Sorry for all the TLAs in the topic title…ha ha

I’ve had a similar experience to several others here who have commented on the deteriorating results with Google AdWords over the past few years. I started out back in the mid-2000s, and the ROI was so good I quickly started spending over $120,000/year on AdWords PPC, and it was almost too easy, bringing in sales and profits like crazy. Then in 2011 I had to start optimizing to keep up, and then in 2012 to present, sales and profits continuously dropped as AdWords ROI declined each year.

Which brings me to the topic of this post…I’m wondering if Capterra or another PPC or lead generation service may be able to rejuvenate those sales again. 5 years ago Capterra couldn’t compete with the Google ROI, and their traffic was too small to have an impact. I’m going to revisit them again, as I’m hoping the targeted traffic will help to make up for the smaller audience.

Has anyone here in the B2B space had any experience with Capterra to share? Particularly in comparison to AdWords ROI and overall reach?

I have previously found Capterra to be much better ROI than Google Adwords, but that was over a year ago and it is getting more competitive. Capterra did come up first in Google for my most common keywords.

Ok, after doing some testing, Capterra comes up with very targeted traffic, but for my case, it comes at a higher cost per download compared to AdWords.

Some details:

  • Cost/Click: Capterra loses to AdWords (Capterra costs about twice as much per click).
  • Pages/Session: Capterra beat AdWords by about 40% (more pages/session).
  • Bounce rate: Capterra beat AdWords by about 18% (fewer bounces)
  • Download rate: Capterra beat AdWords by about 50% (more downloads)
  • Cost/Download: Capterra loses to AdWords (Capterra costs about twice as much per download).

Based on the details above, the Capterra traffic seems to be very targeted, and/or the audience is very motivated, but the cost per download for Capterra is about 2X the cost per download for AdWords.

The big unanswered question is how about the cost/sale? Unfortunately, my sale tracking breaks down since the purchaser is usually not the same person who clicks the ad and downloads the software, so I don’t have this statistic. It’s quite possible that the Capterra traffic is coming from buyers with their wallet out ready to buy compared to the general Google search user…is a “Capterra downloader” twice as likely to buy compared to a “Google search downloader”? Alas, I may never know…

Incidentally, Google Organic blows them all away on all metrics listed above and is “free”…

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