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    Google Ads, Benchmark Reports

    Google Ads CPC, CPM, & CTR Benchmarks

    When you're looking for a particular something that you want to buy, do you head to Google or Amazon? According to this Wall Street Journal article, more consumers are heading straight to Amazon, and that's where marketers are starting to shift dollars. Unclear on if this is starting to show up in Q1 numbers, but certainly something to take note of. 

    Now, compare your own numbers to what we found when we calculated over 58 million clicks and nearly 4 billion impressions across Google Search and Display Network in Q1, and be sure to read the Q1 2019 PPC Benchmark Report for additional ad performance trends. Check out our Benchmark Report page for the latest reports by quarter.

    Google Ads Search CPC, CPM, & CTA for Q1 2019 at-a-glance
    In Q1 2019, we analyzed over 1.3 billion ad impressions and over 36 million clicks for ads on Google Search.

    Key Takeaways

    • Median CPC was $1.46
    • Median CPM was $38.40
    • Median CTR was 2.72%

    Google Ads Search CPC jumps 13 cents

    Median CPC increased by 9.8% from last quarter, but is $1.27 cheaper Y/Y.


    Q1 2019 Google Ads Search ad performance data from 1.3B Impressions, 36MM Clicks
    Source: AdStage Inc.

    Google Ads Search CPM rises $3.31

    After analyzing over 1.3 billion ad impressions and over 36 million clicks for ads on Google Search, we found that median CPM reversed its plunge, increasing by 9.4% since last quarter, but is still well below its Y/Y price when it started 2018 $78.44 more expensive than now.

    Q1 2019 Google Ads Search ad performance data from 1.3B Impressions, 36MM Clicks
    Source: AdStage Inc.

    Google Ads Search CTR halts downward slide

    In Q1 2019, median CTR for ads on Google Search halted its downward slide, ticking up 0.03%. But, it still remains 1.52% lower Y/Y.

    Q1 2019 Google Ads Search ad performance data from 1.3B Impressions, 36MM Clicks
    Source: AdStage Inc.

    Google Display Network CPC, CPM, & CTA for Q1 2019 at-a-glance

    In Q1 2019, we analyzed over 2.6 billion ad impressions and nearly 22 million clicks for ads on Google Display Network.

    • Median CPC was $0.30
    • Median CPM was $2.40
    • Median CTR was 0.42%

    Google Display Network CPC drops 26 cents

    In Q1 2019, we found that median CPC decreased by 46.6% from last quarter and is down 46 cents Y/Y.

    Q1 2019 Google Display Network ad performance data from 2.6B Impressions, 22MM Clicks
    Source: AdStage Inc.

    Google Display Network CPM rises 12 cents

    After analyzing over 2.6 billion ad impressions and nearly 22 million clicks for ads on Google Display Network, we found that median CPM increased by 5.3%, but is still down 40 cents Y/Y.

    Q1 2019 Google Display Network ad performance data from 2.6B Impressions, 22MM Clicks
    Source: AdStage Inc.

    Google Display Network CTR remains relatively flat

    Median CTR for ads on Google Display Network had a slight increase by 0.01% since last quarter, and rounding out Q1 well above where it was Y/Y.

    Q1 2019 Google Display Network ad performance data from 2.6B Impressions, 22MM Clicks
    Source: AdStage Inc.

    Google ad trends Q1 2019

    New Budget Planner tool. Like Facebook, Google also spent Q1 making advertising easier on its platform. Its new Budget Planner tool for Google Ads campaigns lets you create a budget plan with clicks or conversions as a key metric, and clicks, spend, or average CPC/CPA as a target. From there, you’ll get a table you can toggle to see how the spend curve changes based on different goals.

    First-price auctions via Ad Manager. Google is also helping marketers get the most bang for their buck with first-price auctions through Google Ad Manager. Previously, bidding worked much like eBay where, for example, if the highest bidder bid $5 for an ad, and the second highest bidder bid $3 for the same ad, the highest bidder would pay $3.01. Now, whatever you bid is what you pay. Google clarified "It's important to note that our move to a single unified first price auction only impacts display and video inventory sold via Ad Manager. This change will have no impact on auctions for ads on Google Search, AdSense for Search, YouTube, and other Google properties, and advertisers using Google Ads or Display & Video 360 do not need to take any action."

    3 new capabilities for Responsive Display Ads. They're designed to improve functionality and reporting:

    • Video Assets: Up to 5 video assets can now be incorporated into responsive display ads. This enhanced functionality also comes an expanded reach to new inventory.
    • Combinations Report: A new combinations report provides insights into the performance of different creative asset combinations.
    • Ad Strength Scorecard: The new ad strength scorecard will measure how well your responsive display ads are set up before they go live.

    Bye bye bad ads & average position metric. Google used Q1 to do a little clean up, too. The company says it removed 2.3 billion “bad ads” that violated its policies and introduced a new Ad Policy Manager to guide ad creators to avoid listing non-compliant ads in the first place. Google also announced it will get rid of its average position reporting metric later this year. At the end of last year, Google introduced four new ad position metrics that indicate the percentage of impressions and impression share your ads received in the absolute top (the first ad at the very top of the page) and top of page (above the organic results) ad slots.

      

    Read the Q1 2019 PPC Benchmark Report for additional ad performance trends on all the major platforms.

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    Breanna Lambert

    Breanna has 10+ years’ experience in marketing, though the tides & trends have pushed her almost exclusively into digital. She lives in the hills above Boulder, CO and spends her downtime outside exploring with her husband, son, and pup.