30th June 2020

Organic CTR by position – breaking down the headline stats

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You’ve seen the charts that show the cliff-edge drop off in organic CTR as you drop down the organic search results. The top position gets something like 30% of all clicks, and by the bottom of page 1, it’s less 2%.

Now if I’m honest, I’ve always questioned these stats… they’re just too neat and all-encompassing. People work really hard to increase organic CTR across the rankings (I’ve written about doing just that) and I know from my own browsing behaviour that depending on the search term, my intention or the subject I’m researching I can behave very differently. So what can we do to get more accurate stats?

Fortunately, I’ve recently been made aware of Advanced Web Ranking’s CTR study, which uses data from Google Search Console to model organic CTR at various positions, and can be broken down by brand vs non-brand, search intent, category and more, providing really granular insights into the true CTR across organic search results.

Full list of filters

  • Month
  • Country
  • SERP Features
  • Brand vs Non-Brand
  • Search Intent
  • Long Tail
  • Categories
  • Trends

It throws up some interesting anomalies. In the UK, positions 3 and 4 have roughly the same CTR for searches about real estate; for legal queries position 1 gets over 60% of the clicks; being on page 2 for careers related searches is better than being at the bottom of page 1!

It may not surprise you to learn that the shorter the keyphrase the more important first position is, but by the time you’ve hit 4-word phrases you’re more likely to look further down the page. Of course, that may all change as voice search becomes more popular!

Interesting stuff when looking at your search presence and making decisions about where to put your optimisation efforts.

We’d love to hear how you’re using this data, do let us know! Of course, if you’re keen to find out how we can help you get more from your organic search traffic, drop us a line.