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Strange CTR Drop

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

I'm running two similar ad campaigns: one with nationwide targeting, another is local. The CTR of local campaign keeps decreasing since mid July (Jul 16-18) for no apparent reason.

I checked the history tool and it shows absolutely no changes made within that period of time or anywhere nearby.

I thought it could be possibly due to increased competition and losing the placement position. Therefore I analysed the campaign in general and two largest adgroups. One of these adgroups shows losing the positions (insignificant) while having significant CTR drop. Another adgroup as well as campaign overall doesn't have any significant avg.position change but CTR keeps dropping. The charts can be accessed at https://www.box.com/s/050897b7cbb8be056154

I'm losing too many visitors and can't do anything. Can anyone please give me some idea what to do?

6 Expert replyverified_user
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Accepted by Zee (Community Manager)
September 2015

Re: Strange CTR Drop

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 18
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

For last 2 days the CTR gone up again but it's too short time to make any conclusions. I looked deeper at some ads and tried some minor tweaks (i.e. having 2 ads in a group for the same time to compare CTR) but no major work. I will follow some suggestions above and keep you guys informed. Thanks for support!

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Re: Strange CTR Drop

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 2
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Can you filter your results for Google search placements only (vs. search partners)?  I'd be curious if it's something related to the search partners.

Re: Strange CTR Drop

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Thanks for suggestion. I tried it and apparently over last couple weeks Google search CTR is 2-3 times lower than search partners'. Month ago it was almost the same.

Re: Strange CTR Drop

Top Contributor
# 4
Top Contributor

Hello searchgain; welcome to our Community;


  • Why have you excluded the option of increased competition resulting in higher bids?
  • What has happened to your quality score ? Has it dropped respectively with the drop in CTR ?
  • Do you have similar keywords in both ad-groups that could be competing among themselves?

-Moshe

 

Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
Did you find any helpful responses or answers to your query? If yes, please mark it as the ‘Best Answer’

Re: Strange CTR Drop

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 5
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Dear Moshe,
Thanks for response.
- Higher competition bids (without increasing our bid) would lead to lower placement positions. Apparently this insignificantly happened only to one of many adgroups. Overall placement position remained the same
- Quality score is still 8-10 so no drop yet
- I have about 10 adgroups and they don't compete, they advertise for different products within same category.

Re: Strange CTR Drop

Google Employee
# 6
Google Employee

Hi umbertone Smiley Happy

 

I'm just curious what the campaign settings are like. Is the campaign only opted into Search and Search Partners or is it also on the Display Network?

 

It may also be the case that certain ad positions just perform better for you than others. Perhaps you could run a report to analyse Avg positions and CTR for each of the ad groups over adate range of the last few months. 

 

Also, it might be useful 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. For info on how to run a keywords diagnoisis, please see the following Help Centre article

 

Ailsinn

 

Re: Strange CTR Drop

Participant ✭ ✭ ✭
# 7
Participant ✭ ✭ ✭

If competition has increased that doesn´t have to effect your CPC or position but can effect CTR anyway because there are more click-options for users. The same applies if something has changed in the serp (organic results).

 

I´d also segment campaigns (and/or ad groups, keywords) by "Top vs Other" too see if anything has happened in that respect. Positions on Google are relative which means that if no other ad shows in the top slot, your ad position will be 1 if your ad shows at the top in the right column slot.

 

Another explanation could be "impression fatigue". If you are in a niche, low volume market, it could be that the same people searches for your products/services multiple times, and they get less inclined to click your ad after have done it before.

 

Re: Strange CTR Drop

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 8
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Dear Aislinn,
Thanks for reply. It's Search and Search Partners as well, no Display Network as it runs as separate campaign.
I can analyse avg position vs ctr for a few months but with the analysis done for last month (https://www.box.com/s/050897b7cbb8be056154) I don't quite see direct relationship. What do you think?
Regarding the keywords, I'll check through those, thanks for suggestion

Re: Strange CTR Drop

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 9
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
David,
Thanks for commenting.
I don't really think that the competition significantly changed as there are pretty much all the same 3 click-options above organic results and it's been like that quite all the same. Anyways, this can be a suggestion even though it's unlikely to happen with different categories at the same time.

Following your advice I used segmenting for adgroups and results are quite the same. Average CTR on top for my leading adgroup was 19% last month and now it's only about 11%. That's terrible.

As for "impression fatigue" I think it's the leading hypothesis right now. Is there any tool to investigate it further?

Re: Strange CTR Drop

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 10
Top Contributor

Just an idea....

Google recently launched a new feature to include close variants of Exact and Phrase match keywords. http://adwords.blogspot.com/2012/04/new-matching-behavior-for-phrase-and.html This allows for your exact and phrase match to expand to similar terms but in some cases may not lead to good results.

First start with going to the SETTINGS tab and the Advanced Section > Exact and Phrase Match section. See if you are set to:

Include plurals, misspellings, and other close variants

or

Do not include close variants

If you are set to include close variants then it is time to see if Google is doing a good job on your behalf. Run a search query report and see if you can identify any "close variant" search query traffic and see if it is relevant or not.

You may need to get more aggressive with your negative keywords or consider opting out of the close variant feature.



Kim Clink, AdWords Top Contributor | Community Profile | Twitter | Clink Digital Marketing
Did you find any helpful responses or answers to your query? If yes, please mark it as the 'Best Answer.'