Really - Only 1% Of Search Advertisers Drive 82% Of Clicks

If you believe the results of a recent study examining Google AdWords clicks, it may seem that most marketers still don't know how to run a successful paid-search campaign. While many think they do, only the top 1% of search advertisers in the categories of Retail, Hotels & Resorts, and Computer Hardware drive an average of 82% of search clicks in each category across the United States, the United Kingdom and France.

The study -- conducted in January by AdGooroo, a Kantar Media company -- examined search advertising activity in 10 business categories on Google AdWords in the U.S., the U.K., and France. With an average of 1% of brand marketers truly successful in search engine marketing, what will it take to distribute the clicks a little more evenly?

"The only way to move the needle on this 1% is for the other 99% of advertisers to raise their game and get better at search," said AdGooroo CEO Rich Stokes. "This figure reflects the dominance of the top 1% of advertisers. Google runs a competitive marketplace with its ads, but that top 1% has become so effective they command 80% of the clicks by executing effective bid management, leveraging expansive keyword portfolios, providing a solid consumer experience, and more."

Success gets spread a little thinner in the Consumer Packaged Goods category, where the top 1% of search advertisers across the U.S., the U.K., and France were responsible for an average of 71% of total paid-search clicks.

The analyses also looked at two telecommunications categories, Cable & Internet, and Wireless & Phone, where 1% of advertisers controlled an average of 91% and 88% of estimated paid-search clicks, respectively, across the U.S., the U.K., and France.

While the 1% differs by category and country, AdGooroo lists the most successful paid-search brands as Amazon.com, No. 1 in the U.S. and No. 3 in the U.K.; MoneySupermarket.com, No. 1 in the U.K.; Orange.fr, No 1. in France; Booking.com, No. 2 in the U.K. and France; and ATT.com, No. 2 in the U.S.

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1 comment about "Really - Only 1% Of Search Advertisers Drive 82% Of Clicks".
  1. Michael Odza from Odza Consults/Social Media Lift , March 17, 2014 at 11:16 a.m.
    I'm going to guess that more than one factor is at play in this extreme concentration: 1. Virtuous circle effect: the rich get richer. In other words, Google moves the most successful ads to the top (or keeps them there), which gives them the best results; 2. Better tools: a workman is only as good as his tools. If you're already big, you can afford the most effective automated tools -- which cost a lot.