Title graphic for GrowTraffic blog about understanding organic click through rates

Yes. If you want your website to rank well on search engines, such as Google and Bing, it is important to understand the many elements of search engine optimisation. This includes organic click through rate.

If your website is ranking high for a specific keyword but isn’t getting many clicks – there is still work to be done. Clicks lead to well…leads. And leads turn into conversions (hopefully). So, in this blog, we’re going to outline everything you need to know about organic click through rates.

What Is The Organic Click Through Rate (CTR)?

The organic click through rate is the percentage of web users who click through to your website from the total number of web users who saw your website on the search engine results page.

For example, if you are ranking on page 2 of Google (impressive), yet you have a very low click through rate, this would indicate that although many people are seeing your website, very few are clicking through to it. Instead, they’re scrolling past it and choosing someone else on the SERP’s.

There are several reasons why a web user may not click on your website including problems with your heading, meta tag description or URL…but we’ll get to that later.

Is It Important For SEO?

Yes. There’s a big correlation between organic CTR and how high a website ranks in search engines. Bing have openly said they use CTR as a ranking factor. Whereas, Google has stayed quiet on the subject (for the most part).

However, it has been established by many SEO experts that Google uses organic click through rate to re-rank websites on the search engine results page (SERPs). Each position in the rankings has an expected CTR – if your web page is exceeding this rate, it will likely climb the SERPs and appear in a higher position.

By measuring your organic click through rate, you will be able to improve click rates and grow organic traffic to your website. You will be able to see which of your web pages and posts are performing well and you’ll gain a better understanding of your target audience and their interests.

Limitations Of The Organic Click Through Rate

Although understanding your organic click through rate is advantageous, it certainly won’t fix all your problems. There are a couple of limitations.

For example, the CTR can tell you how many search users are clicking through to your website, but it cannot tell you whether they are your target audience. Quantity doesn’t always mean quality. And although your organic CTR may be high, this doesn’t necessarily mean your conversion rate will be high.

Someone may click through to your website but not take any action or may leave the site quickly. This is why it is important to keep a close eye on the bounce rate as well as the organic click through rate.

How Do I Measure My Organic Click Through Rate?

Before you can improve your organic click through rate, you first need to measure it. One of the simpler ways to measure your organic click through rate is to:

  • Head to the ‘Search Analytics’ section of Google Search Console and download the data for the keywords your site ranks for, as well as the clicks they’ve generated, impressions, and ranking position.
  • In an excel spreadsheet, group the keywords by rank. Remove data for branded keywords as these have a higher CTR than normal keywords. Then to calculate a ranks average CTR, add all the clicks for each position and divide by the total number of impressions. So, you are dividing the sum total of the clicks by the sum total of impressions at each rank level.
  • Using the data, you can then create a CTR curve by plotting the position value on the X-axis and the CTRs on the Y-axis.

Once you have measured your organic click through rate, you can think about how to improve it.

How Do I Improve My Organic Click Through Rate?

Improving your organic click through rate takes time, effort and knowledge. You should be aware that Google’s ever changing algorithms and updates make it challenging to give absolute “best practices” for improving your websites organic CTR. However, what we can do is share some of the best-known (and easy to learn) tactics for improving your organic click through rate:

  • Download An SEO Plug-In – Yoast is a simple, easy to use plug in that will provide tips and support for correctly optimising your website as you go. A well optimised web page has a far better chance of ranking than a website that hasn’t been optimised for search.
  • Optimise Your Page Title – it is the first thing web users see on the SERP. And if it isn’t amazing, it’ll end up being the only thing the see. It should be easy to read, concise and inclusive of your keyword. It should also SELL the page.
  • Optimise The Meta Description – We’ve shared our tips for writing a great meta description that will boost SEO in this blog.
  • Place The Keyword Strategically – As well as the page title and meta description, your keyword should be in some of the H2 tags, in the first paragraph of text, in the URL and in the image alt tags.
  • Utilise Longtail Keywords – Your keyword research should always include a mixture of short keywords and longtail keywords and phrases. Longtail keywords can help your rank for specific search queries and statistics show that generally, the more long tail organic queries you rank for, the higher your CTR will be.

Get In Touch

We hope you understand organic click through rate a little better now.

If you’re struggling to understand SEO, there’s a chance this whole blog post has gone right over your head. Don’t worry – it happens! If you have questions about organic click through rate, or you need help getting people to your website, get in touch with us!

GrowTraffic is an award-winning digital marketing agency based in Lancashire and Yorkshire. We specialise in SEO but offer a wide range of services, including content marketing, PPC, social media marketing and more.

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