Pay-per-click advertising (PPC) can be a key component of a dental practice’s online marketing strategy. In our recent webinar on PPC, we heard a lot of great questions from dentists like you.
If you’ve been considering PPC for your practice, or have a simple interest in learning more to see if it’s a right fit, we highlighted these questions here so you can get a better idea of what’s entailed.
Q: How much do clicks cost?
A: While a common question, it’s also the hardest to answer, as there are numerous factors that go into determining bids for certain keywords.
First, it’s important to understand that Google’s AdWords platform runs as an auction. Similar to how you would bid for a product on eBay, with AdWords, you tell the “seller” (Google) what you are willing to pay for the “product” (the keywords/location you want to target).
You’ll typically pay 60-80% of your bid, depending on what others bid and what the competition in the targeted location is. For example, AdWords Keyword Planner shows a suggested bid of $14.56for “dental implants” in San Jose, CA and $9.67in Omaha, NE. Since keywords and competition vary in each market, it’s important to have a somewhat flexible budget when beginning your initial campaigns.
Q: What is a typical PPC budget for a sole-practitioner?
A: As outlined above, it depends on various factors, however, we typically recommend that dentists put at least $400 per month toward AdWords. Distributed evenly throughout the month, this equates to $13 available daily for clicks. Therefore, if one click on your AdWords ad costs $6, you only have enough spend for two clicks (potential new clients) daily. Running out of budget during the day will cause AdWords to stop your ads until more budget is available the following day. This is why dentists in highly-competitive markets can easily hit their maximum daily spend, while those in less competitive areas may only reach the max once or twice a week.
While expanding your budget is one way to obtain more leads, optimizing your campaign can help you stretch your budget even further by analyzing metrics such as impressions, click-thru-rate and conversions for targeted keywords and/or locations to learn where your money is best spent and get the best return on your investment.
Q: Do I need another website set up for PPC, in addition to the website I already have?
A: No. But you should create landing pages for your PPC ads. A landing page is different than a normal web page because it is created specifically for an advertisement. When someone clicks your PPC ad about teeth whitening services, you don’t want to send them to your website homepage where they must dig for more information about this topic. Instead, you want to send them to a landing page that is specifically about teeth whitening since this is what they were interested in first. Make sure your landing pages have a strong call-to-action and help the reader understand what they should do next (e.g. fill out a form for a free consultation).
Q: How are web pages set up so that AdWords recognizes when someone want to be contacted?
A: Once a landing page is created, a form is added to the landing page. That form will then gather information submitted by a web visitor on the form so you may contact them about your services. After the web visitor submits their information, they are directed to a “Thank You” page, which should thank them for their interest and let them know what next steps are, such as how long it will be until they hear from you or someone at your firm.
Once the “Thank You” page loads, an AdWords conversion pixel (usually added by your webmaster during your campaign setup process), is triggered. This communicates to AdWords that a “conversion” has occurred. The pixel is will only be triggered if the person lands on your website through search engine advertising.
Tracking conversions from PPC advertising allows you to track your ROI on the channel. It also helps you identify where to improve content to maximize the effectiveness of your campaign. For example, AdWords will show you how many clicks your ad has received, but also how many people contact you once they visit your landing page. If you’re getting a lot of clicks, but not a lot of conversions, you may want to revisit the messaging on your webpage.
Q: When should I add PPC to my online marketing strategy?
A: Now! PPC ads are a quick and super-targeted way to get your firm noticed by new patients. You can get PPC ads up and running within just a couple of days.