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The world of online marketing is a place of endless opportunities, innovation, and potential – but making your way through the ins and outs of the various options for online advertising can be a minefield of algorithms, keywords, and bidding logic that can confuse even the best marketers out there.
To help solve the mystery of Google Ads, we spoke with Google Ads experts and campaigner extraordinaire, Max Roberts, whose agency – bouncecrunch – specialises in running Google Ads campaigns for dental practices across the UK.
First things first – what are Google Ads?
Put simply, Google Ads are adverts that appear in Google search results following a certain search that is made.
When a search is made, for anything dental treatment related, the top 4 results are usually Google Ads.
For example, if a person was considering Invisalign treatment and searched ‘Invisalign Manchester’ or ‘best Invisalign dentist’ or ‘tooth aligners near me’ you can select these keywords, place a bid on them and potentially be placed in one of those top 4 positions.
Google Ads work with a ‘Pay Per Click’ model – so you only pay if the user actually clicks on your ad.
So, when someone clicks on one of these Google Ads, what happens?
They’ll be taken out to a website page – that you choose and pre-set – with more information about the product or the practice that they’ve searched for.
What’s the value in creating a whole separate landing page, rather than just linking to the practice website?
The thing to consider here is that your website is usually not optimised for conversion. It is there to tell your story and is usually developed for Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) – but that’s a whole other world!
When we run Google Ads we know that the user has a very high buying intent – we want to focus on getting them to call up or submit their contact details – nothing else. That’s where the separate landing page comes into play – it can focus on the key details and make sure the lead doesn’t get distracted.
Typically we can achieve a 10% conversion rate using landing pages, whereas your website will be much lower, in the 2-3% range if you’re lucky.
The only time where linking directly to your website could be a good option is for very general, low intent searches – for example ‘dentist in london’ is so unspecific, we would potentially send them to the website so they can navigate their way to what they need.
There’s a rumour going round that Google Ads are only really effective for higher value treatments – is that true?
Not necessarily. We run campaigns for everything from emergency appointments and NHS new patient sign-ups to dental implants and teeth straightening.
You’ll always get a higher return on investment from higher value treatments but generally, your cost per click will be less for lower value treatments – so your cost per lead is less and it then still gives you a very healthy return on investment.
Google Ads is basically one big auction and you are bidding on search terms. The asking price is, therefore, much lower for ’emergency dentist’ than for ‘book invisalign consultation’.
One of the big rivalries of the 21st Century is between Google Ads and Facebook ads, with the common belief being that Google Ads will produce better quality leads who will actually convert…what you do think?
This is mostly the case, yes.
When thinking about this, you need to consider the mindset of the potential lead.
On Social Media, you are using ‘interruption marketing’. You are effectively attempting to interrupt a person scrolling through their social feed and entice them with an attractive offer.
On Google, this is completely different. Here, the lead is already interested in your treatment and is actively making high intent searches based on that.
The result is that you reach people who are much more qualified – in other words, further along in their decision-making journey – when using Google Ads compared to Facebook ads.
That’s not to say that Facebook leads won’t ever convert, it might just take them longer.
Would it be worthwhile running both Google and Facebook Ads at the same time?
Absolutely – in fact, this is something I always recommend. Firstly, if you have the budget, they are both great sources for new patients. They are two of the most useful marketing tactics you can be using.
For those that want to go to that 1% level, with a little extra attention you can harness the power of both types of marketing, by placing tracking on the Google Ads landing pages. If the lead visits the landing page but does not convert (submit their details), you can then show them a ‘re-targeting’ ad on their Social Media platforms and re-engage them that way.
By doing this, you find a cross-over where the interruption marketing, mentioned above, is not a factor and you can show your Facebook Ads back to people who are already highly interested in your treatment.
Finally, we need to tackle the question of cost and budget. Google Ads have a reputation for being expensive or needing a higher budget to get any results. Is that actually the case?
This is an interesting question that I am asked very often.
It truly depends on how many treatments you want to target. If you have a low budget and want to spread this across multiple treatments then it becomes hard to get enough data to optimise your account.
Here are some budgets I would recommend to get you started, though:
Dental Implants: £500-£1500
Teeth Straightening: £500-£2000
General Dentistry: £250-£1000