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Get the basics right: One quick step to improve your AdWords CTR

There were many questions posted on this Community around CTR (clickthrough rate). In many cases it depends on your product or service, as well as on your ad texts, keywords, settings, the Quality Score etc. In order not to confuse you with too many details, here is one way to analyse your keywords performance and improve your CTR.


What is CTR and what is a good CTR?
Please read this article written by Kim, our Top Contributor Alumni.


Analyse the account data:

In order to start improving your CTR, you need to understand your data first. Try the following:

  • Run a report to analyse your CTR for each ad group over the past few months.
  • If you see that certain ad group is underperforming, run a report to analyse the ad groups at a keyword level by running a keyword diagnosis to see if there are particular keywords that have a low CTR and are bringing down the overall CTR.

Take action:

  • Remove the keywords that are not performing well. To remove underperforming keyword/s, first select them and then click on the Change status button at the top of the table and click Delete.

Additional resources: Issues with clicks and CTR



Have a question? Ask the AdWords experts.



October 2012 - last edited October 2012

Hi Zee,


I have a question that came up recently in another thread about wether you should pause or delete underperforming keywords.


Do you delete them or just pause them?


I was under the impression that paused keywords are still seen in the system as "active" therefore could still negatively effect your overall account performance so deleting them is a better option in the long run.


You mentioned to delete them in this post but could you maybe clarify this one for all of us so we know what the best thing to do is?


Zee Community Manager
October 2012

Hi Purefuzz, 


I've included a link for questions about CTR and keywords here. Smiley Happy


Here is an answer to your question: If you have a poorly performing keywork in your account, it doesn't matter if you pause it or remove it, the performance will be reflected in the history of the account. If you pause the keyword, having it there doesn't affect it anymore than it did when it was running. There's no difference between pausing it a deleting it - you're basically just stopping it from continuing to have a negative/neutral/positive impact on your account.