Local PPC is here to stay, but many advertisers still believe it is not important for them. It is widely thought that only location-bound businesses, like brick-and-mortar stores or food deliveries, should focus on local PPC. However, even for businesses operating completely online, tailoring their campaigns to a specific location can help optimize their advertising spends, as is proven by our new study.

To find out if and how advertising costs differ in the United States, Semrush analyzed over 86,000 keywords from 17 industries, including both offline and online businesses ? from automobile dealerships to cryptocurrencies.

The first version of this study was published in February 2018. After we got a lot of positive feedback and requests to share more details, we decided to turn this data into an interactive tool. This is how CPC Map appeared. Our newest Semrush tool is a map displaying average cost per click in a particular region for a particular vertical. What you will read now in this article is only a small part of the data the new tool provides:

Be sure to check it out for tons of actionable insights for your PPC strategy!

Breakdown by Industry

When analyzing different verticals in different states, we noticed that not all niches are equally location sensitive. In some industries the CPC range is quite small, while in other niches the average CPC differs significantly. According to this specificity, we divided all the categories into two groups.

More Location-Sensitive Industries

The first group contains industries where the CPC depends heavily on location.

We found out that the CPC range in the Insurance category is the largest one ? from $19.14 in Texas to $5.51 in Alaska. What?s more, Insurance is one of the most expensive niches for PPC; in more than half of U.S. states the average CPC is higher than $10. And the ?cheapest? click in this industry costs even more than the most expensive average click in a range of niches, such as Internet & Telecom ($3.89, California), Real Estate ($2.38, Texas), Travel ($1.67, New York), Cryptocurrency ($1.43, New Jersey), Fashion Retail ($1.08, California), and others.

Other categories where the average CPC differs significantly by state are Online Education, Legal, Marketing & Advertising, Online Banking, and Internet & Telecom

How You Can Apply this Data to Your Campaign

Leveraging local strategies is a great way for marketers to succeed with their PPC campaigns, as it helps to increase the performance of every single ad and optimize spends throughout an entire campaign. However, there is no universal recipe: you should explore how advertising spends differ in your industry and plan your activities based on this data.

The new and more precise local keyword metrics in Semrush?s CPC Map tool?will help you reveal new opportunities for your PPC activities and shift your focus to potentially lucrative regions in order to increase the return on ad spend.


To conduct this study, we picked 86,000 random keywords from 17 industries (both high-volume and low-volume keywords were included, as well as short-head and long-tail keywords). Search queries mentioning cities were removed (for instance, ?PR consultant? was included and ?PR consultant Boston? was excluded). The data in this article, for the 17?groups representing industries, was found by calculating the mean CPC in each of the states.