What CTR Should I Aim For?

CTR is a generally accepted marker for how well a campaign is doing. The higher the CTR, the better the adverts are being responded to. What are the CTR benchmarks for different types of advertising though? This can depend on a myriad of factors, however. Where and when your ads are served, what they say, how they look etc can all massively change performance.


Should I be focusing on CTR?

You should keep in mind that while CTR implies people are interested in your ads, a high CTR should only be your goal if:

  1. Your ad campaign only wants to drive views of a page or post.
  2. You are entirely unable to track conversions.

If you are capable of tracking what you really what from an ad (such as sales) then you should do that instead. All ads should have a clear purpose. Making your ad work towards that purpose will massively increase the value you get from your advertising.


CTR Formula

The CTR equation is:

CTR Formula or Click Through Rate EquationClick to enlarge

CTR = (Clicks x 100) ÷ Ad impressions


CTR Benchmarks

The overall internet average for display campaigns is 0.1% CTR – this means that one person clicks for every time one thousand impressions are shown.

Many ad agencies demand at least 0.2% from their display ad campaigns, but in reality, every ad has its own average CTR level, and this is the only thing that matters to you. Also, keep in mind that this average includes the multitudes of terrible ads out there driving the averages down.

For Video Ads around 10% would be considered an average CTR, with good ads performing more in the 20-30% range.

For PPC campaigns, the minimum you should expect is a CTR is 5%. This means one click occurs every 20 times an ad is shown. PPC click-through rates are incredibly variable, however, and again, the only thing that should matter to you is increasing the CTR of your campaign.

For Facebook ads, the overall average CTR is about 1% but again this is incredibly variable. This is because there is such a massive difference in the types of ads you can put on there. A good CTR would be  2-5% but a well-targeted campaign could easily be in the 20-30% range.

Email marketing CTORs of around 20-30%  are also not unreasonable to expect. A CTOR has the advantage over a CTR however in that the user has already shown they are interested by opening the email!

Just to look at the other side of the coin quickly – for AdSense you would probably expect a CTR of 0.5-3%. This is because you probably have multiple ads on your site, as well as many other things to click on, so CTRs from your site will likely be quite low.


CTR Benchmarks


Calculator IconWork out the Click-Through Rate of your campaigns with our CTR Calculator >


What should I do about my CTR?

Whatever results you get, you can always improve on. To do that effectively you need to know what it is you are aiming for. To know that you need to find out your own average CTR.

This is the simplest part of the optimising process – just set up your ad campaign and let it run for a few days. To get a good look at how your campaign can do, start off broad. You should have a few different ads running simultaneously covering a wide range of keywords/sites so that you can see what is good for you.



CTR Definition (Click Through Rate)


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