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Google Ads Benchmarks: Insightful Data for 20 Industries

Google Ads Benchmarks: Insightful Data for 20 Industries

  • Yusuke Imamura

If you have just signed a new client or you’re doing PPC for the first time, it can difficult sometimes to figure out if you are doing an excellent job. Almost all of us want to have unicorn ads with the best conversion rates and the highest CTRs. But, a good measurement of results for one industry can’t be used to gauge the performance of another. What is the data that you should be analyzing in your industry? Here’s an overview of Google Ads Benchmarks for 2020. 

Discover the Google Ads (previously known as Google Google Ads) industry benchmarks our customers are using, and these include: 

  • Average Click-Through Rate for Google Ads
  • Average Cost-Per-Click for Google Ads
  • Average Conversion Rate for Google Ads
  • Average Cost per Action for Google Ads

You will discover averages across these Ads metrics for twenty industries such as Advocacy, Auto, B2B, Dating and Personals, E-Commerce, Education, Employment Services, Consumer Services, Finance & Insurance, Health and Medical, Industrial Services, Home Goods, Legal, Real Estate, Travel & Hospitality and Technology.

Average Click-Through Rate for Google Ads

Google Ads Benchmarks: Insightful Data for 20 Industries

Personal Services and Dating perform better when using PPC since the average CTR is valued at 6%. When your prospects are in search of love, writing compelling and emotional ad copy is quite simple. On the other hand, Advocacy, Auto and Travel are industries with high search CTRs. 

During our collection of data, we noticed that legal services struggle to gain attention in SERP with an utterly low average of 1.35% CTR. This is the result of the advertising limitations set by most government organizations and Google. In the past few years, legal advertisers have enhanced their stats tho.

The industries with the lowest average click-through rates in 2018 are as follows; Consumer Services, Technology, and B2B. However, Google Ads’ average click-through rate across all industries is 3.17% for search and 0.46% for display. 

These two averages are higher than their previous figures years back, and this is wonderful news for Ads advertisers and agencies. 

Average CTR by Industry

Industry  Average CTR (Search)  Average CTR (GDN)
Advocacy 4.41% 0.59% 
Auto 4.00% 0.60%
B2B 2.41% 0.46% 
Consumer Services 2.41% 0.51%
Dating & Personals 6.05% 0.72% 
E-Commerce 2.69% 0.51% 
Education 3.78% 0.53%
Employment Services 2.42% 0.59% 
Finance & Insurance 2.91% 0.52% 
Health & Medical 3.27% 0.59%
Home Goods 2.44% 0.49% 
Industrial Services 2.61% 0.50%
Legal 2.93% 0.59%
Real Estate 3.71% 1.08% 
Technology 2.09% 0.39% 
Travel & Hospitality 4.68% 0.47% 

Average Cost Per Click for Google Ads

Average Cost Per Click for Google Ads

Unsurprising, legal services possess some of the highest CPCs among the entire Google ads on the search network. However, the words “Attorney” and “Lawyer” are among the top ten most expensive keywords on Bing and Google. In the legal industry, the average CPCs are more than $6. On the other hand, consumer services are performing well as it has an average CPC of $6.40. 

The cost per click of Advocacy and non-profit groups is below $2, due to the $2 max CPC bid Google grans. 

Most industries have cheaper CPCs in the Google Display Network. Dating and Personals have a cost per click of over $1 for display ads. Across all industries, the average cost per click in Google Ads is $2.69 for search while it is $0.63 for display. 

The interesting part is that these average costs have significantly increased over the last few years. They used to be $2.32 and $0.58 correspondingly. 

Average CPC by Industry

Industry  Average CPC (Search)  Average CPC (GDN)
Advocacy $1.43 $0.62
Auto $2.46 $0.58
B2B $3.33 $0.79
Consumer Services $6.40 $0.81
Dating & Personals $2.78 $1.49
E-Commerce $1.16 $0.45
Education $2.40 $0.47
Employment Services $2.04 $0.78
Finance & Insurance $3.44 $0.86
Health & Medical $2.62 $0.63
Home Goods $2.94 $0.60
Industrial Services $2.56 $0.54
Legal $6.75 $0.72
Real Estate $2.37 $0.75
Technology $3.80 $0.51
Travel & Hospitality $1.53 $0.44

Average Conversion Rate for Google Ads

Average Conversion Rate for Google Ads

Several years ago, the finance and insurance industries were the leaders when it comes to conversion rates. Our recent data have shown that the Dating and Personal Industry performs better than the rest as its search conversion rates are on average over 90%. Other industries performing incredibly well are Autos, Consumer Services, and Legal Industries. 

Usually, marketers are not scared to alter their offers and their conversion flow to boost their conversion rates. They may also be utilizing strategies to enhance conversion like video landing pages. 

On the other hand, e-commerce clients tend to achieve lower average conversion rates in search and display. They have massive inventories, which limit themselves from modifying an ad copy across all e-commerce keywords. 

Google Ads advertisers should focus on the improvement of their keywords’ performance. They can use high commercial targets to bring out fantastic results off their search campaigns. The average conversion rate in Google Ads across all industries is 3.75% for search and 0.77% for display. 

Search conversion rates have increased significantly since the last time, but display conversion rates have decreased to some extent. This is an indication that display advertisers need to focus on conversion rate optimization and the audience.

Average CVR by Industry

Industry  Average CVR (Search)  Average CVR (GDN)
Advocacy 1.96% 1.00%
Auto 6.03% 1.19%
B2B 3.04% 0.80%
Consumer Services 6.64% 0.98%
Dating & Personals 9.64% 3.34%
E-Commerce 2.81% 0.59%
Education 3.39% 0.50%
Employment Services 5.13% 1.57%
Finance & Insurance 5.10% 1.19%
Health & Medical 3.36% 0.82%
Home Goods 2.70% 0.43%
Industrial Services 3.37% 0.94%
Legal 6.98% 1.84%
Real Estate 2.47% 0.80%
Technology 2.92% 0.86%
Travel & Hospitality 3.55% 0.51%

Average Cost Per Action in Google Ads

Average Cost Per Action in Google Ads

In the last few years, CPAs have witnessed a slight shift. The Autos have recorded the lowest cost per action from industries, with $33. The average cost per action for B2B, real estate, and tech companies is over $100. 

Nevertheless, costs in advertising are expected to increase over time, even if the average CPA is lower now than a few years ago. It is important to note that display CPAs have increased slightly. Across all industries, the average CPA in Google Ads is $48.96 for search and $75.51 for display. 

Average CPA by Industry

Industry  Average CPA (Search)  Average CPA (GDN)
Advocacy $96.55 $70.69
Auto $33.52 $23.68
B2B $116.13 $130.36
Consumer Services $90.70 $60.48
Dating & Personals $76.76 $60.23
E-Commerce $45.27 $65.80
Education $72.70 $143.36
Employment Services $48.04 $59.47
Finance & Insurance $81.93 $56.76
Health & Medical $78.09 $72.58
Home Goods $87.13 $116.17
Industrial Services $79.28 $51.58
Legal $86.02 $39.52
Real Estate $116.61 $74.79
Technology $133.52 $103.60
Travel & Hospitality $44.73 $99.13

What’s the meaning of this?

If your figures are different from the Google Ads Benchmarks mentioned above then you might need to adjust your strategy. Examine where your campaigns are not performing well in comparison to your competitors and adjust accordingly.

You can still make consistent efforts to improve even if you are attaining good results. Write the best ad copy and create a compelling landing page that delivers fantastic results. Maybe our Google Marketing Consultation service can help you out.

Data Sources:

We have referenced Wordstream’s blog here. This comprehensive report is based on a sample of 14,197 United States-based accounts in all verticals. There’s more than $200 million in aggregate Google Ads spend both on display and search that we took into consideration. In each industry, there is a minimum of thirty unique active clients. “Averages” are median values that account for all outliers. 


Q: Are branded keyword included in these figures?

A: The figures exempt advertisers who bid exclusively on branded terms. Averages offered are median values to prevent a big advertiser with a good or bad performance from distorting the average. 

Q: Are you considering the influence of fraud and bots on CTR?

A: The data was retrieved from Adwords, which has provisions for automated or deceptive traffic. On the other hand, reported averages are medians aimed to prevent any twist from any account that may have falsely high CTRs as a result of automatic traffic. 

Q: Is this worldwide data?

A: The data is a sample of the accounts based in the United States. 

Q: What about individuals in the home remodeling, home improvement, and replacement window niches? What’s the industry they fall under?

A: They should be placed under the “Home Goods” Industry. 

Q: Can you define CPA? Based on the product or industry, the action could be a sale or a sign-up for a newsletter. I run several PPC accounts and every customer has a variant meaning of an “action”. 

A: As you mention, the specific definition of CPA differs from industry to industry.

Q: How are conversions and actions defined by category in the real estate for the calculation of CPA and CVR? Can advise me on this? 

A: These conversions are classified as a useful measurement of success for each account. For retailers, this may represent a sale, and for others like the real estate niche, it may be filling a form or a making phone call. 

Q: Do you have an idea of the comparison of the CPCs and CTRs in recent years?

A: There has been a significant rise in the CTRs and a reduction in the CPCs. 

Q: I need clarification on the term “Conversion rate”. Is it the percentage of individuals who click on the ad? For example, 1.9% click on the ad, then 2.7% of that 1.9% make a purchase?

A: The conversion rate is the probability rate of an individual completing the action we want to perform after they click the ad. You can calculate the conversion rate by taking the number of conversions by the number of clicks. 

Q: Why would conversion be higher than CTR? Does it mean the CTR is usually higher than the conversion rate?

A: No. The entire number of conversions will be lesser than the total number of clicks but the conversion rate can be higher. For instance, if one person out of 100 individuals clicks on your ad, but each person who clicks on your ad converts, that is a 1% click-through rate but considered as 100% conversion rate. The conversion rate is dependent on the number of individuals who click, and not the entire number of people who saw your ad. 

Q: Why does e-commerce has a special category? Would that not apply to other categories? 

A: Not all advertisers are into e-commerce. Most of them are into services and lead generation for their businesses. 

Q: What’s the “Advocacy Industry”?

A: Advocacy groups create support, awareness, raising funds for a cause, organization, or policy. 

Q: Does search entail shopping? Or is it text ads only?

A: Shopping campaigns are on the search network

Q: Can you suggest PPC networks better than Google regarding CTR and targeting?

A: Bing is an excellent choice. Bing posts higher CVRs, CPCs, CPAs and CTRs than Google. We have extra benchmarks for Bing here.