Click Through Rate (CTR) is mostly a good thing. CTR is invaluable for monitoring and measuring PPC advertising.
Knowing your CTR gives you a degree of certainty about the relevance of your advertising. It’s like a torch, shining light on whether people searching on Google find your ad relevant, equally whether your Facebook followers find it engaging.
CTR is a percentage figure, calculated by dividing the number of clicks on an ad, by its number of views (impressions).
How Google sees CTR
Good Click Through Rate should improve the visibility of your website, right? An experiment by Bartosz Góralewicz tells otherwise.
Mr Góralewicz replicated a viral response, using stealth tactics to avoid registering as spam. His experiment centred on a keyword that averaged 1,600 searches monthly. He drove traffic for the keyword up by 3781%, his CTR went from 3.2% to more than 80%, and the keyword became a Google Trend.
When it came to search ranking, none of this mattered. Despite almost 1.88 million page views in one fortnight, the page failed to rise in search ranking. Shortly after the experiment, it dropped emphatically.
To exclude CTR from search ranking calculations makes sense from Google’s perspective. CTR is obviously vulnerable to manipulation (e.g. crowd-sourced clicks and bots).
CTR is used in calculating your ad’s Quality Score. With a high enough quality score, you can outrank a competitor without needing to outbid them. Higher Quality Scores reward you by lowering your costs per click and per conversion.
Good CTR for a Google Ads campaign is commonly accepted as starting at 2%. PPC boffins say 2–5% CTR is achievable for competitive industries; 5%+ CTR for non-competitive industries.
On Facebook 0.05% to 0.1% CTR is considered good. CTR below 0.02% is considered poor-performing.
Good PPC campaign management is, of course, more about ROI (Return On Investment) than CTR.
Using CTR to Your Advantage
CTR gives you a grip on your ROI. It will help you spend your advertising dollars wisely. High CTR confirms that your ad resonates with viewers.
Low CTR strongly suggests you should review your ad’s offer, its copy and imagery.
How to improve your CTR
With the right ingredients—the right keywords, captivating copy and images—your ad will target the right audience. What makes people click through is your offer, especially when it carries a sense of urgency (e.g. time-limited offers, flash sales, etc).
- Tool up
With Google Ads, use “ad extensions” to place your phone number, seller ratings and map of your location. With Facebook Ads, choose among the various CTA (Call To Action) buttons and ad formats.
When CTR Goes Bad
High CTR combined with a poor conversion rate is bad. It’s like tyre-kickers and no buyers.
Your problems will most likely be on your Landing Page and could include your offer not being compelling enough.
Troubleshoot using Google Analytics. Check your onsite traffic patterns, bounce rates and exit pages.
Rework as needed.
You may also find our previous post Should You Combine SEO & PPC? of interest: