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Facebook Users Click Ads Twice As Often As Twitter, Google+ Users [Report]

Chitika analyzes CTR among social network users

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Update: As the study has generated some confusion, I’m going to repost the author’s explanation (which also appears in the comments) here:

This study, which measures the CTR of different social network users, was conducted using a referrer based methodology.

When we discuss referrer, we mean it in this way:

Let’s say, for example, harold.com is a publisher on the Chitika network (aka a person who runs Chitika ads). If, for example, someone on Google+ posts a link that leads to a particular page on harold.com, the person clicking this link would be said to be referred to harold.com by plus.google.com.

What we are measuring is the CTR on harold.com from plus.google.com referrals, not plus.google.com itself. To simplify, we are measuring the CTR of generated traffic, not of the website.

Obviously this is a small sample, so the study in question measured the CTR of all publisher sites included within our study when the referrer was Google+, Facebook, and Twitter. This is similar to the methodology Chitika used in our first major research study, measuring the CTR of traffic generated from Google, Yahoo, and Bing (link: http://insights.chitika.com/2009/clickthrough-rate-analysis-bing-vs-google-vs-yahoo/ ).

To summarize, the CTR in question is calculated as (# of clicks generated from impression set) / (# of impressions received on a publisher webpage from a link posted on Google+/Facebook/Twitter). Hope this helps.

Original Article: Chitika Insights has a new report indicating that Facebook users click on ads more than twice as often as Google+ users or Twitter users.

“Given the announcements and roll out of new social media advertising programs on platforms including; Google+, Facebook and Twitter, we wanted to investigate where advertisers will have the highest potential to engage with users based on CTR (Click Through Rate),” a representative for Chitika tells WebProNews. “To quantify this study, we analyzed a sample of data from the extensive Chitika ad network, covering hundreds of millions of impressions, to compile a data set which yielded the CTR (Click Through Rate, or likelihood of a user clicking on an ad) of the average user on the three social networks.”

The firm isolated the referrer domain for Google+, Twitter and Facebook, to compile a data set which yielded clickthrough rate of the average user on each social network.

Google+ and Twitter users click on ads with about the same frequency, according to Chitika’s findings.

Chitika on CTR

Facebook measured a .24% CTR, while Google+ and Twitter users ranked at .1 and .09% respectively.

“As always, a cost-benefit analysis is key to identifying which platform (if any) is worthwhile for your product or service,” Chitika says. “One of the biggest factors in deciding which form of social network advertising is the best choice is highly dependent on the type of campaign being run. For instance, in marketing a time sensitive campaign, utilizing an analytical approach with Twitter’s promoted trends could be more effective than pursuing standard Facebook ads. Moreover, it is possible as a marketer to optimize for all segments of traffic, and when making the final decision on an ad campaign, it is essential to keep your target market in mind.”

Of course, simply using Google+ to promote your products or services, may have new benefits to search visibility.

Facebook Users Click Ads Twice As Often As Twitter, Google+ Users [Report]
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  • https://twitter.com/kway4204 Kway4204

    You do know that there are no ads on Google+ right?

    • http://www.webpronews.com/ Chris Crum

      That is correct. It’s based on ads in Chitika’s network.

  • Gabriel Vasile

    Dude, there are NO ads on Google+! What the hell did you analyse?

  • http://deems.co.za Deems

    Your graph is incorrect. The Google+ bar should be at 0%.

    Why you ask? Well its not possible to have Google+ as referrer when there are no ads on the site.

    Oh, and there goes your credibility as a reliable research company.

    • http://www.webpronews.com/ Chris Crum

      Chitika says: “Actually, the clicks in this study refer to internet users clicking online ads within the Chitika network, whom have plus.google.com as their referral domain.”

      Also see quote from the article “To quantify this study, we analyzed a sample of data from the extensive Chitika ad network, covering hundreds of millions of impressions, to compile a data set which yielded the CTR (Click Through Rate, or likelihood of a user clicking on an ad) of the average user on the three social networks.”

      • http://deems.co.za Deems

        Does anyone here at Web(Pro?)News or Chitika understand how http referral addresses work?

        It certainly doesn’t appear so from the comment and quote above.

        • http://www.webpronews.com/ Chris Crum

          I was a bit thrown off by the data initially as Google+ has no ads, which is why I inquired about it to get the response I shared above. As mention of +1′s on AdWords ads were made in the report, I asked if that was what they were looking at, which is when I received that response. I took this to be referring to content with Chitika ads being shared on Google+.

        • http://insights.chitika.com Gabe Donnini

          Hi Deems, Gabe Donnini here, author of the study in question.

          This study, which measures the CTR of different social network users, was conducted using a referrer based methodology.
          When we discuss referrer, we mean it in this way:

          Let’s say, for example, harold.com is a publisher on the Chitika network (aka a person who runs Chitika ads). If, for example, someone on Google+ posts a link that leads to a particular page on harold.com, the person clicking this link would be said to be referred to harold.com by plus.google.com.

          What we are measuring is the CTR on harold.com from plus.google.com referrals, not plus.google.com itself. To simplify, we are measuring the CTR of generated traffic, not of the website.

          Obviously this is a small sample, so the study in question measured the CTR of all publisher sites included within our study when the referrer was Google+, Facebook, and Twitter. This is similar to the methodology Chitika used in our first major research study, measuring the CTR of traffic generated from Google, Yahoo, and Bing (link: http://insights.chitika.com/2009/clickthrough-rate-analysis-bing-vs-google-vs-yahoo/ ).

          To summarize, the CTR in question is calculated as (# of clicks generated from impression set) / (# of impressions received on a publisher webpage from a link posted on Google+/Facebook/Twitter). Hope this helps.

          • http://www.webpronews.com/ Chris Crum

            Thanks for weighing in Gabe.

  • Rob

    Is that comparing apples to apples then? If I read the article and responses correctly, they’re talking about using hashtagged items as “click thru ads” which really I would consider viral marketing, vs the ads placed on Facebook? Or are they comparing the click through rate of posted items in Facebook?

    I suppose their method of counting is “proprietary” and they can’t divulge it, but it seems disingenuous to say there are click through rates on “ads” in Google+ and Twitter… they don’t exist.

    • Joe Regan

      Hi, Rob

      I made this explanation on Mr. Elgan’s post directly on Google+, but you’re entitled to reading it as well.

      The basis of this study was to investigate the likelihood of different social network users clicking ads on outside domains when referred in.

      We released this information as a way to provide free analysis to relevant publisher sites, on account of an increased level of traffic seen coming out of the major social networks in recent years.

      In regard to your question on methodology, what we effectively do is use a pooled group of web domains, where our advertisements are present, and conduct analysis on the aggregate. In other words, if harold.com, dave.com, etc, are all websites that run Chitika ads (which cover billions of ad impressions per month across a wide variety of sites), then we measure the stats of google+, facebook, and twitter referrals to these domains and report the corresponding click and ad impression results. Therefore, we actually are making an apples to apples comparison, as the sample being used is standardized across all referrers.

      • http://www.webpronews.com/ Chris Crum

        Thanks for the further explanation Joe.

  • bxws

    total bs!

  • Tom

    Last I checked, there *weren’t* advertisements on Plus. How is it remotely possible for FaceBook users to click on advertisements twice as much as they do on Plus? Mathematically speaking, the study’s saying “2 x 0 = 2″ (which, seems flawed).

    Even given their “explanation”, it seems flawed. I mean, as a Plus user, I don’t see many people sharing links to advertising (and, the people that do tend to do it habitually and get blocked). Overall, both this article and the “explanation” offered *really* gives the impression of being a completely made up number.

  • http://www.raytemplates.com Blogger Templates

    Having a high CTR in itself may not be good. You will need to see how much of the traffic actually converts.