Before you start your next digital campaign, no matter what, where, or how you are advertising, start by building a customized landing page.
Digital advertising is all about conversions. You send traffic to your website through an ad campaign and you want as many of those people as possible to complete your conversion action. In healthcare, this usually means calling the practice or sending an email via a contact form to make an appointment or set up a consultation.
Given a fixed ad budget, there are two things that a digital marketer can do to improve the number of conversions:
- Improve the targeting on the ad campaign. The more relevant your ads are to the audience, the higher your click-through-rate (CTR) will be. (CTR is the percentage of the time that your ad is clicked out of the total number of times it is displayed.) This could include methods such as tightening up your target keywords for a search campaign or improving the messaging on an ad to ensure that it speaks to the right audience. However, there is a problem with this approach. While it is helpful overall and should never be neglected, extra clicks will exhaust your budget faster. So you’ll receive more conversions than with a less-targeted campaign, but you will hit the budget ceiling quickly and the conversions will stop flowing.
- Improve the landing page experience. If you create a quality, relevant landing page for your campaign, your traffic will convert at a higher rate. You won’t have to increase your budget at all. Simply doing a better job of catering to the incoming traffic, you will significantly increase your return on ad spend.
Digital marketers will often fall into the trap of thinking that normal website content is good enough to serve as a landing page for an ad campaign. While there are always exceptions, it can be said that a customized landing page will almost always outperform a regular content page on a website. To further illustrate this point, let’s take a look at a situation that I recently dealt with for a client.
A quick example…
We had a page on a certain client’s website that we had recently optimized for search. It was a comprehensive page about a specific medical condition that our client treated. It ranked high on search engines for relevant keywords and performed well with the organic traffic coming from those search engines. For some reason, however, the page did not perform half as well with our paid traffic. What caused this difference between the performance of paid traffic and organic traffic?
We discovered the issue by really thinking about the people who were landing on the page and whether or not the page was relevant for them. The keywords that we were targeting for the paid traffic indicated that the person was ready to make an appointment (e.g., doctor near me or need a doctor). Our page was full of information about the condition, everything from causes to symptoms to treatments, etc., which sounds great, but it was actually more relevant for people who were still in their research phase, just learning about the condition. The people who were ready to make an appointment wanted more information about the doctor and how to get in touch, which was not featured on the page.
With those insights, we constructed a separate landing page and ran an A/B test with our paid search campaign traffic. Sure enough, our conversions shot up significantly on the traffic directed to our new landing page and stayed about the same on the existing page.
Best Practices for Healthcare Landing Pages
Every campaign is different. Even within campaigns, there are often varying audience segments that you are trying to convert. That said, there are a few things that every landing page needs to have:
- Relevance. Your first goal with any landing page is to make it relevant for incoming traffic. You want to provide people coming to your landing page with the experience that they are seeking. Your content on the page needs to be created with this in mind.
- A strong headline. Your page should begin with a succinct statement that verifies to the incoming traffic that they are in the right place.
- A concise explanation. You need to get your point across quickly and in an easily digestible way. Most people won’t stick around long enough to read paragraphs of information on your product or service. You need to be able to sum it all up in a few bullet points.
- The value proposition. Now that you’ve effectively explained your product or service, what sets it apart from your competition? Again, this needs to be communicated with as few words as possible.
- The call-to-action. The whole point of a landing page is conversions. Clearly communicate what conversion action you want your incoming traffic to perform.
- Trust signals. Are you board certified? Have you won any awards worth mentioning? Maybe you have a testimonial video from a former patient. In healthcare, you need to communicate trust. Potential patients want to put their personal health in the hands of someone they feel confident in.
- Clean, consistent design. Keep your design simple on landing pages. You don’t want your traffic to get distracted with too many bells and whistles instead of moving through the page to the conversion action. Also, especially when it comes to display ads, make sure that the imagery you are using in your ad goes with the design of the landing page. The last thing you want is for people to think they are in the wrong place because of a different color scheme.
- Logical flow of information. Your content should all be laid out in a way that makes sense to the user. Put yourself in the shoes of your prospective patient navigating through the page. Does the layout make sense? Does the content flow together? Would you convert?
One last piece of advise: A/B test as much as possible. Maybe people prefer filling out a contact form on the left side of the page more than the right side. That simple change might get you more patients. You will never know if you don’t try.