Fanny Barrientos 2

Fanny Barrientos is a digital marketing expert at ProSites.

Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising can quickly attract more potential dental patients to your website. Tools like Google AdWords and Bing Ads help dentists appear on the top of search results, but they only pay when a searcher clicks the ad (instead of paying each time the ad is shown).

However, PPC can quickly become ineffective when not executed correctly – and if common mistakes are made, dental practices risk spending a lot of money without attracting new patients like they had hoped.

Below are the top costly and common mistakes to avoid when it comes to dental pay-per-click ads:

Mistake #1: Wasting precious ad copy real estate.

PPC ads have character limits which forces the message to be brief.

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Therefore, instead of repeating the same exact message in the headline (blue text) and description (gray text), have the copy compliment and build off one another to provide more information.

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Mistake #2: Mispellings [Sic].

Misspelling ad copy can signal carelessness to potential patients (even if it’s not true!) which may skew them away from your practice. Make sure to thoroughly review your ads and run a spell check to ensure correct spelling and grammar. is a helpful tool to check all of your communications, including ad copy.

Mistake #3: Bidding on keywords for services you don’t offer.

Targeting every single dental keyword can be tempting, but it won’t be an effective use of your budget because those visitors are not likely to convert into patients. Instead, prioritize targeting keywords for services that you do offer and create the most revenue for your practice (i.e. veneers, replacing amalgam fillings with composite ones, etc.).

Mistake #4: Sending visitors to your homepage or contact page.

While this may seem like a good idea, it may actually hurt your conversion rate (the number of people who click your ad, and then ultimately contact your practice). Why? Visitors need to get the information they initially searched for, immediately. If they click an ad about teeth whitening, but land on a contact page with no information about that service, they won’t be pleased. Instead, send visitors to a page that correlates with the PPC ads you are running. Be sure these landing pages include information about the service and provide a strong call-to-action near the top and bottom of the page.

Mistake #5: Failing to split-test your ad text.

Part of improving your ROI on PPC campaigns requires ad copy testing. By testing your ads, you can learn which set(s) of ad copy resonates most with searchers and you can continually improve your ads. For example, you can test if showing a price in ad copy is more effective than not:

Test A

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Test B

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By testing the headlines only (“teeth whitening special” vs. “$99 teeth whitening”) you will be able to track the difference in results directly back to the change of headline. (If you change more than one part of the ad, it would be hard to pinpoint the exact reason one ad outperformed the other.) After a period of time, you’ll see that one of the ads outperforms the other – from there, use the winning headline and try testing something different (like the description).

Mistake #6: Not using negative keywords.

Negative keywords are keywords that you do not want your ads to appear, such as “free cleanings.” By setting negative keywords, you limit unwanted clicks and traffic which saves money and helps you maximize your budget.

By using ad copy real estate wisely, checking spelling and grammar, monitoring keywords, testing, and creating landing pages are all ways to get more from your PPC budget, improve your return on investment, and win new patients quickly online.

To learn how ProSites can help you attract qualified search traffic quickly, visit or call (888) 932-3644 to speak to an Internet Marketing Advisor.