Frequency Cap On PPC: Do Digital Ad Agencies Stand by It?

Digital ad agencies, SEO companies, SEO experts in Chennai, Google ads, Google advertising, Google display ads, responsive search ads

Have you run into a particularly persistent guy, intent on selling his product and ready to follow you around the supermarket floor -pure annoyance, isn’t it? Similar in terms, when an advert trails and stalks a user for far too long, it inadvertently loses its charm.

“69% of people surveyed by – Google survey global, said that they would rather install ad blockers.”

So basically, an ad frequency is the number of times a single ad appears in a relevant user’s online session. And, laying a frequency cap on these Google display ads is an ideal way to grow your business while keeping your potential customers’ tolerance in mind.

Why Google Ads?

We just cannot go talking about online advertising without acknowledging that Google is the grandmaster of this arena. And yes, that’s exactly why most SEO companies and digital ad agencies suggest this medium to all its clients. Google has been and continues to be the most successful medium of connection between the business and its customers.

“70% of desktop users and 90% of mobile users use Google as their go-to Search Engine.” – Net MarketShare

Google advertising is a large part of any marketing campaign that a company would want to use when jumping into the digital marketing wagon. Often it resorts to responsive search ads for a better user reach. However, several SEO experts in Chennai, when talking about pay per click (PPC) campaigns endorse frequency capping as an effective tool to improve your results in the new media. And remember, staying on the good side of Google users mean that you are always “in business”.

To restrict ad frequencies, Google offers controls that let you set the number of times an ad is displayed on each user’s screen, however, these kinds of caps only apply to video adverts and Google display ads, while levying a similar cap isn’t possible on the search ads, for now.

Factors Influenced by a Frequency Cap

Studies suggest that relevancy, frequency and consistency make for a successful ad campaign, be it on the digital front or any conventional methods. But where exactly do SEO companies draw the line between being too frequent and being too few?

Because not having enough consistency and frequency is once again an issue. So, according to a study conducted by the Advertising Research Foundation, “when the frequency of an ad being shown to a user exceeds 40 times in a month, the sales of the company seem to take a hit.”Breaking that down translates to roughly 1.3 times a day. Doesn’t seem like a lot, does it? But yes, the research states that beyond these numbers there’s a negative impact on sales.

Where do you see these impacts?

Brand Image: As it turns out bad online reputation messes with any interest a user might have on your product or service. Ain’t that true. So, frequency capping helps maintain that.

Click through Rate (CTR): A study by Adzerkreveals that one Google ad per week has a CTR of 0.16%, while10 per week has a significant drop in CTR to just 0.02%. That’s nearly a whopping 87% drop, emphasizing that lower frequencies ensure a better reach. Which brings us to the next point.

Budgeting: Having control of your CTR creates a domino effect. With frequency capping, an organization can regulate its investment better. The survey continues by stating that the cost per click(CPC) reduces by a good 30% with the use of a frequency cap, while only reducing 12% of your regular clickthroughs. Which may seem counter-intuitive, however, when all things considered the numbers add up.

How to Frequency Cap?

So, is simply reducing the no. of times an ad is displayed on a user’s screen going to magically turn your campaigns around? Well, there’s the catch.
As mentioned earlier a frequency cap sets a limit to the no. of impressions available for a campaign, ad group, or even an ad. They can be set based on per day, week, month, or any of those combinations. For a display campaign, only the viewable impressions count towards this limit however the ‘frequency report data’ includes the unviewable impressions as well.

For video ads though, the limit is set at campaign levels ensuring an individual ad’s impression is calculated across all video campaigns. This applies to both the in-stream and bumper ads.

Frequency vs Reach: Reach is the number of unique users who have seen your Google advertisement. That is, even if an individual user sees your ad more than ones, it still counts as one. As for as frequency is concerned, it’s the number of times a user has seen your ad within a given period (say, every 24 hours).

Understanding the difference is important when strategies your campaigns. It plays a pivotal role in a campaign’s success, as it influences ad fatigue. A cold audience is more likely to fatigue earlier than a hot one.

Larry KimatWordStream states that “…remarketing ads fatigued at half the rate of non-remarketing targeted ads”

In other words, when trying to create a brand awareness against a colder audience, you inevitably risk double the fatigue rate. You counter this, by increase the reach and lowering the frequency. As with rebranding campaigns, you can be much more liberal with the frequencies.

The article continues “…people stay interested in them (retargeted ads) for twice as long as regular Google display ads, and convert at higher and higher rates with each incremental ad view.”

So, managing the frequency cap is a little more than adjusting the numbers.

End to all means?

Frequency capping is but just one important factor influencing your marketing campaign’s success. There are many such, including target segment, the timing of your Google ads, market research, ad tactics, responsive search ads, and much more KPIs to consider. However, frequency capping methods continue to prove effective in drawing customers to a business in the long run.

But of course, you can spend most of your advertising budget on frequency research alone. That’swhereSEO experts in Chennai can assist you with their expert business knowledge, thus, breaking the presumption that more spent on Google advertising, the more possibility for a potential customer.


Yes, digital ad campaigns are a great way to move ahead for your next big business expansion. But not being mindful of the intricate factors involved could lead to an unfortunate blowback. And, every relevant user lost is a potential business opportunity botched.

So, with your next ad campaign don’t be the annoyance, but the smartly persuasive one with frequency capping – a fine trick up your sleeves!

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