Google is Charging More for Tablets


The other day I was looking over one the PPC accounts decided to look at campaigns by device.  I typically do not look at things this way as the device for this particular account does not matter as much as other things. Now, with that said I still find it to be of value, but as a secondary metric.

When looking at the device type by traffic and spend I was somewhat surprised with the results. The avg. CPC by device type was not what I was expecting at all.

So it is broken down by 3 device types

  • Computers
  • Mobile Phones
  • Tablets

For this account a greater majority of traffic and spend is targeting computers. Mobile does not generate a lot for us, but it is in the thousands of clicks on a monthly basis.

Tablets are not a big traffic source, but for some reason I became fixated on the stats. I kind of look at tablets from a PPC point of view as an emerging device type that has stay power that I suspect will surpass mobile devices. Tablets a simple lightweight, easy to use, and more portable than a laptop or computer, but at the same time offers more functionality and usability than a phone which makes it a leading candidate for the eventual replacement of everyday computing.

Back to the PPC stuff…

What I found is that in every non-mobile specific campaign in this account, tablets avg. CPC was 5%-10% more than computer avg. CPC. Lets fast forward a few years and assume that the AdWords Algorithm stays the same, tablets will have a much larger market share than it does today and there will continue to be an erosion from the computer and laptop market share, vendors using AdWords might eventually end up paying 5%-10% more than they do now.

Perhaps it’s just me, but I do not think its fair to companies that invest in a service that has progressively become more expensive to use since the recession started to take emerging devices that will one day surpass the current device leader and charge more per click. The way that it is being done today is in such a deeply buried way that most of the people looking and working in Adwords accounts will not even know the difference. And if nobody is saying anything about this, that means that Google will move forward with a new CPC avg. that will eventually make them 5%-10% more money with a simple price hike that nobody can see.

I am all for making money and do not necessarily blame Google for doing this, but there needs to be a great equalizer in the search world that gives vendors and users of Google Adwords some kind of leverage to things like this because without any kind of protection, Google basically dictates exactly how much money and how successful companies can be and that is too much power and control for one entity.

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