What is Average or Good value of CTR (Click Through Rate)?

Click Through Rate or CTR is the average number of clicks you get per 100 page impressions. For example if you have a page which is viewed say 1000 times and it generates 45 clicks then the Click through rate of that particular page is 4.5%. Note that click through rate of a page is the sum total of the click through rate of all the ad units. For example if you have three ads displayed on your page, and out of the 45 clicks you got, 20 are from ad 1, 15 are from Ad 2, and 10 from Ad 3, then the CTR of Ad 1 is 2%, of Ad2 its 1.5% and that of Ad 3 is 1%. The CTR of your page = 2%+1.5%+1%= 4.5%. Other terms you need to know which are related to CTR are

  • CPM = Cost per thousand Impressions. Also called eCPM by Google Adsense.
  • CPC = Cost Per Click. Also called EPC or earnings per click.
Adwords CTR for specific keywords: If you are interested in finding out what is the average CTR you will get for a particular set of keywords if you advertise with Google Adwords, use the following two links:
  • Adwords keyword tool : Using this you can find the number of impressions you get for a particular keywords. You can also get ideas for related keywords, average CPC, and advertiser competition, etc.
  • Google Adwords Traffic Estimator : Here you can find exactly how many clicks are generated by particular keyword. If you are really interested in finding out the Adwords CTR for a particular keyword, then you can divide the number of clicks by page impressions (got from the above adwords keyword tool) and multiply by 100.

Stunning discovery: I have recently discovered that the income I get by displaying Adsense and Chitika together is significantly more than my Adsense income alone. Thank you Chitika !. If you have visitors from U.S and Canada who come directly from search engines, I strongly recommend you try Chitika linx and Chitika Mega unit. However only quality blogs are accepted by Chitika. Be sure to boast about your blog when you apply. More info on Chitika.

When I started blogging I was very eager to find out what is considered a good value of CTR. Unfortunately i did not easily find a satisfying answer to this on the internet and that is exactly why I am writing this post. There are two reasons why you wont easily find an answer to 'What is an average CTR?' or 'What is considered a good CTR?' on the internet.
  1. The value varies a lot if you take into consideration regular visitors to your site. Visitors arriving to your blog or website from Search Engines like Google or Yahoo are much more likely to click on ads and it is possible say something in general about their behavior. But your regular visitors. They may not click your ads at all, because either they are ad blind to your website or they are not actively looking for some information or whatever reason.
  2. The Terms and Conditions of Advertising Networks like Google Adsense prevent publishers from disclosing the values of CTR. That is why I am not going to talk anything about what CTR or CPM I get from Adsense or any other network. I will just talk about generalities of pay-per-click advertising and completely forgetting my information, i will base the entire post on some references which are already available on the internet. So if you want to know details of my average CTR, CPM or CPC, there is nothing for you here.
What is the Best value of CTR that you can achieve?
Again I am going to assume that all your visitors come from search engines, so this discussion CTRonly applies to such visitors. In my opinion (which is based on the adsense testimonial given below and some hard google search), the best possible CTR is between 6% to 10%. I am not talking of Google Adsense CTR here. By this CTR i mean the CTR of the page, which is sum total of all the CTR of all the ads placed on your page (these ads may include adsense, chitika and other ads). It seems possible to arrange the layout of your page, ad formats and color schemes in such a way that say one in 10 visitors to your site or blog clicks on an ad. This is the best you can hope for and it is indeed achieved by some as seen on this Adsense testimonial. Please keep in mind that I am only talking about search engine or Google visitors here. For my blog almost all visitors are from Google.

What is the average value of CTR that people get?
According to this webpage the average value of CTR for a general pay per click program is between 3 to 7%. Even this blog entry puts the average CTR at 3%. If you google hard enough you will realize that the webmasters and publishers around the globe seems to put the average CTR at 3%. (My own CTR is very different from 3%). Most of the publishers actually do not manage to even reach 2% either because they do not have enough search engine or google visitors, or they do not optimize their ads well enough or both. So if you are getting less than 3% CTR for search engine visitors, then it means you should pay attention to your ads optimization and try to improve your CTR. Remember it may take a couple of months of experimenting with your layout and finding the right ad configuration and right Advertising Networks (for me Google Adsense and Chitika work best) to achieve the optimal value of CTR.

How to improve your CTR?
There is a one word answer to this question - Experimenting. You have to really experiment, try different combinations, try different advertising networks in order to find the right set of ads, right colors which work for you. For me Google Adsense + Chitika works best. These two advertising networks give me a CTR which I now think is hard to improve. So I have started focusing on traffic now. Here are some tips which I would like to share with you regarding improving your CTR.
  1. Bigger ads have better CTR. For example a 160x600 skyscraper is better than 120x600 skyscraper. 336x280 wide rectangle is better than 300x250.
  2. Ads placed near content have better CTR.
  3. Ads placed between the title of your post and the content (on the top) seem to have the highest CTR. For me the wide rectangle just at the beginning of the post has a very good CTR.
  4. Blue links for ads usually work better because people are used to seeing blue links (Hint: Google has blue links for search results). Try #0000ff or #000080 for links on white background.
  5. Experiment! Experiment!! Experiment !!! - Let me explain this with a simple example. I have a wide rectangle at the bottom of my post. It was initially aligned to the left. I realized that aligning it to the center almost increased its CTR 1.5 times the previous value. Things like this can only be found out by experimenting. For Adsense and Chitika, use Custom Channels and Channels respectively to test your experiments with layouts and ad formats. Also remember that any experiment should be run at least for a week in order to draw fair and logical conclusions.
If you are using Google Adsense, you can also use the above two links under the title "Adwords CTR" to actually calculate what is the average Adsense CTR that publishers get (or equivalently Adwords CTR that advertisers get) that people get for a particular keyword and compare it with yours. However it is important to use all the related keywords rather than just one keyword while doing such analysis.

A comparison of CTR of various advertising networks.
  • Google Adsense CTR - The Best !! Nothing beats Google Adsense CTR. Wish I could disclose my own value of CTR but am forbidden by Adsense TOC.
  • Chitika CTR - Excellent !! According to Chitika Blog the top Chitika publishers get a CTR of over 1.6%. I have certainly seen levels above that. If you are looking for something to use with (or as an alternative) for adsense, you must try Chitika Linx and Chitika Mega Unit (550x250).
  • Adbrite CTR - Poor.
  • Bidvertiser CTR - Almost close to zero. In several cases less than 0.1%.
Would you be interested in sharing your opinion in a comment?

Blogging for Money, Earn Regular Income

  • Make Money Online from a Blog - Step by Step Guide

  • How much do bloggers earn? A vague estimate of blogging income and a statistical overview of money that bloggers make online.

  • Make Money Online from Home: Blogging - the most efficient way of earning money online. Some tips to start your own blog and turn it into a make money blog.

  • Get Paid to Blog - List of various paid blogging networks where you can get paid to write blog posts, sponsored reviews or display blogging ads. A useful way of earning income from your blog in addition to Google Adsense or other advertising money.

  • May 12, 2009


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