Top 3 Reasons Your Google Ads Are Underperforming

If you’re anything like Dr. Henderson, then getting more leads on a consistent basis is likely one of your top priorities. How you go about it depends largely on the marketing strategy you have chosen to promote your dental practice. 

Dr. Henderson’s marketing strategy had three major components: a patient referral program, an active Facebook page, and a Google Ads campaign where he promoted his dental implants treatment area.

On the surface, his Google Ads campaign was a success. It was meeting his expectations. He was getting a decent number of leads every month and his ROI was great.

In reality, though, it was underperforming. There were quite a few problems with his campaign, some of which were easy to pin down just by looking at the ads themselves, while others were much harder to identify.

Much like Dr. Henderson, most dentists are oblivious to the fact that their Google Ads campaigns are just not delivering to their fullest potential. And even though the same could be said about their Facebook Ads Campaigns, we’ll just focus on Google Ads for now.

We’ve analyzed hundreds of dentists’ ad campaigns and we’ve found that most of them are making noticeable mistakes that are negatively impacting their bottom line in two ways: dentists are spending more than they should for every lead they are getting, and they’re also missing out on potential leads.

Here are the 3 most common mistakes that dentists are making in their Google Ads campaigns and what to do about them:

Dentixtry - Google Ads For Dentists - Using Your Home Page As A Landing Page

1. You're Not Using A Dedicated Landing Page

The page you’re directing your PPC traffic to is crucial to your campaign’s success, and it shouldn’t be your home page. Instead, you should be sending all ad clickers to a dedicated landing page, one that’s been designed with one purpose in mind: to convert your visitors into leads for your dental practice.

Your website’s home page basically serves one purpose: it is an important source of information for visitors about your practice, your team, and the services you provide. Even if you have strategically placed Call-To-Actions (CTA) throughout your home page on your header, your hero section, your footer section, and everywhere in between, your home page will not be a match for a landing page that’s been specifically designed to take your visitors by the hand to take the action you’re expecting of them.

It all begins when people start a Google search. They are searching for a solution to their problems. That’s why when they google “Invisalign dentist near me” they’re expecting to find just that: an Invisalign dentist nearby. Not a car insurance provider, nor a weightloss program.

Google does an excellent job at delivering exactly what their users want, and thus shows them all the pages that match their search criteria in order or relevance.

Why You Shouldn't Direct Your PPC Traffic To Your Home Page

So what’s the problem with sending your Invisalign ad clickers to your website’s home page? There’s just too much going on there that’s distracting your visitors.

You worked hard on your ad to attract people to your offer, you’re paying Google to feature your ad, but instead of sending them to a page that gives them more specific information about it, they land on a page that’s making it harder for them to make an informed decision about their Invisalign inquiry.

Sure, what they need is probably right there on your home page in front of them. They only have to look for the menu, navigate to your Services page, and then click on your Invisalign page. You’re asking them to do too much.

Over 45% of the ad campaigns we’ve analyzed are sending traffic from their Google Ads directly to their website’s home page. As a result, their conversion is low and their Cost-Per-Lead is higher than it should be.

If you’re currently using your home page as the destination page for your ad clickers, you must fix it as soon as possible. Set up a dedicated landing page to direct your PPC traffic instead.

The Problem: You're Using Your Home Page As Your Landing Page

Your website's home page is packed full of valuable information about your dental practice. The problem with using it to send your PPC clickers is that you're making them lose momentum. They are pumped up looking for the solution to their problem but what they find instead is more information than they are willing to process. They get distracted and they leave.

The Solution: Send Your Ad-Clickers To a Dedicated Landing Page

A dedicated landing page is a controlled environment where you double down on your offer and its benefits, briefly introduce your team, and highlight your five-star patient testimonials, among other things, to encourage your PPC visitors to set up and appointment with you. It's sprinkled with CTAs and, most importantly, devoid of any distractions.

Dentixtry - Google Ads For Dentists - Using Inner Pages as Landing Page

2. You're Using The Wrong Type Of Landing Page

Now, setting up a dedicated landing page for your Google Ads campaign is definitely a step forward but to make sure it is in the right direction, the landing page has to be designed in such a way that makes it easy for your visitors to take the next step and call your office to set up an appointment with you.

To be clear, and following on our previous example, you don’t just send people googling “Invisalign dentist near me” to your website’s Invisalign page just so they can get more info about your service offering and maybe, just maybe, reach out for the phone and call you.

Your website’s inner pages, even if we’re talking about the page for the specific treatment area you’re promoting on Google Ads, will most likely affect your campaign performance for the same reasons your home page does: there are still too many distractions pulling your visitor away from your offer.

This might sound counterintuitive but when you send your ad clickers to one of your website’s inner pages, things like your navigation menu, your social media links, your footer info, and your smile gallery links could actually do more harm than good to your ad campaign.

Why You Shouldn't Direct Your PPC Traffic To Your Inner Pages

Because even though ad clickers will get to a page where they will be able to find a solution to their problem, they will be easily distracted by all the other info that’s available to them only a click away.

They might want to check your Facebook page and once there they go down the rabbit hole, forget what they were doing in the first place, and don’t come back to your site to finish what they had started. This impacts your landing page’s attention ratio, which in turn affects your campaign’s score in the eyes of Google and drives your ad cost up.

Sure, you’ll still get leads, but not as many as you’d get if you’d be sending your visitors to a dedicated landing page, purposely built to have your visitors take one and only one action: to contact your office to set up an appointment.

About a third of the ad campaigns that we’ve analyzed are guilty of this. They are sending their ad clickers to inner pages within their websites, that haven’t been built for that purpose. We’ve even seen some instances where the destination page is their Contact Us page. Their campaign metrics may be slightly better than if they’d send their ad traffic to their home page, but they’d still be wasting their money and missing out on new leads.

If you’re sending your PPC traffic to an inner page on your website, we strongly advise you to stop doing it immediately. Send your PPC traffic to a dedicated landing page instead. 

The Problem: You're Using The Wrong Type Of Landing Page

It really matters where you're sending your PPC traffic to. Your website's inner pages have been designed to inform your visitors about your team, your services, your location, and more. You can't expect them to excel at converting a high number of ad-clickers into leads.

The Solution: Send Your Ad-Clickers To a Dedicated Landing Page

A dedicated landing page is a controlled environment where you double down on your offer and its benefits, briefly introduce your team, and highlight your five-star patient testimonials, among other things, to encourage your PPC visitors to set up and appointment with you. It's sprinkled with CTAs and, most importantly, devoid of any distractions.

Dentixtry - Google Ads For Dentists - Not Doing AB Testing

3. You're Not A/B Testing

If you’re not familiar with A/B testing, then you’re probably not doing any of it on your Google Ads campaign. Just to be sure, we suggest you check with your ads manager and ask them whether they’re implementing A/B testing in your campaign.

A/B testing is a marketing tactic that compares two versions of something to find out which performs better. It’s a fantastic way to constantly improve the moving parts of your Google Ads campaign so that your overall key metrics get better over time.

Though you can A/B test almost anything in your campaign, you should focus on two key areas: your ads and your landing page.

Within your ads, it’s possible to test the headline, the body text, the link, and the keywords the ad displays for. With regards to your landing page, you can pretty much test anything there, though we suggest you start with the headline, the offer, the image, and the CTA.

Make sure you only test one thing at a time, so you can identify what variable is impacting your campaign performance. For example, you can test your ad’s headline and your landing page’s CTA, since you are testing two different parts within your ad campaign. But you should not test your ad headline and link at the same time.

You should also start testing as soon and as often as possible. It’s a continuous process that yields amazing results.

Why You Should Constantly A/B Test Your Ad Funnel

Think about it. You start with a landing page that looks perfect, but you don’t know for sure. What can you do? You begin by testing a variation of the headline. With enough data, you find that the original landing page converts better than the variation. So you keep it.

You move on and test the offer. Soon you realize the original offer lags behind the variation. So you toss the former and keep the latter. You go back to testing a different variation of your landing page's headline and this time the variation beats the control. You keep the best headline. And it goes on.

Your goal is to increase the number of conversions, that is, the number of people visiting your page who have scheduled an appointment with you. Every minor improvement counts.

We have found that only a small percentage of dentists running Google Ads are doing any sort of A/B testing in their ad campaigns. Sadly, the majority of dentists who are not A/B testing are missing out on a wonderful opportunity to optimize their campaign and surpass their goals.

The Problem: You're Not Continually Improving Your Ad Funnel

It's hard to get things perfect the first time. There's always room for improvement, particularly when you have just gotten started. Sadly, most people set up their ad funnel (ad + offer + landing page), don't do anything to make it better over time, and expect amazing results. In fact, the opposite may happen if you leave your ad funnel untouched: your results deteriorate as time passes by.

The Solution: A/B Test Your Ad Funnel Early And Often

Minimize your risks and maximize your gains by implementing A/B Testing on your ad funnel. Gather valuable insights with regards to the different variables that have a positive impact on your Google Ads campaign and make the necessary adjustments that will allow you to run a killer campaign, with a great ROI.

Dentixtry - Google Ads For Dentists - Your Takeaway
Your Takeaway

While we’ve identified more problem areas after analyzing hundreds of dentists’ PPC campaigns, we believe these three that we have mentioned above are a good place for you to start evaluating your campaign.

If you find that you’re not using a dedicated landing page, or that you’re not A/B testing, then it is highly likely that there are more potential problems lurking around, affecting your campaign performance without you even knowing, making you waste money that you shouldn’t.

Remember Dr. Henderson? At the time we contacted him, he was running a dental implants campaign, sending ad-clickers to the corresponding service page within his website. His conversion rate was hovering around 2,57% and his cost per lead was $92.37.

Soon after, we began working on his Google Ads and changed many things. We set up one of our Smart Landing Pages, started A/B testing as soon as the ads were running, and added call-tracking and click fraud prevention, among other things.

Results improved gradually and around the 90-day mark, when the campaign reached maturity, his conversion rate had almost quadrupled to 9,31% and his cost per lead had decreased to $58.71.

If you are making any of these mistakes in your Google Ads campaign and are not sure what to do to address them, reach out to us.

Our team has been successfully helping dentists like you to ace their Google Ads for the last few years. We've been instrumental in their practices' growth, by making it possible for dentists to attract a predictable number of leads to their doors every month while taking good care of their advertising budget.

Are you getting everything you expected, and then some more, from your Google Ads campaign?

With Dentixtry you will have a team of Google Ads experts running your PPC campaigns, doing everything you need to start welcoming new patients to your dental practice predictably and consistently.

Our Dental Patient Accelerator has been designed to give you results from the start. It strengthens your practice’s online foundation, while making sure that you see more new patients and that your existing patients come back more often.

Click the button below to learn how your Dental Practice can dominate your competition.

Don't know where to start?

See how you can take your Dental Practice to new heights!

You may also like

Should You Do Google Ads Or SEO For Your Dental Practice?

Should You Do Google Ads Or SEO For Your Dental Practice?

How A Dental Practice Added $95,403 To Their Monthly Revenue

How A Dental Practice Added $95,403 To Their Monthly Revenue

Practicing Dentistry During COVID-19

Practicing Dentistry During COVID-19

5 Tips To Increase Website Conversion Rates

5 Tips To Increase Website Conversion Rates

Switch On Your Dental Practice's Growth-Mode

Discover the best online marketing strategy and see how we help you get a steady flow of new patients coming to your doorstep.