3 Reports Offer Insights on State of Paid Search in Q2

We just recently saw Q2 come to a close, and a flurry of findings of Q2 activity in the paid search arena have been published. Three reports hit our inboxes yesterday, one from Adobe’s Digital Marketing, one from Kenshoo and one from The Search Agency – all highlighting paid search spend, click-through rates, cost per click and more by engine and device in Q2. Here’s a snapshot of some of those findings. 


Spend is up across the board, according to the three studies.

United States

The Search Agency reported a 22 percent increase year-over-year (YoY) in paid search spend. Here's a snapshot of not only spend, but also clicks, click-through rate, and cost per click YoY:


The Americas

For North America and South America combined, Kenshoo reported a total of 25 percent spend increase YoY.

Here, Kenshoo shows spend relative to revenue YoY:


U.S. + U.K. and Germany

Adobe’s data showed the three countries with a collective 25 percent growth in spend YoY.


Clicks and Click-Through Rate (CTR) by Engine

When it came to clicks and CTR in Q2, results were mixed.

United States

The Search Agency showed clicks were up on both Google and Bing in Q2, 38 percent and 20 percent, respectively. An increased CTR plus the increase in advertising spend, said The Search Agency, “is indicative of a strengthened economy."


U.S. + U.K. and Germany

Adobe reported CTR on Bing-Yahoo was down, while Google’s CTR rose 20 percent in Q2 2014, and said it was likely due to “Google changing its text ad formats for search queries (denoted by a subtle yellow 'Ad' icon opposed to being explicitly highlighted as ad or sponsored result).”

The Americas

Kenshoo data showed CTR was up 2.3 percent in Q2 in the Americas. 

Cost per Click (CPC)

CPC data varied by study in the Q2 roundup.

United States

Google’s CPC decreased by 16 percent, while Bing CPC increased 27 percent in Q2, The Search Agency reported.

U.S. + U.K. and Germany

Adobe’s stats show CPC growing in Q2 for all but Yahoo-Bing in the U.S. Overall, said Adobe, Google CPC increased 4 percent YoY.


The Americas

Kenshoo data showed the average CPC in Q2 for the Americas at $0.63.


For more detailed info, see the individual reports linked to in the intro of this story.

About the author

Jessica Lee is the founder of bizbuzzcontent, a boutique content services company that offers quality content creation services and content strategy consulting.

Since 2005, Jessica has been in the business of content and communications, with the past seven years focused on the Web marketing space.

Prior to launching bizbuzzcontent, Jessica was responsible for content strategy, development, and marketing for Bruce Clay Inc. - a global SEO firm, where she served small businesses and Fortune 500 clients.

Jessica has a bachelor's in communications and public relations from San Diego State University.

She contributed to the book Search Engine Optimization All-in-One for Dummies second edition, and her writing is featured in an active college textbook, Reading and Writing About Contemporary Issues.