What is click through rate?

In online marketing, click through rate (CTR) is a commonly used term in paid advertising to help you understand the success of your ads.

Click through rate is the rate at which your ads are clicked. This is the percentage of people who view your ad (impressions), whether in Google search or on a Facebook feed for example, that then go on to click the ad (clicks) to reach your desired landing page. 


You can calculate your click through rate percentage using the following formula:


(total clicks on an ad / total impressions) x 100


For example, if 200 people see your ad and 20 of these people click on the ad, your click through rate is 10%.


(20 / 200) x 100


Understanding the click through rate of your ads is important to determine the success of a marketing campaign. If you have a low click through rate it may indicate that the ad content itself isn’t suited to the traffic, whereas if you have a high click through rate we can assume that the ad content matches what the user is searching for, causing them to click.


A high click through rate is important, in particular, for pay-per-click advertising (PPC) , such as Google Ads, as it directly impacts your quality score.


WordStream, an online advertising support agency, looked at data across many industries and found that for ‘dating & personals’ the average click through rate across Google Ads is 6.05% for search campaigns and 0.72% for display campaigns. Please note that all campaigns and traffic will perform differently but these should give you a good guide.


Of course, there are also other metrics that should be considered alongside click through rate, such as click to registration rate (also sometimes termed CTR - be careful you know which you’re looking at, as these are very different). A high click through rate but subsequent low click to registration rate may indicate that although the ad content matches the users search criteria, the content on your landing page isn’t suitable and these users will therefore bounce from your page.


You can learn more about click to registration rates and bounce rates here.