Google is the biggest search engine in the world by far. In November 2018, an incredible 73% of online searches occurred through Google , as opposed to 7.91% on Bing. Most people don’t even think about it anymore, using Google as your first port-of-call has become second nature for most people. In many ways, to ‘Google’ something has become synonymous with using the internet at all. Simply put, audiences are far more likely to use Google to find their dentist than any other online platform. Therefore, Google is where you need to direct your efforts. Done correctly, PPC advertising can really help to grow your practice.
Google’s reach is huge
As we have already said, Google is the largest search engine in the world, and this doesn’t look like it is going to change any time soon. Each day there are 3.5 billion searches made on Google, that is 40,000 a second! Compare that to the year 2000 when Google saw a measly 33 million searches per day! Imagine how far Google’s reach will be in 5, 10 or 20 years! Using Google AdWords is an easy, simple and relatively cheap way of getting your name directly in front of those audiences. Google doesn’t just let you show your adverts to the entire world, it allows you to define exactly which audiences, which types of people, you wish to see your advert.
With so many users on Google each day, it is important to let Google know exactly who you wish to advertise to. There is no use showing your advert to someone on the other side of the world; if there isn’t a good possibility a user will find your advert relevant, you’re wasting your money. Google allows you to decide who should be shown the advert based on a large number of data points. Some of the criteria by which you can filter your audiences are:
- Online behaviour
- Previous online activity
You can tell Facebook to only show your ads to audiences who have visited a certain page on your website, who have searched for products and services similar to yours, you can even define audiences based on their lifestyles and milestone events, such as those recently married, or new parents. The ability to target only the people to whom you want to advertise doesn’t just make your adverts for efficient and effective, it keeps the cost down!
In PPC marketing, keywords, as they do with SEO, act as tags that allow search engines to match up your advert with a user’s searched term on Google. If the keywords you have associated with your advert appear in a user’s search, they will see your advert. When choosing your keywords, it is important to understand that you are trying to guess what your intended audiences are searching for. You can’t tell them what to search to find you. You need to get inside their minds, figure out how they behave online and understand what they are searching for. Then you can mimic their searches in your keywords and ensure that yours is the advert they see. A good tip with keywords is to group them together by category. Instead of using separate keywords such as “London”, “Orthodontics” and “emergency”, group them together as “London Emergency Orthodontics”. This helps to further narrow down the audience and really target the most likely leads.
It is also possible to tag your adverts with negative keywords. Negative keywords are the keywords with which you DO NOT want your advert to be associated. For instance, imagine your practice is in York and one of your adverts has the keywords “Emergency Dentist”. You may see some of your adverts being shown to and being engaged with audiences who have searched something like “Emergency Dentist Portsmouth”. Obviously, you do not want audiences 200 miles away seeing your advert, it’s a waste of their time and your money! Google gives you the option of adding this as a negative keyword, meaning anyone who performs the same search in the future will NOT see your advert.
There are 2 main ways of getting yourself to the front page of Google; SEO and PPC. SEO is great; it’s organic, it’s free and it works. However, you could build the perfect website for SEO, but it will still take Google time to index your website as first-page material. The process is not instantaneous, sometimes it’s not even quick! You could make endless improvements to your website and only see it creep up slowly. There are so many factors governing Google’s ranking algorithms, and Google do their best to keep them secret! The good news is, there is a quick and easy fix. With PPC, you can pay to have your advert appear immediately, within seconds, at the very top of the very front page of Google.
Google is, wirthout question, the largest search engine in the world. This makes advertising on Google a no-brainer. If the vast majority of your potential patients are hanging out online in one place, and that place just so happens to be where they will be going to look for you, why wouldn't you advertise there? In terms of reach and demographics, Google is absolutely your best option. Furthermore, Google's platform is relatively cheap and easy to use. You do not have to be a technical or marketing wizard to use the software! Advertising on Google can bring you quick, easy results at a fairly low cost per click.