AdWords Cost Per Click Rises 26% Between 2012 and 2014 »

June 26, 2014 · By Jim Leichenko

Have you been paying more per search click than you used to? So have a lot of advertisers. According to proprietary AdGooroo data, the Cost-Per-Click (CPC) on U.S. AdWords text ads has increased an average of 26% across 9 major industry categories between the first quarters of 2012 and 2014. The data measures desktop and tablet for 2014 and desktop only for 2013 and 2012. 

Rise in Average CPC US AdWords 2012-2014 - AdGooroo

Increases in CPC were most dramatic in the Legal and Automotive categories, where advertisers paid an average of 50% and 45% more per AdWords click, respectively, than they did two years ago.

The category with the lowest increase in CPCs is also the largest in terms of Paid Search spend, Shopping & Classifieds, which primarily includes retailers. Between Q1 2012 and Q1 2014, the average CPC for Shopping & Classifieds advertisers rose just 6%, from $0.72 to $0.77. The only other category with a single digit increase in CPCs was Financial, which rose 9%.

Every other industry category studied experienced double digit increases in CPCs, including Education (31%), Health (30%), Home & Garden (22%), Telecommunications (26%) and Travel (15%).

The Yahoo! Bing Network

Looking at average CPCs on the Yahoo! Bing Network in the U.S. for Q1 2013 to Q1 2014 (AdGooroo does not have Bing data for Q1 2012), we found that prices in 6 of the 9 industry categories were on the rise by an average of 21%.

Rise & Decline in Average CPC on Yahoo Bing Q1 2013-Q1 2014 - AdGooroo

The most substantial year-over-year increase was in the Education category, where CPCs rose 65%.  Two categories had single digit increases in CPCs: Automotive (3%) and Shopping & Classifieds (5%).

At the same time, three categories saw decreases in the average CPC on Yahoo! Bing from Q1 2013 to Q1 2014: Telecommunications (-30%), Home & Garden (-9%) and Travel (-4%).

AdWords and Bing – A CPC Comparison

We also compared the average Cost Per Click on Google AdWords and the Yahoo! Bing Network in the 9 industry categories during Q1 2014. As AdGooroo found in our report Yahoo! Bing PPC Performance Metrics, advertisers pay a premium to gain access to AdWords’ higher volume of searchers and clickthroughs. On average, advertisers paid 45% more per click on AdWords than on Bing in the first three months of 2014. The most significant difference in price between the two search engines was in the Legal category (70%) and Home & Garden (62%).

Google vs Bing CPCs Q1 2014 - AdGooroo



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