Search Engine Marketing (PPC) for Dentists

 

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Getting to the top in organic search, preferably the first page, isn’t easy. So, how can a dental practice hedge its bets when trying to help potential patients find their site?
 
Paid search advertising. With paid search advertising you can jump right to the top of the search page…you just have to pay for it.
 
Paid search advertising is the centerpiece of search engine marketing, commonly known as SEM. At Advice Media we use a variety of SEM tools and strategies to help your dental practice increase visibility and ROI. Let’s detail some of these.

What is PPC?

Pay per click (PPC) listings are paid ads offered by search engines. The difference is the payment/cost mechanisms. Compare PPC to a traditional newspaper ad, for instance. With a newspaper ad, Bob’s House of Dentures has no idea if its ad is read unless it puts some sort of tracking mechanism or coupon in the ad, something like “Bring in this ad for a free denture re-fitting.” Still, Bob doesn’t really know if people saw the ad and actually read it and interacted with it (without using the coupon), yet he is charged for the ad based on its size. That price is, in theory, based on numbers of readers, but, even if those numbers aren’t fudged, Bob has no idea if he’s getting his money’s worth out of the ad.

Businesses make an average of $2 in revenue for every $1 they spend on Google Ads.
Source: Google Economic Impact Report

 

With pay per click, Bob would only be charged when his ad is actually clicked on and the visitor is taken to the landing page designated by Bob. In this case, maybe he wants them to hit his “Implant-Supported Dentures” page. He would be charged the amount of money per click that he agreed to in an auction for certain keywords and search terms. His ranking in those paid search results would depend on how he did in the auction. If 100 people clicked on the ad, Bob would then owe Google or Microsoft 100 multiplied by his bid amount.

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That Sounds Perfect, But PPC Is Not So Easy

Google Ads for dentistsPay per click sounds perfect. After all, if you only pay for someone who already hit your dental practice website, then it’s a win. Well, that’s true if “visits” are your only criteria for success. But most practices want appointments or phone calls with questions; they don’t solely want website visits.

Let’s say you pay for the keywords “Dental Implants” and your practice is in Chicago. Chances are you’re going to have lots of competitors wanting those same keywords, so the prices will be high. Plus, if your bid amount ranked in the number one or two slot of the paid results, you’re going to get a lot of visitors who may not be looking to have dental implants, but maybe are curious about what they are, even though their teeth are fine. And you’re going to have to pay for all of those visitors who click on your ad, even though the vast majority of those visitors have no interest in coming in to have a dental implant placed at your practice.

That’s why it’s best to have more targeted keywords, better yet “long-tail keywords.” Long-tail keywords involve more specific searches involving more words, hence “long-tail.” For instance, let’s say you’re that same Chicago dentist but you specialize in All-on-4 dental implants. You could bid on this keyword phrase: Chicago All-on-4 Dental Implants. Those keywords will be far cheaper because far fewer practices will be bidding on them, and they will generate visitors who’ve already done some research and know the term “All-on-4” is a method of placing full arches of artificial teeth anchored by four dental implants per arch, all in one day. These visitors are realistic prospects that could become new patients.


Bidding Is Price + Site Quality

PPC for DentistThe price you are charged may not be the highest price bid. Huh? It can get a little complicated, but here are the bare bones of how this works. Search engines either increase or decrease the bid amount necessary by multiplying it by your site’s “quality score.” If your site has a high quality score you could bid a far lower price and still come out in the first or second ad rank position.

That’s why you want a quality dental practice website, the only kind we create at Advice Media. Google and Bing weigh things such as the landing page where you’re sending your ad clickers. Is the content valid for the searcher? For instance, if your PPC ad touted Chicago’s Highest Rated Dentist, but the landing page was about teeth whitening because you’re having a special, Google and Bing wouldn’t find that page relevant to what your ad touted. Kind of like bait and switch where a store advertises an item on sale but only has three in stock, so it tries to up-sell customers coming in to buy the sale item that is quickly out of stock.

Here are some other items that are taken into consideration. Is your content rich and original (not plagiarized or duplicated from elsewhere on your site)? Do users hit that page and then click to a further, deeper link? How long do they spend on the page? Those kinds of metrics will affect your quality score.

So, if your dental practice website is populated with weak content, your quality score will be lower. If visitors don’t stay and interact with your site, that denotes lower quality. But if you have rich content, easily searchable pages, helpful tags behind the scenes, a blog with continually new content, and the other tenets of a great website, your quality score will be high, so your pay per click cost can be lower.

As you can see, pay per click seems easy and straightforward on the surface, but using it profitably is somewhat of an art form. Bidding involves certain nuances. Finding the right keywords is a science unto itself. Long-tail searches are great if you can come up with them. Plus, you need to really stay on top of your pay per click campaigns.

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Let Advice Media Handle Your PPC Campaigns

As you can see, pay per click advertising seems easy and perfect — after all, you only pay for actual hits, right? — but it is quite complicated. And you’re busy keeping your patients’ smiles bright and healthy.

It’s a better idea to let the team at Advice Media handle your PPC campaigns. This is what we do every day. Every day you remove decay, place crowns, and keep your patients smiling.

Google Adwords for dentist
Here’s what you can expect when Advice Media is handling your PPC marketing:
 
  • Potential customer targeting in your area (via Google) who are searching for your offered services
  • Keyword research, expansion, implementation, and match-type tiered bidding
  • Ad management by a Certified Google Partner Company
  • Search query report optimization and waste reduction for the highest quality traffic
  • Phone call and lead conversion tracking to refine ads and maximize results
  • A/B split testing to find the best ad copy
  • Monitoring and maintaining click-through-rate via keywords, ad copy, and quality score
  •  

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    More Than Just Text — Display Advertising

    Display advertising is another aspect of SEM that we use for our dental practices. These ads are similar to PPC ads in that they are paid, but display ads don’t show up in search results. Instead, display ads appear on websites and online media to targeted users based on demographics, interests, and search topics.
     
    You know these ads. Maybe you’ve been looking at tennis racquets on a website like Tennis Express, and looked at the descriptions of different racquets. Maybe you watched a racquet review video and looked at comparisons between similar models. Then you clicked out and got back to work. Now, every time you visit any website (not actually true, but it can feel that way), ads from Tennis Express and those exact racquets stalk you.
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    “Advice media has been a great support to our company! They provide consistent, timely reporting and the information required to make suggestions and changes. Our digital footprint has absolutely grown in direct reflection of our relationship with ADVICE MEDIA.” -Donna C.

     
    As opposed to appearing atop a list of search results on a SERP. Display ads are embedded within sites that your potential customers are searching through. This is basically like buying ad space in online media. As a Certified Google Partner, we can utilize Google’s vast network of millions of websites and blogs, which reach 92 percent of all Internet users in the United States. For display ads, we usually execute them for our dental practice sites on a cost-per-click basis.

    As with PPC, it’s wise to simply let us handle display ads for your dental practice. Here’s what you can expect:

  • Potential customer targeting in your area (via Google’s Display Network) with ads on websites and online media
  • Ad management by a Certified Google Partner Company
  • Focus on websites with keywords related to your practice and the services you want to be known for
  • Narrow demographics — including gender, age, interests, and search topics — for more accurate ad placement
  • Targeting based on search intent
  • Ad copy, keywords, and settings optimized to drive patients to contact your office
  • Placement optimization and monitoring, including website exclusions for lower click-through and conversion rates
  • Phone call and lead conversion tracking to refine ads and maximize results
  • A/B split testing of display ad copy and layout
  • Monitoring and maintaining click-through-rate keyword, ad copy, and quality score
  • SEM can be complicated and we know you’re busy removing decay and scaling gums, placing dental implants and pulling wisdom teeth. This aspect of your digital marketing needs constant attention, so why not let the pros at Advice Media handle it for you and drive more potential patients through your front door?

    Check out our dental website portfolio and then let’s talk. Complete the form below or call (435) 575-7470.

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    We know healthcare. For more than twenty years, we have helped thousands of medical practices grow online. Ask for our featured case studies. To receive more information about Search Engine Marketing (PPC) for Dentists, please complete the form below or call (435) 575-7470.

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