When it comes to search engine optimisation and ranking well on Google, most companies go after organic page one listings, not least because they’re free. However, organic rankings take time, they’re not effective immediately and they’re very competitive, with larger websites often beating the smaller guys to the top spots.

Google Adwords or Pay Per Click (PPC) is the alternative and has two main benefits. Firstly, it allows you to produce targeted adverts to attract the new patients you want and, secondly, it can be used effectively to get your website to the top of Google page one.

Many people think that Google PPC is a big-budget tool but this isn’t the case. PPC can work for any budget, making it ideal for smaller companies and short-term offers when you need immediate rankings. You just need to do your homework first. A successful PPC campaign is all about the quality of the advert, the target keywords, and the design of the landing page visitors are taken to once they’ve clicked on the advert.

If you ensure that the adverts you are creating are content rich with the information that you want your specific target audience to see, it’s probable that your advert will appear at the top of Google and receive impressions (number of times the advert is displayed) and clicks.

To maintain a high standard of advertising reputation, Google is very strict on the content that can be used in adverts and also favours those campaigns that have more quality targeted keywords and content. This is how even the smallest of budgets can rival the big players. The key is to maximise your click through rate (CTR), so that you convert as many of these warm leads into sales as possible.

To do this, we cannot emphasise enough the importance of a well-designed and tested landing page. This is the first page and introduction to your brand that potential new patients will see, so it needs to make the right impression fast.

Offers and information shown in the adverts should be clear and concise on the landing page. Other popular additions to landing pages are patient testimonials and ‘before and after’ images as this ‘social proof’ gives visitors peace of mind and confidence in the practice.

Most importantly, you should make it easy for visitors to contact the practice directly from the landing page. Using a telephone tracking number specific to the landing page, in addition to a simple contact form, will allow you to record how many call enquiries have been generated from the campaign. While companies like Yell offer this service, the costs can be prohibitive but there are more affordable alternatives.

Because you only pay for clicks rather than impressions, a PPC ad is a great way of advertising your practice at a very low cost. It’s strategically and psychologically effective too. When people run a search for your website and see it listed on Google page one – especially if you appear in the PPC and organic listings -, they see you as an established and trusted practice, one that is larger than its competitors and a ‘go-to’ authority in your field.

As we can see, Google Adword’s services have many advantages, from building consumer confidence to instantly getting a top position. Unlike standard SEO, a page one position is almost guaranteed with PPC, and, unlike natural results, which can take weeks or months, PPC delivers instant results.

With the right know-how, Google Adwords or PPC services can be an effective option for any budget.

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