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Landing Pages: How your practice can improve your online ad campaigns

Many medical practices run Google Pay per Click ads (AdWords) and Facebook/Instagram ad campaigns to generate new patients from the Internet. Of the practices that are not happy with the number of new patients their ads are producing, many make a crucial mistake: They haven't put much thought into a landing page.

No matter how good your ads themselves may be, without a good landing page, you're significantly decreasing your chances of success. This is why it is necessary to understand the importance of a landing page and how to use one to boost the results from your online ads.

What Is A Landing Page?

A "destination URL" is the page that visitors will arrive on after they click on your ad. When used as a destination URL, a Landing page is a single page with much less content than regular website. Its content is closely related to exactly what the ad said (if you're running a dental practice, and one of your Google ads is for patients looking for veneers, the landing page they arrive on should be about veneers, not tooth whitening or exams). In short, a good landing page will give people exactly what they were looking for when they clicked on your ad.

Many ineffective advertisers will use their practice's main home page as the destination URL for their ads, no matter the subject of the ad. If a prospective patient lands on a general home page after clicking on a specific ad, they are more likely to leave the page instead of going through the hassle of finding the information themselves on your website. This is why using a landing page that directly relates to each ad in your campaign is the best way to turn a visitor into a patient.

What Is an Ad Relevancy Score?

In Google AdWords, every ad campaign has an Ad Relevancy score. This score is a numeric value that represents how Google interprets the relevance of 3 things: The keywords you're using to trigger your ads (the search terms that make your ad show up in results), the wording of your ads themselves and the content on your destination URL. Why does Google care? Because they want to make sure that users (the person using Google to search for something in this case) have a good experience so that they'll keep using Google in the future. If a user searches for "Manhattan Dentist" and see results for the ballet, they're probably going to switch to Bing next time.

In addition, if users click on an ad for the Ballet, but are taken to a page that's selling pogo sticks, they're going to feel tricked and confused. To simplify this process, Google created the Ad Relevancy score, and rewards advertisers who have consistency between their ads, keywords and destination URL content (advertisers with a good ad relevancy score will often pay less money per click than one of their competitors with a poor ad relevancy score). In addition, Google punishes advertisers with a poor Ad Relevancy score. Those advertisers can expect to pay more money every time someone clicks on their ad, and if the score is bad enough, Google will stop showing your ads all together.

How Do You Improve A Landing Page?

  • Be Specific: As mentioned, if someone clicks on an ad for a specific service, take them directly to a page related to that service, and not to a general page showing everything your practice offers (that's the job of your main website's homepage, which should NOT be used in Google or Facebook ads)
  • Be Clear: Offer clear and concise explanations of what your practice does and the products or services you offer. If you are going to request personal information from the visitor, make sure to explain why you are asking for it and what you will do with that information. Make sure you are accessible by having your contact information easy to find.
  • Make Navigation Easy: The product or service displayed in the ad should be the focus of the landing page, and a visitor should be able to request an appointment online AND see your office phone number from any place on the page, without having to scroll up or down. Organize and prioritize information on the landing page so that a visitor can easily navigate your whole page without having to go through a hassle of searching for information.
  • Be Speedy: Your landing page should load quickly no matter the device being used, if too slow, a user may give up and go to the next ad or search result.
  • Improving and continually A/B testing your landing pages is one of the most important things you can do when you're investing in Google or Facebook ads for your practice.

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