Some things in life are easy to avoid – sushi from a food truck on a summer day, anyone? Other things, like your online dental marketing strategy, require more thought. A number of components factor into successful online advertising, specifically pay-per-click (PPC). Don’t have time to explore them all? You’re in luck – in the interest of efficiency we’ve highlighted five common pitfalls to avoid, which can conveniently be applied to life in general (you’re welcome). When you have time for more in-depth reading download A Dentist’s Guide to Getting More Profitable Patients with Google AdWords for a deep dive into pay-per-click advertising.
Pitfall #1: Assuming all is well
As Greek philosophy and depressing lyrics teach us, “The only constant in life is change.” Nowhere is that more evident than in the real life Hunger Games that is Google AdWords. As more competitors jump into the arena it’s critical to keep tabs on campaign metrics. Key indicators of your PPC campaign performance such as average ad position, conversion rate, impression share, and cost-per-click are in constant flux. So even if your campaigns have been delivering positive results, taking a break from tracking can have a negative impact. If we lost you at ‘key indicators,’ don’t worry; our latest whitepaper breaks down each metric.
Pitfall #2: Turning your back on automation
Automation is a beautiful thing (looking at you, Starbucks mobile app), but it can also be dangerous (hmm… Google’s driverless car). If you choose to automate your AdWords budget, beware that failing to monitor campaign progress frequently can mean wasting budget on underperforming keywords and/or ads. Due to the number of fluctuating factors that go into Google’s pricing algorithm (time of day, number of bidders, quality score, etc.), it’s important to make this a regular habit. Note: if you outsource your online advertising campaigns, make sure consistent tracking is included in the service.
Pitfall #3: Thinking everyone has your best interest in mind
All men may be created equal, but all pricing models are not. When shopping for a consultant to assist with your online advertising, it’s important to be cognizant of different fee structures. While one model charges you a percentage of your ad spend, others use hourly or flat fees. At first glance a straightforward percentage may seem fair, but this formula (% of Your Budget = $ Consultant Revenue) may results in clouded judgement when it comes to suggesting an appropriate budget. Your best bet is to opt for a flat fee or hourly price.
Pitfall #4: Underestimating the importance of consistency
Like your co-worker who’s smiling ear-to-ear one day and glaring at you the next, inconsistency doesn’t exactly invite engagement. When creating pay-per-click advertisements, ensure that your ad and the corresponding landing page have a consistent message. If the ad promotes a teeth whitening special, but the landing page doesn’t mention it visitors won’t take the time to dig around your site for the info they need.
Pitfall #5: Ignoring what goes on behind the scenes
Google is on a quest to deliver the best user experience possible – to everyone – every day. Talk about high expectations! To make this happen, they’re constantly changing facets of both search and advertising experiences. This means algorithms that determine how your practice ranks, what you pay per click, etc. aren’t static. As Google alters these complex formulas your campaigns need to adapt; otherwise, you’re throwing money out the proverbial window.
If done correctly, PPC advertising is one of the fastest ways to impact your website traffic and the number of visitors taking action – but there’s a lot to it. From staying on top of campaign metrics and changing algorithms, to ensuring ads and landing pages resonate, effective PPC advertising requires time and effort. Whether you’re researching the pros and cons of PPC or are looking for ways to optimize current campaigns, download our free white paper, A Dentist’s Guide to Getting More Profitable Patients with Google AdWords by filling out this form.