As the advertising world evolves new discussions take place every day and CPC vs CPM is no different. Over the years advertisers have been trumpeting about which strategy is better for business and what is the best way to apply those strategies. 

Today we want to clarify the CPC vs CPM discussion so that you get the best perspective on what benefits with one brings you and you can apply them to your business. 

What is CPC? 

With CPC ( cost per click) bidding, you are paying when someone clicks your ads. This bidding method is directly related to search networks and mainly used when trying to bring traffic to your website.

What is CPM? 

With CPM( cost per mile) bidding, you are paying for the thousand views that your ads get. CPM is often used when trying to increase brand visibility and mainly used to target display networks. 

Which one is better?

When we talk about CPC vs CPM the main difference is the cost. When you use CPM, as you are paying for impressions, the cost is way lower than for clicks. For example: you might pay 2 dollars for a single quality click and 20 dollars for a thousand impressions. If you are using CPM and 10 people click your ad is already enough to equal the costs. If you had 5 people click your ad though CPC, you would get twice the clicks.  

The main problem with CPM is the consistency of the clicks, you can get 100 clicks, 50 clicks, or 0 clicks. When using this bidding strategy is crucial that you have an optimized ad. If your ad isn’t clickable doesn’t really matter how much impressions you have, no one will click it! 

One the other hand CPC guarantees you that you only pay for the people that click your ad and if you are not the one that likes to risk having no clicks this is probably the best option for you. 

“Should I use CPC or CPM then?” 

Your advice is the following if you are fully confident about your ad, you optimized it and now that the ad is going to do well, you can use CPM. When using CPM with everything optimized and a decent spending budget you can get 2 or 3 times the clicks that you could get with CPC. 

The problem here is as we said even the small mistake on your ad can make you have low clicks, having a perfectly optimized ad is not impossible but there is always something that escapes our eye site. To be sure that you don’t waste money a CPC strategy can be your best friend.

Take into consideration that with this strategy there will always be clicks, increasing your chances of conversion rate and reducing ad blindness. 

“I still prefer CPM, how can I optimize my ads” 

To optimize your ads there is a lot of strategies you can use! If you want to really catch the eye of the consumer trying video ads can be a great way to do so. If you still prefer banner ads we have a great article helping you understand the techniques that you can apply to make them the most effective possible.


To conclude the discussion CPC vs CPM we can say that CPM is riskier that CPC, while CPC guarantees you click, CPM doesn’t guarantee you anything, here you are completely depending on the quality of your ad. 

CPM can be great for:

  • Raising brand awareness 
  • Offer relevant leads when using a high CPM
  • Increasing views in video ads 

CPC can be great for:

  • Leads from relevant people 
  • Only pay to the one that is interested in your ads 
Using this as references you can see where your goals fit better and based on that you chose which one is better for you!