the insurance space must approach their PPC campaigns with a watchful eye. Don’t take chances with your budget. Hire an expert or agency who knows what they’re doing.
The average click rate benchmark for many companies is above 2%. If, however, you’re seeing a click rate below this or a rate below what other firms see in your industry, fret not. It only means there’s room for improvement. And if you’re already above 2% of your industry average click rate, it’s a safe time to experiment and become even better at your game.