What Is CPC? Cost Per Click Explained

Digital advertising is a broad time period that refers back to the varied methods companies can promote themselves on-line. One of the commonest and efficient digital marketing strategies is pay-per-click (PPC) promoting.

PPC is a sort of promoting the place companies pay a payment each time their advert is clicked. This price is calculated by a metric known as cost-per-click (CPC). In different phrases, CPC is the worth companies pay for every click on on their advert.

So, what’s CPC in marketing, how does it work, and the way is it completely different from CPM and CPA?

What Is CPC?

Cost per click on (CPC) is a digital promoting pricing mannequin through which companies pay a payment for every click on on their advert.

The CPC mannequin is often utilized in search engine promoting, show promoting, and social media promoting, the place companies solely pay when their advert is clicked.

For instance, let’s say a enterprise runs a web site that sells footwear. It decides to make use of Google Ads to advertise its web site and bid on the key phrase “canvas footwear.

When somebody searches for “canvas footwear” on Google, its advert might seem on the outcomes web page. The advert might get hundreds of impressions, however solely when the searcher clicks on the advert, the enterprise must pay the CPC for that key phrase.

CPC Formula

Calculating price per click on is easy. One simply must divide the entire price of their marketing campaign by the variety of clicks it acquired.

For instance, if a enterprise spent $100 on its Google Ads marketing campaign and acquired 1,000 clicks, its CPC can be $0.10.

CPC = Total Cost of Campaign / Number of Clicks

How Does CPC Work?

In a traditional situation, a number of advertisers bid on the identical key phrase. The CPC for a specific key phrase is decided by the advertiser who’s keen to pay the very best quantity per click on.

The CPC additionally depends upon the standard rating of an advert. Different advert platforms have completely different high quality rating standards, however the larger the standard rating, the decrease the CPC shall be.

From a marketing campaign perspective, the advertiser is charged each time somebody clicks on their advert. This advertiser both fixes the associated fee per click on charge or permits the platform to mechanically modify it so as to get extra clicks (inside its finances).

The variety of impressions an advert will get doesn’t have an effect on the associated fee per click on because it does in a CPM marketing campaign. An advert can get numerous impressions however the advertiser will solely be charged when somebody clicks on it.

There are some associated phrases {that a} consumer might come throughout whereas launching a PPC marketing campaign. These are:

  • Maximum price per click on: The highest quantity an advertiser is keen to pay for a specific key phrase. This doesn’t imply that the advertiser shall be charged this quantity each time their advert is clicked. It simply serves as a restrict for the CPC.
  • Manual price per click on bidding: In any such bidding, the advertiser units a most CPC for every key phrase. This signifies that they’ll by no means be charged greater than their most CPC.
  • Automatic price per click on bidding: Also known as enhanced price per click on bidding, right here the advert platform makes use of superior algorithms to optimise the advertiser’s marketing campaign for higher outcomes mechanically.
  • Click-through charge (CTR): The variety of occasions an advert is clicked divided by the variety of occasions it’s proven (impressions). CTR helps advertisers monitor the effectiveness of their advert campaigns.


Often, CPC is confused with two different digital promoting pricing fashions – cost per thousand impressions (CPM) and value per motion (CPA).

In a CPM marketing campaign, companies are charged a payment for each 1,000 occasions their advert is proven, no matter whether or not it’s clicked or not.

A CPA marketing campaign, however, expenses companies solely when the specified motion is taken by the consumer, equivalent to making a purchase order or signing up for a e-newsletter. It’s a subset of performance marketing.

CPC is completely different from each CPM and CPA in that companies are solely charged when their advert is clicked.

For instance, if a enterprise runs a CPC marketing campaign on Google Ads and its advert is proven 1,000 occasions however solely receives 10 clicks and one sale, the enterprise will solely be charged for these 10 clicks.

Advantages Of CPC

There are a number of benefits of utilizing a CPC pricing mannequin for digital promoting, together with:

  • Fairness: companies are solely charged when their advert is clicked, so that they don’t have to fret about paying for impressions or different actions that won’t result in conversions.
  • Transparency: companies know precisely how a lot they are going to be charged for every click on on their advert, so there aren’t any hidden charges.
  • Flexibility: companies can set their very own CPC charge or permit the platform to mechanically modify it based mostly on their finances and different elements.
  • Manageability: companies can simply management their spending by setting a day by day or complete finances for his or her CPC marketing campaign.

Disadvantages Of CPC

There are additionally some disadvantages of utilizing a CPC pricing mannequin, together with:

  • High competitors: companies might must pay a excessive CPC charge for fashionable key phrases which can be being bid on by many different advertisers.
  • Low-quality rating: companies might must pay a excessive CPC charge if their advert has a low-quality rating.
  • Click fraud: companies could also be charged for fake clicks on their advertisements, which might be troublesome to detect and forestall.

Factors Affecting CPC

CPC might be affected by a lot of elements, together with:

  • Popularity of the key phrase: extra fashionable key phrases tends to have larger CPCs.
  • Quality rating of the advert: advertisements with a better high quality rating are inclined to have decrease CPCs.
  • Type of system: advertisements on cell gadgets are inclined to have decrease CPCs than advertisements on desktop gadgets.
  • Type of advert: textual content advertisements are inclined to have decrease CPCs than picture or video advertisements.
  • Location of the consumer: customers in developed international locations are inclined to have larger CPCs than customers in growing international locations.

Besides these elements, the CPC for a specific key phrase may also be affected by the general finances of the marketing campaign and the utmost CPC bids set by the companies.


CPC is among the many hottest internet advertising pricing fashions because it permits companies to manage their spending and solely pay when their advert is clicked.

Brands use PPC campaigns largely for the center of the funnel and backside of the funnel advertising objectives like lead era and product gross sales. However, these campaigns don’t swimsuit prime of the funnel advertising objectives like brand awareness.

Digital advertisers ought to take into account the varied elements that may have an effect on CPC when planning their campaigns. By understanding how CPC works, companies can higher management their advert spending and obtain their desired outcomes.

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Did we miss one thing? Come on! Tell us what you concentrate on our article on price per click on (CPC) within the feedback part.


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