The cost per click (CPC) of search engine keywords provides insight into current events. Anyone who doubts the trend simply needs to follow the dollar.
All of the Top 10 most expensive keywords during the first six months in 2015, were related to medical issues, lawsuits or insurance settlements. There were two keywords pertaining to selling structured settlements, without mention of mesothelioma. The selling structured settlements keywords could apply to any kind of lawsuit, not just those related to mesothelioma, the cancerous tumor at the center of numerous advertising campaigns focused on asbestos-related lawsuits, according to Jim Leichenko, director of marketing at AdGooroo, a Kantar Media company.
The research conducted from January to June 2015 by AdGooroo, released Thursday to Search Marketing Daily, shows the most expensive costs per click were the long-tail keywords referring to mesothelioma attorneys in specific states, plus general structured settlement keywords.
Other terms found on both lists also dropped, such as "alabama mesothelioma attorney," and "hawaii mesothelioma lawyer," but at least one has increased in average CPC. "Insurance structured settlement" went from $222.04 in 2014 to $232.33 in the first half of 2015.
AdGooroo saw a similar story for the Top 20 keywords in 2014. The top term still "mesothelioma attorneys tx," but the average CPC dropped to $272 during the first half of 2015 from $319.34 in 2014.
Thirteen of the Top 20 most expensive keywords in 2014 were related to mesothelioma. The price to sponsor these keywords on search engines skyrocketed last year. The most expensive term for 2014,"mesothelioma attorneys tx," had an average cost per click of $319.34. The cost for the other 12 mesothelioma-related keywords in the Top 20 averaged $216.17 per click. That's a far cry from AdGooroo's October 2009 analysis when it found the keyword "mesothelioma" was the most expensive in paid search, costing an average of $99.44 per click.
The other seven keywords ranking among the Top 20 most expensive terms in 2014 were related to the business of purchasing structured settlements from lawsuit plaintiffs. Structured settlements are a type of legal settlement where the plaintiff is paid an annuity rather than a lump sum, according to Leichenko.
The advertisers sponsoring these keywords are financial service companies who offer the plaintiff cash up front for the annuity. The top term among these "buying structured settlement annuities" keywords ranked No. 2 with a $312.49 average CPC.