150 of The Most Expensive Keywords on Google (By Industry)

Adsense High Cpc Keywords || Most Expensive Keywords

You may have heard that Google Ads is a quick way to get ROI from search engine traffic. This is an appealing prospect, especially because Google runs on a PPC (pay per click) model where you only pay for traffic that actually makes it to your site. However, handing Google your money is a concerning prospect, especially if you’ve heard rumours that it can be cost-prohibitive if you’re bidding in a competitive space on some of the most expensive keywords.

The best thing you can do for your strategy is understand exactly how Google Ads determines cost per click (CPC) on specific keywords, what makes certain keywords more expensive, and how you can build your ad budget in a way that actually gives you ROI.

How Does Google Ads Determine Keyword Costs?

Google has many different sources of revenue, but one of their most noticeable is the ads that appear next to search results for specific keywords. How much that keyword costs depends, in part, on how often people search for it — the more people search for a certain keyword, the more expensive it is.

Ad placement is determined by an action system. The combined impact of these two factors will determine if and where your ad is placed on the page when a user searches for your query:

The maximum bid you specify for the keyword

The Quality Score that Google has given your ad

These two factors will help Google determine your ad rank. In short, higher bids and higher quality ads win the best placements.

Free Guide, Template & Planner: How to Use Google Ads for Business/

If a user ends up clicking on your ad, Google determines the cost of that click using the following formula:

The ad rank of the person below you divided by your quality score plus $0.01.

With this in mind, as long as you have a solid keyword strategy and high-quality ads, you can win ad placements even over organisations that are spending more on Google Ads than you are. The only thing to keep in mind is how strict your competition is.

Most Expensive Keywords by Industry

While it’s difficult to quantify the most expensive keywords on Google because of the sheer amount of data that changes daily, we’ve broken down the most expensive keywords for some of the most common industries:


Top CPC: $1090.00 Average CPC: $6.75

The legal industry has some of the highest CPCs in this article, primarily due to the high amount of competition they’re up against and the higher ticket service cost. For this industry, we looked at keywords relating to “lawyer,” “attorney,” “legal services,” and a few other related keywords. Here are the ones that topped the list:

KEYWORD CPC HOUSTON MARITIME ATTORNEY $ 1,090.00 offshore accident lawyer$815.00 best motorcycle accident lawyer $770.0018 wheeler accident lawyer san antonio $670.00 scranton personal injury lawyer $560.00 truck accident attorney dallas $515.00 houston trucking accident attorney $500.00 mesothelioma attorney assistance $490.00new york construction accident lawyer$485.00maritime lawyer new orleans$485.00california auto accident lawyer $475.00auto accident attorney houston offshore accident lawyer, california$465.00auto accident attorney colorado springs$460.00car accident lawyer jacksonville$430.00truck accident lawyer dallas$425.00


Top CPC: $90.00 Average CPC: $2.62

What’s curious about this is that we targeted keywords around the top most common types of doctors, yet it was still urgent care and detox programs that dominated the highest costs per click.

KEYWORD CPC URGENT CARE EMR $90.00 hospital alcohol detox$65.00dermatological problem$65.00fort lauderdale hospital detox$65.00transporter hospital$60.00children’s hospital emergency room near me $60.00 kensington hospital detox $60.00 urgent care jasper tx$55.00 children’s oakland hospital $55.00 weight loss surgery dallas tx $55.00 urgent care snider plaza $50.00 dallas bariatric $45.00 endocrine weight loss $45.00 urgent care 77041$45.00 urgent care electronic medical records $40.00

Marketing & Advertising

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Top CPC: $165.00 Average CPC: $3.33

Marketing professionals in this space presumably know advertising tricks to help keep costs down, but this industry is also more likely to put value in Google Ads. That’s why the average CPC is relatively reasonable compared to these top CPC keywords:

KEYWORD CPC WHAT IS MARKETING CHANNELS$165.00call tracking marketing$125.00marketing your law firm$120.00seo and social media marketing services$115.00affiliate marketing software free$110.00law firm marketing los angeles$100.00marketing automation for agencies$100.00what does cpm stand for in advertising$95.003 p of marketing$95.00marketing cloud software$90.00ppc advertising management$80.00marketing integration$80.00email marketing automation software$80.00what does ppc stand for in marketing$75.00best marketing quotes$75.00

Business Software

Top CPC: $95.00 Average CPC: $3.80

For this category, we didn’t want to include “SAAS” since that would not be a keyword a consumer would use to find the software of their choice. Instead, we used aggregate keywords around “business software” to see what the most expensive CPCs would be:

KEYWORD CPC COMPLETE BUSINESS SOLUTION$95.00top 10 help desk software$95.00help desk software for small business$90.00small business call centre software$85.00accounting online program$70.00best online accounting program$60.00business performance management software$60.00employee management software for small business$60.00email marketing software for small business$55.00best medical billing software for home based business$55.00marketing automation software for small business$55.00best crm software for small business$55.00crm software for small business$55.00best hr software for small business$50.00small business marketing software$50.00

Real Estate

Top CPC: $95.00 Average CPC: $2.37

Curiously, despite pooling all keywords related to “real estate agent” and “REALTOR” along with the other service-based keywords, it was the descriptive keywords using “fast” or “with cash” that seemed to outpace all others when it came to cost per click.

KEYWORDS SELL HOUSE FAST AUSTIN$95.00sell my house fast phoenix$70.00sell my house fast austin$65.00sell my house fast san diego$65.00selling a house as is by owner$60.00teacher home buying programs texas$60.00sell my house fast orlando$60.00quickly sell house$55.00we buy houses fast for cash$55.00will my house sell$55.00sell house cash$55.00buy house cash or mortgage$50.00sell house fast for cash$50.00buy my home for cash$50.00worst month to sell a house$60.00

Home Improvement Services

Top CPC: $320.00 Average CPC: $6.40

The home improvement industry is a large one, but we focused primarily on services such as HVAC, plumbing, and restoration and renovation. It seemed as though air conditioning and water damage seemed to be the ones with the dominant CPC in this group:

KEYWORD CPC AC REPAIR CORAL SPRINGS FL$320.00emergency flood repair$265.00flood restoration san diego$210.00air conditioning repair weatherford tx$210.00best ac repair phoenix$185.00air conditioning repair boca raton$150.00water damage restoration portland oregon$145.00water damage restoration los angeles$145.00air conditioning repair phoenix$140.00air conditioning repair mesa az$135.00air conditioning repair simi valley$125.00air conditioning repair plano tx$120.00water damage restoration mesa az$120.00water damage restoration dallas$120.00water damage restoration vancouver wa$115.00


Top CPC: $50.00 Average CPC: $2.46

For this industry, we decided to pull keywords relating to “auto repair,” “auto body,” and “dent removal,” taking care to remove any insurance or car accident litigation keywords. You’ll notice that lower ticket items such as oil changes and tire services are not present on this list. We can reasonably assume that advertisers in this category want to put their advertising dollars toward higher ticket items:

KEYWORD CPC AUTO REPAIR SHOP MODESTO CA$50.00 paintless dent repair denver colorado$45.00abs unlimited auto repair$45.00paintless dent repair mn$40.00denver auto hail repair$35.00change oil light$35.00automotive repair lubbock tx$30.00auto repair shops stockton ca$30.00paintless dent repair colorado springs$25.00auto ac repair las vegas$25.00auto repair shops omaha ne$25.00auto repair shop mesa az$25.00aftermarket automotive warranty$25.00dent repair colorado springs$25.00paintless dent repair denver$25.00


Top CPC: $280.00 Average CPC: $3.44

Car insurance completely dominated the insurance industry:

KEYWORD CPC COMPARE VEHICLE INSURANCE$280.00oklahoma auto insurance quotes$210.00insurance companies okc$185.00cheapest auto insurance reddit$170.00insurance strategy$160.00texas auto insurance quotes online$155.00preferred auto insurance companies$150.00what is insurance deductible$140.00what is premiums in insurance$135.00fort myers auto insurance$130.00auto insurance connecticut$125.00definition collision insurance$125.00hail damage car insurance claim$120.00car accident other driver has no insurance$120.00define insurance brokers$120.00

Loans & Finance

Top CPC: $320.00 Average CPC: $3.44

In the finance space, we compiled keywords relating to banking, credit, debt, loans, mortgages, and more. The common theme among the high-CPC keywords was debt relief or loan acquisition (VA loans being especially popular):

KEYWORDS IRS TAX DEBT RELIEF PROGRAM$320.00va loan multi family$190.00tax credit for college students$135.00va loan after chapter 7$130.00how to get preapproved for a va home loan$125.00structured settlement loan$105.00national guard va home loan$95.00cost to refinance home loan$95.00how long does a credit card balance transfer take$90.00va home loan specialist$85.00will refinancing hurt my credit$85.00maximum fha loan amount$85.00does opening a checking account affect credit$80.00fha loan foreclosure waiting period$80.00tax debt relief program$75.00


Top CPC: $140.00 Average CPC: $2.40

It’s clear that online learning overtook the list of high-CPC keywords. This is likely due to smaller ticket educational items such as certifications, courses, and training not providing high enough ROI to justify such high costs per click.

KEYWORD CPC ONLINE BUSINESS DEGREE PROGRAMS ACCREDITED$140.00online accredited psychology degree$135.00online degree in educational psychology$135.00online business degree florida$135.00online university college$125.00online psychology bachelor’s degree$125.00online college business degree$125.00fastest criminal justice degree online$125.00online masters degree in business administration$125.00parapsychology degree online$125.00online degree criminal justice$120.00online school for business degree$120.00online masters degree programs in healthcare administration$120.00masters degree in human resources online$120.00public administration masters degree online$115.00

Some Notes About Our Methods:

The list of highest CPC keywords was determined from approximately 10,000 related keywords per industry. This information was accessed from Ahrefs and compiled on April 3, 2020 and should be used only for editorial purposes as there are many more keywords out there, CPC is subject to change with current industry and economic conditions, and keyword tools will provide differing data. Be sure to perform your own keyword research before making advertising decisions.

The average CPC per industry is unable to be determined from small datasets, so we pulled this information from WordStream’s keyword benchmarking report.

Didn’t see your industry represented? Follow the steps below to find the keyword costs for your most relevant keywords.

How Do I Find Out How Much a Keyword Costs?

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Thankfully, not everything on the Google Ads platform is so expensive. In fact, WordStream estimates that the average CPC on Google is between $1 and $2.

With CPCs like that, you might be ready to:

Decide if Google Ads is right for your business

Find out the true cost of your most desired keywords

Estimate the budget that it will take to power your lead generation engine

The unfortunate part, though, is that Google’s Keyword Planner is no longer available for use if you don’t have an account. That means you’d have to go through the entire process of signing up and providing your payment information upfront, before you’re ready to create your first campaign.

That means you need a way to find keyword cost estimates before committing to a campaign. Here’s how:

Use a Third-Party Keyword Research Tool

The good news is that Google is not the only place where you can get data about keyword cost and volume. There are a number of keyword research tools that you can use to estimate CPC for the keywords you want to target in your campaign.

Brand Overflow

Brand Overflow allows you to look up 10 keywords completely free, so if you’re doing preliminary research, this is a great option. After your 10 free keywords, their plans start at $9 per month.

Here’s how to estimate CPC in Brand Overflow:

Navigate to the Keyword Tool.

Type your desired keyword in the first field.

Ensure that the second field accurately describes the geographic location you’re targeting.

Click the Search button.

Scroll down and look for the AVG CPC box on the left.


SEMrush is also a full-scale SEM and SEO platform that includes keyword research and discovery as just a subset of its functionality. Unfortunately, it does not offer any free keyword searches without signing up for an account.

Plans start at $99.95 per month, but have the option to take advantage of a 7-day free trial. This is a great option for those who are doing more in the digital space than just setting up a Google campaign.

Here’s how to estimate CPC in SEMrush:

Create an account or log in.

Type your keyword into the search bar at the top.

Click the Search button.

You will be directed to the Keyword Overview tool, and CPC is at the bottom of the first box on the left.


Ahrefs is also a full-scale SEM and SEO platform. Its plans start at $99, but there is no free trial. In order to determine if this software is worth the investment, you can start a 7-day trial where you get access to all features for $7.

This is also a great option for individuals investing in search as part of their ongoing website and digital marketing strategies.

Here’s how to estimate CPC in Ahrefs:

Create an account or log in.

Click the Keywords explorer option in the top menu.

Ensure Google is selected at the top of the field.

Type your keyword(s) into the field. If you are wanting to do multiple keywords at once, separate them with commas or line breaks.

Click the button with the magnifying glass.

CPC is represented in the third box in the top row.

Set up a Fake Campaign in Google Ads

If the cost of a third-party keyword research tool turns you off, you can still use Google’s Keyword Planner. You just have to go through the campaign process and then turn the campaign off.

Note: By doing this, you’ll see a temporary $50 authorization which Google uses to verify your payment information. This is typically removed within a week. If you don’t turn off your campaign, your card will be charged every 30 days or when you reach your billing threshold. Be sure to review Google’s billing policies yourself before taking this advice.

Here are the steps:

Sign up for a Google  Ads account.

Go through the prompts to set up your first campaign.

Once complete, click Explore Your Campaign.

In the first card that shows the campaign you just created, click the arrow next to Pending.

Select Pause campaign.

Once you verify that you really want to pause the campaign, you now have a Google Ads account and can use the Keyword Planner for free (once the verification money is returned to you, of course). The plus side to this approach is that if you decide to move forward after your keyword research, you already have an account set up and a jump start on building a campaign.

Here’s how to estimate CPC in Google’s Keyword Planner:

Navigate to the Keyword Planner.

Click Get search volume and forecasts.

Type your keyword(s) into the field. If you are wanting to do multiple keywords at once, separate them with commas or line breaks.

Select Historical Metrics from the top menu.

Instead of providing an average CPC, Google provides a low range estimate and a high range estimate. These are represented in columns on the left side of the table.

Getting CPC costs for your target keywords is the first step toward setting up your Google Ads campaign. The next thing you’ll want to do is determine the budget you’ll need to achieve your goals with the campaign. Start by reading our Ultimate Guide on Google Ads or downloading our free Ads kit.