If you are ready to get your veterinary website to the top of page one on Google overnight, pay-per-click advertising is the way to do it. If you want to promote your business to thousands of highly targeted viewers on Facebook without needing a single “Like” on your business page first, Pay Per Click is for you. Lastly, if you want an extremely accurate idea of your cost per lead and your return on investment (ROI), look no further than PPC advertising.
What is Pay Per Click (PPC)?
Unlike veterinary SEO, which aims to increase your organic rankings, pay-per-click (PPC) advertising can put you in front of a large audience overnight if you are willing to pay for it. On major search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing, there are several spots at the top of the page reserved for paid ads. Once your ads have been submitted, they can appear within minutes. How’s that for fast results! Advertisers bid on keyword phrases, like “Raleigh Animal Hospitals,” and every time a search is conducted, a mini auction happens in real time. Your ad’s rank and placement on the page are determined by a combination of your maximum bid and your ad’s quality score. You only get charged when your ad is clicked.
You can also do PPC advertising on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. Ads on these platforms are not triggered by searches, rather they show up in users’ activity feeds based on the advertiser’s chosen targeting criteria. Every user on these networks is associated with a thorough profile, because everyone has logged in and voluntarily submitted this information. When the network knows everything about its users, it allows advertisers to target users based on a robust variety of criteria, such as age, gender, interests, home ownership, job description, or a gazillion other things. On social media, you can work long and hard to gain your own following, or you can take the shortcut and pay to jump in front of a large audience.
How Much Does Each Click on My Ad Cost?
For search (text) ads, the amount you pay for each click depends largely on your competition, and it can vary greatly from industry to industry and location to location. If a lot of veterinary practices in the area are bidding on veterinary related keywords and vying for the top spot, the cost per click for those keywords will be driven up as competitors try to outbid each other. However, the amount of your bid is the not the only factor that determines your ad’s position on the page.
It is actually possible for your animal hospital’s ad to show up higher on the page with a lower bid than your competitors. An ad with a high quality score and a lower bid can be charged less per click than an ad with a higher bid and a low quality score. Without delving too deeply into the intricacies of what exactly quality score is, let’s just say it has a lot to do with click through rate. Google only gets paid when people click on the paid ads, and not the organic results. An ad with a high bid that never gets clicked on still doesn’t make Google any money. So if you can write a really compelling ad for your veterinary practice that garners a lot of clicks, Google will reward your ad with a high quality score. This helps you move up higher on the page while paying less.
Writing Compelling Text Ads for Your Veterinary Practice
Now that we understand that there is a direct relationship between click-through rate and quality score, how do we get people to click on your ads? Well, a good imagination isn’t enough. It is necessary to take a more scientific approach. Nobody knows for sure what will grab people’s attention, but there are some basic guidelines to adhere to that provide a good place to start.
- Specificity is king. There is nothing more important than having the message of your ad specifically match what the user just searched for. If someone Googles “dental care for Labrador retrievers,” that is exactly what they are looking for, and it is the only thing they are looking for. So if your ad shows up with the headline “Raleigh Veterinary Services,” that really doesn’t answer the question of whether or not you offer dental care for Labrador retrievers. This seems intuitively obvious, but when bidding on a multitude of keyword combinations, your ad can show up for searches you may not have anticipated. Writing very specific ad copy for every potential circumstance your ad may be shown is very time-consuming and takes a lot of planning.
- Don’t be too clever. Internet searching happens in an instant, with users’ eyes darting around the page very quickly. The instant after someone Google’s “vets in Raleigh,” they are served an entire page worth of paid ads, local (map) listings, and organic listings. Most likely, their decision of where to click next will be made in a couple of seconds. There’s no time for them to understand a clever play on words. Do you offer what the person is looking for or not? That is the only story your ad has the time to tell.
- Test, test, and test again. The only way to figure out which ads will perform the best is to test them out. Write multiple ads, run them for a period of time, and see which ones perform the best. At this point, it is very important to leave your opinions at the door. If one ad outperforms another, that one is better, period. It doesn’t matter if you don’t understand why. That is the scientific approach. The stats are the only thing that determine the winners, not your gut feeling.
Remarketing to People Who Have Visited Your Veterinary Website
It’s funny how people’s opinions on remarketing change based on what side of the equation they are on. Ask the average person “What do you think about those ads that follow you around after you go to certain websites?” A fairly common response might be that they are kinda creepy and/or annoying. On the other hand, when you are the advertiser, seeing a remarketing ad in action is the coolest thing ever. Remarketing ads are great because you are showing your message to a group of people who have already explicitly shown interest in what you have to offer.
With most display advertising, it is more of a shotgun approach, and you are plastering your ad everywhere you possibly can in hopes that someone may find it interesting. The other thing that is great about remarketing ads is that they don’t cost you anything unless they are clicked on again. So a person goes to your animal hospital website and leaves. They see your ad fifteen times in the next two weeks, which drives them to pick up the phone and call you. In that scenario, remarketing has cost you nothing. If they click instead of call, you’ll be charged for the click, but how much more likely is this person to convert to a customer on their second trip back? They’ve already shown interest twice!
Veterinary Clinic Remarketing: How Does it Work?
When you see it happen, remarketing has the aura of magic around it, but it is really fairy simple how it works. First, a tracking code is placed on your site. Then, when a visitor comes to your site, it places a cookie on their browser that essentially serves to remember that they were there. Your ads can then “follow” this person around as they visit other sites. That is remarketing in a nutshell. You can show remarketing ads on Facebook as well.
As with search ads, specificity is also very important with remarketing ads. What a lot of novice advertisers will do is simply serve the same ads to anyone who has visited any page on their site. This approach can still be effective, but you can achieve even better results by being more specific. For instance, if someone navigated to a page on your site about flea treatments for long haired cat breeds, you can show them ads specifically about that. The message is much more tailored to the individual, and much more likely to effectively catch their interest.
PPC for Veterinarians: Measuring Return on Investment (ROI)
One of the greatest benefits of pay per click marketing is the ability to get a very clear understanding of how well it is working. With traditional media, it can be difficult to accurately attribute sales and/or leads to a particular campaign. With PPC advertising, you can get much more granular data. This is accomplished with conversion tracking, and it uses a similar kind of tracking mechanism as remarketing.
Anytime a visitor takes a desired action on your animal hospital website, that action is trackable. If a visitor fills out contact or registration form, it can be tracked as a “conversion.” You can define your own conversion actions, but basically a conversion occurs when someone has “converted” from an anonymous visitor into a contact. They have converted by calling you or giving you their contact info via a website form.
The most important statistic we will gather from tracking conversions is your “cost per conversion,” or cost per lead. To find your cost per lead, we simply take your total amount spent and divide it by your total number of leads. So, for instance, if you spent $2000, and got 40 leads, your cost per lead would be $50. We still need more info, because by itself the figure of $50 per lead isn’t necessarily good or bad. It depends on what percentage of leads you convert into customers, and it depends on the average lifetime value of a customer. For an animal hospital or veterinarian, it is important to not just compare your cost per lead to the price of a visit. These are made up numbers, but if it cost you $100 to acquire the customer and the service they bought was $100, you didn’t break even. Hopefully this is a long term customer. If this person comes back every year for a decade, you actually spent $100 to make $1000.
TheeDesign’s Veterinary PPC Management Services Include:
- Paid Search Advertising
- PPC Management
- AdWords Campaign Creation
- Bing Campaign Creation
- Call Tracking
- Aggressive Bid Strategy
- Landing Page Optimization
- Ad Copywriting
- AdWords Remarketing
- Facebook Remarketing
- A/B Testing
- Conversion Tracking
- Demographic Targeting
- Keyword Monitoring
- Industry Analysis
Google AdWords for Veterinary Practices
TheeDesign is a Premier Google Partner — meaning that we’ve achieved and maintained a strict level of Google’s best practices and recommended techniques. Every one of our in-house experts are also AdWords certified, so you can rest assured your animal hospital PPC campaigns are in good hands, and the effectiveness of your advertising budget is maximized.
Bing Ads for Veterinary Practices
Pay per click advertising on Bing is very similar to Google AdWords. Bing obviously has a much smaller market share than Google, so many advertisers overlook it. Many advertisers don’t bother to advertise their animal hospital on Bing, and this usually means there is less competition. Less competition usually means a lower cost per click. You may not think anyone uses Bing, but it is the default search engine on many electronic devices out of the box.
Paid Social Media Ads
Building up a large following on social media can be really challenging if you are not a celebrity. Even if your animal hospital’s Facebook page does manage to rack up a thousand likes, Facebook’s updated algorithm is still very unlikely to show your posts to your audience unless you pay for it. TheeDesign’s paid search specialists can help you identify and target your ideal audience, and deliver relevant messages to them to turn them into paying customers.
Remarketing Ads for Animal Hospitals
Everyone knows that Pepsi exists, right? So why do they still spend millions of dollars on advertising? It doesn’t seem like it really works, but that last commercial you saw before you picked up that 12 pack of Pepsi may very well have been the deciding factor when you were in the grocery isle. Remarketing works the same way, on a subconscious level. It helps keep your vet clinic on visitors’ minds after they have left your site. The majority of your visitors will not make a decision to do business with you on their first visit. They need to think it over. A week later when your visitor is ready to take action, will it be your animal hospital that they remember?
Benefits of TheeDesign Managing your Veterinary PPC Campaigns
Precise Audience Targeting
Target your audience with laserlike precision and tailor campaigns to specific segments
Capture Inbound Leads That Convert
Get highly qualified traffic based on specific search terms and capture warm leads.
Boost Your Position on Search Results
Outfox your competitors and gain the perceived endorsement that comes with a high position on the page.
Reduce CPA & Maximize ROI
Reduce your cost per acquisition (CPA), increase your revenue, and maximize ROI