Fourth Quarter 2019 Digital Marketing Benchmarks for Home Builders

The strategies behind Home builder marketing efforts on Facebook and Google continue to shift as both companies continue to increase the power of their AI. In January, Facebook released a way for users to see what information it tracks and gathers from people when they’re not on Facebook. You can check out your own data and erase it here. Google isn’t quite as transparent, but it too, is collecting data points constantly. 

Using this info both platforms can draw conclusions about users and show them relevant ads. For example, if I visit one mattress website, suddenly my Facebook feed will be full of mattress ads from that company’s competitors. And then websites I visit will have Google ads for those same mattress companies, plus both Google and Facebook will show me retargeting ads for the website I did visit. 

In Google search, Google knows which websites are competing for keywords so if I search for the name of one mattress company, I’m likely to be served ads for its competitors, without those competitors having to add the names of their competitors to a campaign as keywords. Using these tools enables us as marketers to be more efficient in our spending and run more concentrated campaigns across platforms. 


Taking advantage of the Facebook Pixel and the information it is able to gather, we continue to have higher than industry average click through rates for home builders. While there was a decrease from 4.48% to 3.87% much of this can be attributed to seasonality.

The Click Through Rate for the fourth quarter is 3.87%. This is nearly 4 times the industry average of .99%. The fourth quarter results show a decline in CTR of 13.6% from the third quarter and a less than 2% decline over the fourth quarter of 2018. 


As Google continues to optimize its algorithm and its AI gets smarter over time, we as marketers also have to make adjustments in our strategy to accompany these technological shifts. In Q4 we revised our keyword strategy to make our clients campaigns more streamlined and effective, ultimately making their marketing dollars go further.

4th Quarter Click Through Rate for our clients Google Search Ads was 6.49%, an 11% increase since last quarter. This exceeds the Real Estate industry average of 3.71% by 43%!

In Q4 our average Cost per Click for our client’s Google Search Ads was 11% LOWER than the Real Estate industry average of $2.37

In terms of Google Display advertising, we’ve been moving towards using Google’s Responsive Display Ad design over the more traditional styled banner creative. Google’s Responsive Display Ad format performs 40% better than traditional display creative. Because these ads use a variety of assets, Google has the ability to optimize your assets in order to create the most compelling version of your display ad. In addition to Google’s ad optimization, the Responsive Display Ads reach a broader audience, across devices, because the ads automatically adjust their size, appearance, and format to fit just about any available ad space.

In Q4 our clients Average Cost per Click for their Google Display ads dropped dramatically by 32%, averaging out at less than 30 cents per click! 


Our clients average CTR for Google Display ads increased by 27% quarter over quarter, but is still slightly below the industry average. However, because these display ads are responsive and can adjust to all devices, we’ve seen a huge uptick in the amount of available impressions, so a lower display CTR makes sense when considering the increase in impressions shown. 


Strategy in digital advertising changes constantly because platforms continue to evolve and grow in their capabilities. Both Facebook and Google make most of their revenue from ads, so it’s important for them to find new ways to grow that revenue. This means we’re constantly reading and learning to make sure our customers are receiving the most current information. In today’s market, what worked last year and sometimes even yesterday, doesn’t work today. If you’re not up to date on the newest changes, the digital campaigns will suffer. Resting on laurels when running Facebook and Google Ads is not an option.

Send us an email and let us show you how our competitive advantage can help your company.

We share these trends quarterly so be sure and subscribe to our blog by clicking here

Molly White

Molly White

Digital Strategist

I am a passionate early adopter. At ONeil Interactive I help clients put their best technological foot forward while generating high quality leads with digital campaigns that consistently beat industry averages.