What is a good click-through rate (CTR)? CTR for email, Google Ads, Facebook ads, and more

What is a good click-through rate (CTR)? CTR for email, Google Ads, Facebook ads, and more

Joanna Kaminska
Joanna Kaminska (Smartlook Team)  |  Last updated: Feb 15, 2023
8 mins read
Discover the CTR formula, CTR averages, benchmarks across different industries and come up with what’s a good click-through rate for your business.

Digital marketing metrics and KPIs are useful for marketers to measure and track performance of their efforts. The most popular are traffic source, conversion rate, cost per lead, click-through rate, and many more.

Today, we’ll focus on click-through rate, called CTR for short. 

CTR is an engagement metric in online marketing to measure the success of your marketing activity. In most cases, it’s associated with paid advertising. But you can use CTR across other channels such as website, email, social media, or organic search.

Read the article to discover: 

Let’s dive into it.

What is a click-through rate (CTR)?

CTR measures how effective your content is in getting your viewers’ attention. The metric provides you with a big picture because you can see at a glance if people engage with your content after viewing it. 

The CTR is very versatile because it helps you evaluate:

  • Ad campaign performance
  • Effectiveness of your headline and meta description in searches
  • Email title impact

Curious how to calculate it? 

How to calculate CTR

Click-through rate is the total number of clicks your link gets divided by the total number of impressions (views).

CTR formula =  total number of clicks / total number of impressions * 100%

CTR is important for you because it limits the guesswork. You don’t have to wonder if your headline, ad copy, or link(s) work well and persuade people to click. 

High CTR confirms that your offer is interesting for those who saw it. Low CTR signal that you’re targeting the wrong audience, or they don’t understand the benefits of your offer.

But, you’re probably the most interested in what it means to have a good CTR. Below, you’ll find many statistics that indicate averages in various industries. By knowing the average CTR for each channel in every industry, you’ll be closer to getting insight into what’s a good CTR. 

What is a good click-through rate?

This question is very common among marketers, but be careful – it’s hard to give one, ultimate answer.

CTR varies across industries, channels, keywords you choose to rank for and many more. The most valid CTR comparison comes from checking benchmarks for your industry. 

To help you check all the important benchmarks, we’ve gathered them in one place. Below, you’ll find CTR averages for email, Google Ads, Facebook ads, and YouTube

What is a good CTR for email

According to Hubspot, the average click-through rate for email in different industries is as follows:

They state that the manufacturing and health industries led the pack for the highest CTR. The financial industry came in last with the lowest CTR at 6.82%.

The best way to evaluate if your CTR is good is to benchmark it against the above table. If the click-through rate of your emails is higher than the industry average – congratulations – consider it a good CTR. 

On the other hand, if you struggle with your email CTR or you want to increase it, you can make some tweaks in your emails. 

How to improve email CTR:

  • Use an email automation tool to personalize your message to your reader (include the company name, person’s names, or other unique elements)
  • Create attractive and clear call-to-action buttons in your email (check if the links work)
  • Segment your users into groups based on specific traits
  • Send emails to your users at the right time (e.g., mind the time zone differences)
  • Don’t spam your email base and don’t send emails to those who never engage with them

Implement those tips and see how it influences your email click-through rate. 

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What are good CTRs in Google Ads

According to Instapage, the Google Ads CTR average across all industries equals 5.06% for searches, with:

  • A high of 7.83% in the travel & tourism industry
  • A low of 3.27% for law & government

See the different industries and their CTR averages below.

Remember that those averages are just to provide you with a bigger picture. Your company is unique, so treat those benchmarks as a nice bonus, not the deciding factor for your business.

Instead, focus on your ad results, use A/B tests and juggle different keywords. Check what works and what doesn’t for your company.

Moreover, Google for its ads has some mechanisms worth knowing. Each ad is ranked according to Ad Rank that includes six factors:

  • Your bid
  • The quality of your ads and landing page
  • The Ad Rank thresholds
  • The competitiveness of an auction
  • The context of the person’s search
  • The expected impact from your ad extensions and other ad formats

Also, the higher the CTR, the better is the Ad Rank. You can find all the details here

What is a good CTR for Facebook ads

According to Wordstream, the average click-through rate for Facebook ads in all industries is equal to 0.90%. See the different industries and their CTR averages below.

Facebook ads are becoming more expensive, so it’s important to optimize your ads. Ads optimization will help you burn less money. 

Also, to increase your CTR, and later on, conversion rates, try the following tips for your Facebook ads:

  • Speak directly to your audience and speak their language
  • Use external tools for better targeting and target your buyer personas separately
  • Stand out with your ads creatives, experiment with new formats and ads copy

What is a good CTR for YouTube

On YouTube, click-through rate will tell you how popular your videos are. CTR for YouTube shows how many people clicked your video thumbnail compared to how many people saw it. 

CTR also helps you evaluate if your thumbnail and video title are working and are persuasive. You can see your overall CTR and other stats in your analytics panel.

In “Reach,” you’ll see the number of impressions and your CTR. 

According to Databox, the average CTR for most creators on YouTube is 4–5%. You can see all the details below:

So, a good click-through rate for YouTube lies somewhere between 5 and 20%. Remember that to improve your CTR, you should also look at other metrics that indicate watchers’ engagement with your video.

For example, you can analyze CTR with an average view duration as per 1 video. This additional dimension will give you a complete picture of your video attractiveness. 

Compare your average view duration with the total duration of your video to see to what point on average your watchers get. 

For example, if you have a good CTR (let’s say 8%) and low average view duration (1 minute per 30-minute video) it can indicate that your content is not interesting to your audience. Also, maybe the title promises something that’s not covered during the video. 

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How to improve your click-through rate (CTR)

Now, knowing the average CTRs for various channels and industries, you’ll no doubt like to learn more about how to improve your results.

There are plenty of ways to do so, but besides simple tricks we’ve already mentioned, you can use tools that can help too. Read how funnels and heatmaps can take you closer to the results you want. 

Improve a CTR with a help of funnel analysis

When it comes to funnel analysis, CTR shows how many visitors on your website were attracted to proceed to the next step of a funnel

Although it’s common to think of funnel analysis as a measurement for conversion rates, for steps that don’t directly lead to conversions, you can accept the CTR measurement. Usually, the last step in a funnel shows you the conversion rate. 

How to improve CTRs with funnels? See how many of your visitors proceeded to the next funnel step (e.g., out of 264 visitors who could proceed to the next step, 195 visitors did just that). This indicates a CTR that equals ca. 74%.

If you want to increase the CTR, you can watch a session recording of this step to see why those 26% of visitors didn’t click to proceed to the next step. This will provide you with ideas on how to improve the experience of those who dropped off

Improve a CTR with a help of a heatmap 

Heatmaps are a good starting point when it comes to tracking click-through rate on your website, mobile app, or product.

With a heatmap, you can see that visitors are clicking on parts of the page that aren’t linked but could be. For example, if you see that visitors click on tiles that are non-interactive, you could increase your CTR by making them clickable. 

And with heatmaps, you can check your CTR metric for each button. Verify which buttons and parts of your website are popular. You can easily do this by marking a specific area on an already generated heatmap, like on the picture below. 

Thanks to heatmaps, you will quickly know what’s going on with your website and what parts need improvement. Also, you’ll be able to identify anomalies and work on them to improve your CTR.

Read a real case study in which heatmaps helped improve a CTR by 276%.

Start improving your click-through rate today

It’s your turn, now – set your own goals, hypotheses, and compare your click-through rate over time. Keep in mind that CTR is just one of many metrics to be taken care of. Don’t forget about your website traffic, traffic sources, and most importantly – conversion rates. 

And if you want to analyze visitor behavior more in-depth, use a behavioral analytics tool to make your work easier. Try Smartlook either by scheduling a demo or starting your no-risk 30-day free trial today.

Joanna Kaminska
Joanna Kaminska

is a content marketing strategist at Smartlook. She is a seasoned writer interested in storytelling, SaaS and new technologies. Her goal is to create content that is easy to understand for all. After work, she enjoys hiking and nature photography. | LinkedIn profile

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