I'm new to AdWords, and trying to figure out the best keywords to use.

I go to Adwords Keyword Planner, and typed in an example keyword. It gives me an average CPC of $0.94.

But when I go to set up a real campaign and type it the same keyword, I get an error saying 'below first page bid estimate' which is $8.75.

What gives? Is there a better way to get more accurate feedback on how much this will cost?

2 Answers 2


Check out this article on Quality Score. It explains more how CPC is impacted by the quality of your ad/relevance of your ad.

For keyword research, you should also check out this tool: keywordtool.io. It's awesome for recommending long-tail variations.

Usually my keyword research workflow goes at follows:

  1. Look at competitors page, enter the URL in AdWords Keyword Tool to find high-volume 2-word keyword combos.
  2. Copy those combos in keywordtool.io, this generates a long list of longtail variations.
  3. Take the long list enter into the search volume estimator of AdWords keyword tool.
  4. Put into excel, look for a tradeoff between volume and CPC (relatively low CPC, decent volume)

Your specific costs are based on the quality of your ads. The more relevant your ad is, the less you will pay. To make your ad relevant:

  • Match the keywords in the ad text
  • Don't bid on terms where consumers wouldn't be interested in your product.
  • Have a high quality and usable landing page.

These items determine your "quality score" for the Ad. If you are seeing that your bid is way higher than the average for this keyword, you need to focus on your quality and relevance.

  • But my quality score is either 6 or 7 (which is average according to Google).
    – steve cook
    Commented Aug 10, 2013 at 5:09
  • Is that your account quality score? Google has a quality score per ad as well. Often they try to estimate it before you bid based on ad text and landing page. It often then changes dramatically as you get impressions and clicks. Commented Aug 10, 2013 at 11:46
  • That's the per-ad score. I wonder if it has to do with timing? I notice that the CPC can fluctuate during the day.
    – steve cook
    Commented Aug 12, 2013 at 8:18

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