Should You Care About High CPC Keywords?

May 13, 2019
May 13, 2019 Madeleine

Cost per click – an effective marketing strategy, or an effective way to drain your company’s financial resources? It may seem harsh, but the answer is both. While high CPC keywords could be beneficial to your company, are they really the best way to go about your digital marketing strategy? Let’s take a look at what high CPC keywords are, and whether or not you should care about them.

What Are CPC keywords?

Click per cost (CPC) keywords are pretty much exactly what they sound like. By providing relevant keywords that relate to your product or business to a service such as Google AdWords, you are allowing them to place your ads on search engines or other related websites. This is a form of advertising that technically will only cost you if someone clicks on your ad.

It sounds like a sure-fire way to both make money and save money, right? After all, if a potential customer clicks on your ad, it must mean that they’re interested in your product, and the chances of you making money off of this click become significantly higher (well, higher than if they hadn’t clicked at all).

Now, a high CPC keyword contains a significantly higher rate than your average CPC keyword. Clicks on an average CPC keyword across all industries in 2018 cost the company, on average, $2.69. Now, let’s take a look at the highest CPC keywords in 2018. In Canada, the most expensive keywords in Google AdWords were “point of sale device” at $25.08 per click, “insurance” at $23.50 per click, and “super visa insurance” at $21.17 per click, on average.

Why Are These Keywords so Expensive?

The reason Google AdWords makes them so expensive, is actually for one reason – they can. The companies that are backing these keywords have what they call a “high customer value.” This means that they can afford to spend more to gain potential new customers, and therefore, these keywords become more valuable.

Will Spending Money on High CPC Keywords Benefit Me?

The answer to this question is definitely circumstantial – and by circumstantial, I mean, how much money your company can afford to spend. Say a potential customer clicks on your ad because you have a high CPC keyword, and by doing so, they show some potential interest in your business. The chances of them following through and purchasing from your business are still relatively low.

You may have to purchase hundreds of clicks before you receive your first sale. Will your profit from that sale be enough for the thousands of dollars you’ve spent on CPC keyword advertising to be worth it? If not, does your company make enough money to have a separate budget for marketing and advertising, without receiving an adequate ROI? Here are some other reasons why high CPC keywords might not benefit you:

It may not exactly fit your niche. Say you’ve decided to go ahead and spend a few thousand dollars on high CPC keyword advertising. You realize that you may not receive the ROI that you were hoping for, but at least it will get the word out about your business to customers who are looking for exactly what you’re offering – or will it?

CPC keyword advertising

You may be investing in keywords that are related to what your company has to offer, but are not exactly what those who click on the ad are looking for. Investing in high CPC keywords just because they have a higher chance of being clicked is not a good idea if the product or service you’re offering is not exactly that. Even if you were prepared to spend a few thousand dollars potentially, you could very well end up wasting it altogether.

You are competing with big companies. Again, the reason why high CPC keywords are, well, high in price, is because they are mostly backed by big companies who can afford to pay the hefty pay per click rate. Not to discourage you, but it’s obvious that large, well-established companies are going to be hard to compete with.

If you feel that your company is well established and has a large enough budget, that’s one thing. If you are a company that is virtually just starting out, there are much better ways to spend your money in the digital marketing world, which will increase your traffic and gain potential customers without breaking the bank altogether.

You may not receive genuine clicks. Say you’ve invested your money in these high CPC keywords, and you do manage to get some clicks – well done! You may then realize that you are not getting any new customers as a result, and what is going on here? Well, you may very well be getting clicks that aren’t from genuine customers, or people looking to buy your product or service at all.

Many factors could have resulted in these fraudulent clicks including choosing the wrong keywords, accidental clicks, and also clicks that are coming from malicious software. Click fraud is a real issue that comes from a variety of sources. Believe it or not, click fraud often comes from competitors that are looking to waste your CPC budget – yes, this is actually something that occurs, and it can be a huge threat to your company’s bank account. Shockingly enough, it is not uncommon for a disgruntled customer to try to do the same.

When it comes down to it, high CPC keywords have their pros and cons. If you are a well-established business, and/or you have a large budget to invest in this particular type of advertising, they could be very beneficial for growing your business. However, if you are a small to medium-sized business that does not have a large budget for digital marketing, high CPC keywords are likely not going to be worth it for you.

As stated above, there are many successful ways to engage in this type of marketing without breaking the bank, or by investing in something that could be incredibly risky. When it comes to investing your money online, it is important to do as much research as possible, and think about your ROI – that’s all we ask.