Traffic and bid volume

On this page you will find answers to frequently asked questions relating to the service.

The cost of clicks in Yandex Direct is not fixed — it's based on the results of an auction among advertisers. These auctions are held for every ad that is served. Every ad participates in the auction by placing a bid (i.e. the maximum price that the advertiser is willing to pay for a click when Bid adjustments are factored in). Learn more about how the Yandex Direct auction works.

For automatic strategies, the bid is determined by the system based on your settings. For manual strategies, you can set the bids yourself on the campaign page in the Bid field.

I don't know how much to pay for a click

If you haven't figured out how the system works yet and how to set bids, select one of the automatic strategies when you create a new campaign. That way you won't have to worry about bids. For example, with the Optimize clicks strategy with a weekly budget limit, you just have to enter the amount you are willing to spend on your campaign and Yandex Direct tries to get you as many quality clicks on your ads as possible without exceeding that amount.

What does traffic volume mean?

Traffic volume is a value directly related to the CTR of an ad position. The traffic volume calculation factors in the ad design, number of ads in the section and their designs, and the ad display position on search. For example, if there are four positions in a premium placement, the first position will bring in a traffic volume of 100, and the second, third, and fourth places will bring in a volume of 85, 75, and 65 respectively.

Why can traffic volume exceed 100?

A value of 100 refers to the traffic volume received by an ad displayed in the first of four positions in a premium placement unit. Some ad placement locations may be more "clickable" than the first place in a premium placement. They will get a traffic volume that exceeds 100. For example, ads in expanded format may get that level of traffic.

The bid forecast is too high

Your ad quality and the level of competition for your audience determine your bid forecast.


Other advertisers can also target your audience. The bid calculations you see in the interface factor in your competitors in all the display regions you choose, so even if you have no competitors in one of your regions, it doesn't guarantee that your bid will be low. Ads that could be served from other regions (when extended geotargeting is enabled) also participate in the auction, but they are not included in the traffic volume forecast.

Ad quality

The lower the quality of your ads, the more expensive it will be to serve them. To lower your bid, pay attention to the factors that influence your bid.

CTR forecast

The CTR forecast is used to calculate the bid forecast. This forecast is based on accumulated impression and click statistics for keywords, as well as other parameters that affect how likely a user is to click on an ad, such as whether a word from the search term they entered is in the ad text, user behavior in the display region, etc.

To increase the CTR for your ads, follow the recommendations in Managing ad elements.

Ad quality coefficient

The quality coefficient is a rating of how well your advertised products or services correspond to user interests. Yandex Direct compares an ad and the landing page it leads to with the search term the user entered and what they do on your site.

For each ad and its keywords, select the landing page that best corresponds to the user's search term. For example, if a user searches for “flights to Mars in July”, ads that mention trips to Mars in July and lead to a page where you can buy tickets to Mars in July will get the best results.

What is the click price?

For keywords, the Click price column specifies the average cost you'd pay for an ad click at a given traffic volume. The click price can exceed your bid, for example, if the conversion probability is high.

What is the minimum price on search?

If your bid is lower than the minimum CPC in search results, your ads will only be served on Yandex advertising network member websites and on the All ads page.

The minimum CPC in search results may go up if the site listed in your ad has a poor performance history in Yandex Direct (for example, a low aggregate CTR). If there are no links to a website in your ad, then the placement history of your vCard telephone number is used instead. To ensure that your minimum price doesn't go up, monitor the quality of your other ads and campaigns.

Bids change frequently

Your price forecasts in the Yandex Direct interface may not be factoring in competing ads that were stopped automatically due to time targeting. Additionally, bids may change drastically over the course of a day and your ads may not get the desired traffic volume as frequently. To make sure that competing ads factor into your bid forecast, disable the Do not take into account competitors' automatically stopped ads when setting bids option in the advanced settings section on the campaign settings page.

I can't gather display statistics in order to increase my CTR

If you just launched your ads, don't worry about your cumulated statistics. The CTR forecast is used to calculate the bid forecast. This forecast is not only based on click and display statistics, but also on many other parameters that let you determine clickability, even when impressions first launch.

My account has a high quality index but my bids haven't decreased

Your account quality index doesn't directly affect your bid forecast, even though it closely resembles your CTR forecast. To lower your bid, follow the recommendations described in the Forecasted bid is too high section.

I changed my bids, but was charged based on the old prices

The old price may be deducted for a click if you changed your bid for a stopped campaign and then restarted it. After your campaign is enabled, it takes an average of 40 minutes for it to become active. Approximately 30 minutes after that, your new bids will take effect. During that time, clicks are charged based on the bids that were placed before the campaign was stopped.

The click price is higher than my bid

There are several factors that may cause click prices to exceed the bid you set in the Yandex Direct interface. Please note that the click prices that display by default in your campaign statistics do not include VAT.

  • A bid might get raised automatically if the ad has a high conversion probability.
  • You are using adjustments that raise your bid for a given audience of users. Ads are served to members of that particular audience based on your adjusted bid. More information about bid adjustments.
  • If you lowered your bid less than 30 minutes ago, the older price based on the previous bid may be debited for that click. Please note that if you lower your bid for a campaign that is no longer running and then re-launch it, it takes about 40 minutes on average for the campaign to re-activate. Following this, it takes about 30 minutes for your new bids to take effect. During that time, clicks are charged based on the bids that were placed before the campaign was stopped.

  • You are working with a campaign management app that uses the Yandex Direct API. The app may automatically raise their bid.