Click-through rate stops declining – report

Gal Trifon, CEO and co-founder at MediaMind
Gal Trifon, CEO and co-founder at MediaMind

The global click-through rate (CTR) for online advertising stopped declining in 2009 and 2010 and has remained fixed at around 0.09pc, according to a new study from MediaMind Technologies.

The ‘Standard Banners – Non-Standard Results’ study shows that CTR has been decreasing over the past decade, with a large drop of 18pc during the financial crisis following the collapse of Lehman Brothers in September 2008.  Interestingly, the study reveals that one of the main reasons for the drop in CTR is the success of online display advertising: the increase in the number of online ad impressions outpaced users’ rise in clicks, which resulted in lower CTR.

It found that users who are exposed to relatively few ads are more likely to have a high CTR than users who are exposed to a high number of ads. 

“The new findings are an encouraging sign for advertisers,” said Gal Trifon, CEO and co-founder at MediaMind. “Although CTR is only a partial measure of online success, the levelling of CTR shows that online advertising has reached a level of maturity and that advertisers have become more sophisticated in luring users’ interest.”

The research also identified some solutions for advertisers to improve their campaign performance. Some of these steps include focusing on targeted content such as games, weather, technology and travel, instead of general environments like social networks. In addition, it says advertisers should also use larger standard banners to increase visibility.

The study also shows that creative optimisation algorithms boost CTR and conversions. Advertisers may also improve performance by retargeting users who are underexposed to campaigns.