While click-through rates (CTR) tend to carry a lot of weight with marketing service providers, it is by no means a one-size-fits-all calculation. CTR refers to the percentage of clicks on an ad compared to how many times it was displayed. So, for example, if an ad is displayed 10,000 times and receives 140 clicks, this would generate a CTR of 1.4%. You’ll see this calculation in nearly all ad reports, but what does this really mean for your campaign success?
You’ll find plenty of data online showing average CTR for specific industries and platforms, but these averages are all relative. They are often clumped together and generalized, not taking into account individual campaigns and goals. Ultimately, CTR can provide you with helpful information, but it shouldn’t be the main area of focus for the majority of digital display ads.
Key criteria to keep in mind when analyzing your CTR:
There are many variables that can impact CTR, so it is important to keep in mind what your ultimate goal is. Then, consider what metrics can best measure whether this goal was met. If your goal is to reach as much of the audience as possible and have a higher level of frequency, CTR might not mean much at all. If you are promoting something that is likely to result in an off-platform action, then CTR isn’t as important as other actions in your campaign.
In general, a high CTR is often a good sign, but it is not the ultimate measure of campaign success. If your goal is to drive as much quality traffic as possible within a target audience, then you should be looking for a much higher CTR. It is commonly believed that a high CTR is equated with better quality clicks, but this is not necessarily the case. CTR is influenced by many factors, including if your targeting is done right, the quality of your creative, whether the messaging is resonating with the target audience, the effectiveness of the call to action, and much more. These will all impact your CTR and generally how well your ad performs. Overall, CTR can be a helpful metric to consider, but only in relation to how it influences your goals and campaign objectives.