October 31, 2019
How Much Should A Dental Practice Spend On Google and Bing Ads?
One of the most common questions our dental clients ask is, “How much should we be spending on Google and Bing ads?”
The first thing you need to do is some research. There are several good tools out there for learning what your competitors are spending in your local market and what keywords they are bidding on. At the time of this post we use SEMrush.
Once you know what your competition is spending and the list of keywords you can get a rough idea where you should be to compete. However, just because they are spending a certain amount doesn’t mean you have to. You may not want to compete on all keywords.
This will at least give you a starting point.
Once you have the data you can make some decisions on which keywords you want to show up for and the cost associated with those keywords.
What is the minimum amount you should spend?
This again depends on the average cost per click in your market. If your average cost per click is $12 and you set your budget at $300 per month you can’t expect to get much traffic.
Setting your budget too low is a bit like buying a small ad in the newspaper and when you get no calls assume that newspaper ads don’t work.
If you look at your current website traffic before running ads and determine that you need 30 visitors to the site to get one conversion/new patient, then a simple calculation tells you that less than 30 visitors from ads is not likely to produce any new patients. For a budget of $300 in a market where a click costs $10 you can’t expect any more than one new patient at best.
This might be ok if your new patient value is $1000 but averages work better with larger numbers than 1!
Don’t just set it and forget it.
Once you decide on your list of keywords and your budget, one of the biggest mistakes people make is to set it up and then just let it go. The first month or two can give you a ton of information that can help you get better ROI if you make some small (or sometimes big) changes to tweak the campaign based on that data.
Track Your Results
Clicks aren’t worth anything if they don’t convert to new patients. If you aren’t tracking your conversions from your paid ads then you are definitely spending money on clicks you shouldn’t be. You can use tools that are built into Google Ads and Google Analytics to help track results for free so there is no excuse.
There are also many 3rd party tools out there to help measure conversions by allowing you to track phone calls and even tie each conversion to the actual value of the patients gained through your ads campaigns.
Tracking your results will turn your ad campaigns from and expense into an investment. You will learn things like what keywords are converting and which ones are costing you but never seem to convert.
If your practice stacks up well against your competition then you will likely do well with PPC advertising. Invest an amount that you are comfortable with based on your research.
If you get a positive ROI then spend as much as your cashflow can handle until you notice diminishing returns. If you don’t get a positive ROI then you should stop until you figure out why.
Trent Wehrhahn is the founder and President of Dental Growth Strategies. With his years of multinational sales and marketing experience with dental offices, he has focused his strengths on marketing solutions for local dental offices just like yours.
At DGS we help you assess where you are at and implement a custom marketing plan that gets results.