How PPC Can Boost Web Traffic for Hospitals
Pay-per-click (PPC) is one of the most widespread types of digital marketing available. As its name suggests, it is a form of advertising that relies on funding to succeed. A good PPC campaign is efficient and keeps costs low, though. Hospitals greatly benefit from paid ads because of how quickly they work to generate leads. Moreover, the primary function of PPC is to buy high-visibility positions on search engine results pages (SERPs). This guide outlines five ways PPC helps your hospital drive more website traffic. There is a lot to discuss, so get ready to take notes. Here we go!
1. Rank Higher on SERP with Paid Advertising
Before proceeding, here is a brief overview of how to manage a PPC campaign on search engines:
- You create a list of target keywords you want to trigger your ads and negative keywords you want your ads to avoid. For example, ‘Fort Wayne hospital’ is a good target keyword, while ‘Fort Wayne Medical Center’ is a good negative keyword.
- Use online tools to find a suitable cost-per-click (CPC) amount for each target word. You then set the CPC as your bid amount for each ad.
- The search engine’s advertising platform evaluates all the campaigns and chooses a bid winner to display for a given query.
As you can see, bids matter a lot for search ads. If you make better and higher bids, you improve your chances of showing up on search engine results pages (SERPs). More impressions (or views) on your ads can translate to more clickthroughs to your website. However, PPC is not just for clicks. Cost-per-action is another form of bidding available if you are more concerned about actions performed on your website.
In short, search ads are not only for attracting web traffic but also for uncovering quality leads that convert. Note your key performance indicators (KPIs) for each campaign you run and bid for them accordingly. Remember to plan carefully to ensure you reach your goals without spending unnecessarily high amounts without getting the desired results.
2. Help Locals Find Your Hospital or Clinic
Your area is full of leads you can convert into customers, especially for services that require people to come to them. They benefit significantly from tapping into their local market, whether it is their city, town, or neighboring area. One of the best reasons to use PPC marketing is targeting options, also called location targeting. It is where you restrict your ads to a particular geographic location.
Doing this benefits your campaign before it guarantees your ads reach potential customers. Ad services allow you to display ads within a specific city, radius, or zip code to reach your target market better. It is also possible to add multiple locations to your campaign to broaden your range. For example, a hospital based in Guthrie, Logan, in Oklahoma, has additional markets to tap into in Cedar Valley and Crescent. However, the same hospital wastes time and money by showing ads in Roger Mills.
3. Appear in Your Target Market’s Journey
Anyone who has been on the internet for a day can tell you that ads are not exclusive to SERPs. For your PPC campaign, this means all the more opportunity to appear in front of a potential patient. In any case, conversion takes time to happen. Ads rarely work the first time the person sees them, so preparing various ads to appear along the patient’s search journey is practical. Consider the following scenario:
- A potential patient, John, has been struggling with his appetite lately due to bouts of stomach pain. Luckily for him, he has time to look up possible causes online.
- He decides to try over-the-counter remedies he found while searching for his symptoms. Now, he is looking for a pharmacy that sells the brand he wants to use.
- He does this once or twice, following the same process with different remedies. His symptoms fail to subside, so he looks for a hospital with a gastroenterologist.
Every single point of his search journey to resolve his concerns is a chance to show your ads to John and convert him or convince him to visit your hospital. Here are some of the ways John would have seen your ads:
- Search ads on SERPs
- Display ads on social media and websites
- Local search ads on maps
The point is that paid advertising on social media, search engines, and websites increases your online presence. By using those channels, you also multiply the odds that patients like John will click on an ad for your website and book an appointment or directly visit your hospital.
4. Generate Quality Leads and Gain Patients
PPC is a form of targeted advertising, meaning your ads are made especially for your target market. Everything from their search terms to their online behavior helps you or your ad platform follow them on their online journey. In addition, you can control who sees your ads, whether through keywords, negative keywords, or location. With PPC, you can rest assured that whoever finds your ads wants or needs services like yours.
5. Follow Up on Leads Easier and Faster
An ad campaign is rarely perfect the first time you run it. You usually need to run tests and create different ads before you find the one that works best for you. You must constantly monitor, evaluate, and change your campaign as you see fit. Most of all, you must prepare a strategy to win over leads that did not convert. Depending on what interaction you set as your conversion goal, you can use different retargeting strategies to seal the deal.
For example, if the patient signed up for a health seminar but was a no-show, send them a marketing email with information and a registration link when your next seminar comes up. Digital Authority Partners said that one disadvantage to this strategy is that some healthcare-related websites prohibit retargeting or remarketing tactics. Keep this in mind when creating a PPC strategy to avoid wasting leads and funds.
PPC advertising is one of the best and fastest ways to increase website traffic and drive engagement for your hospital’s website. Search ads, display ads, and social media ads are all viable options to connect with potential patients along their online search journey. Gain the benefits mentioned in this article and start your own PPC campaign.