Ultimate Guide to Campaign Structure for Dental Google Ads Campaigns
Creating a professional Google Ads account requires a meticulous approach, that can be mastered by anyone who spends enough time learning about all the components that make up the Google Ads account.
Whenever someone asks me to audit their Google Ads campaigns it is quite easy for me to tell whether their account has been setup by an amateur or a true professional.
Building out a professional Google Ads account is not as difficult as it may seem. All you need is a piece of paper, a pencil or a pen and a clear understanding of what it is you want to advertise for.
By following the best practices to establish a clear account structure, you can avoid major mistakes and keep your account easy to manage at all times.
In this blog you will learn about the following topics:
1. The strategy behind the account structure
2. What parts the account is made up of
3. How to setup a Google Ads campaign for the search network.
Decide which structure you want to stick to:
Generally, there are 3 approaches that I recommend to structure your Google Ads account:
Based on the structure of your website
Based on the products / services that you offer
Based on locations
Account structure based on the website structure:
This approach is most suited to absolute beginners, as the Google Ads account setup should be a simple mirror image of your website’s structure.
Simply go to your website, click on the Services or Treatments drop-down menu and note down all services that your dental practice offers to patients. Then go ahead and create a campaign for each of these services within your Google Ads account.
From my experience most dental websites do not have detailed landing pages for each procedure, but rather make use of broad category landing pages such as the following:
Account structure based on products or services
This is the approach that I personally use for most of my campaign build outs, as it allows me to create very detailed campaigns that are themed around specific services or rather dental procedures.
By using this type of account structure, you can cover all types of services or procedures that your dental practice offers, even if your website may not (yet) include these services.
Let’s say your dental website is well built and has detailed landing pages for all services that are on offer. Instead of a broad category such as Cosmetic dentistry we could now create campaigns for:
Account structure based on locations
The majority of dental practices work and function as a local business, e.g. most of the patients of a typical dental practice are located within a radius of 10-15 miles.
However, there are cases where dental practices might want to make use of a location-based campaign structure:
Franchise – The most obvious reason to use multiple locations within Google Ads would be for a dental franchise that has multiple offices across the country. In order to manage the campaigns effectively for each location the Google Ads account manager should create duplicate campaigns for each location as this makes it easy to compare the performance and cost per acquisition across different locations.
Dental tourism – When a dental practice is able to offer innovative treatments or prices that are very competitive with other nearby cities or countries, a dental practice owner may decide to start targeting customers abroad in order to win big restoration or dental implant cases. The best thing to do in such cases is to again create duplicate campaigns for each targeted location.
What are the parts of a Google Ads account structure?
On the account level, account managers can setup the time zone of their Google Ads account as well as the currency they want to use for payments and reporting. Be careful to choose the right settings, as you will be able to choose the time-zone setting only once. If you have made a mistake here, your best choice will be to create a new account.
On the campaign level, account managers can setup the main settings of the planned campaigns such as daily budget, ad network, location and run dates. A Google Ads campaign is a collection of one or more ad groups. Each ad group can contain one or more keywords you want to advertise on, as well as one or more ads to show whenever your keyword is searched for on Google.
On the ad group level, account managers can setup the default bids, ads, site links & ad extensions and landing pages. As a rule of thumb, I recommend keeping ad groups tight, with 10-20 keywords at most per ad group. This allows account managers to craft targeted ads and send website traffic to the most relevant landing page on your website.
Most amateurs make the mistake to throw many various keywords into one ad group. This causes the ad group to become very broad. The loss of clear focus will in turn cause some of the inserted keywords to be totally unrelated to the associated ads or landing pages that you show to potential searchers.
Each ad group contains one or more ads that will be shown in Google’s search results. There are limits to what you can put in every line of text in your ad: 3 headlines of 30 characters and two descriptions of 90 characters.
Furthermore, you can also change how your ad’s landing page is shown in the ad by editing the page path. This can help your ad stand out from the crowd and make your landing page appear as a targeted and human-readable web address.
You should create multiple ads per ad group, so that Google can automatically rotate them whenever your keywords trigger an ad. Google learns which ad is the most effective in getting clicks, and will start to show this ad more often.
After a while you can see the best performing ads in each ad group and use these as a basis for further improvements to your ads to get even more clicks.
On the keyword level, account managers can specify the keywords they wish to target in a given ad group as well as the keyword match types they want to use and custom keyword bids.
If you want to find out more about how to choose the best keywords for your dental Google Ads campaigns read this blog which covers the topic in great detail.
It is best practice to include 3 different ads in each ad group so that Google can serve each to the people who are searching for the dental services that you are advertising. Over time you will notice which messaging works best in evoking interest, e.g. which ad has the highest click-through rate to your site.
One fairly new feature that has been introduced throughout 2018 is called responsive search ads, here you basically create a dynamic ad with bunch of differing headlines and descriptions.
Google will use its algorithm to test various combinations of headlines and descriptions and overtime find the best performer that most people respond to.
It is best to have at least 2 standard text ads besides a responsive text ad, in order to avoid any downtime.
If you want to find out more about how to write great ads for dental Google Ads campaigns read this blog which covers the topic in great detail.
Guide: How to setup a Google Ads Campaign
Select the campaign goal:
While you could go ahead to select one of the following campaign goals, I personally prefer to use the “Create a campaign without a goal’s guidance” as this gives me more control to manually manage the campaign. If you want Google to assist you in the setup you may choose “Leads” or “Website traffic”.
Select the campaign type:
When you click on the big blue + sign in the Campaigns tab within your Google Ads interface you will be presented with the following screen. Select “Search“
Name your campaign and uncheck the search partners + Display Network:
Google’s standard settings are usually one of the biggest cause of wasted money in terms of advertising credit.
When you want to run traditional search ads, turn off the search partner network as well as the display network. This way your ads will only show on Google when someone types in keywords that trigger one of your ads.
Additional settings that should be specified carefully:
Choose the geographic area where you want your ads to be shown.
Choose the languages spoken in the targeted geographic areas.
Enter the daily budget of your campaign. The daily budget times 30.4 will equal your monthly budget. If you set your daily budget to 50 then your monthly budget is equal to 1520.
While Google may overspend your daily budget, it will not surpass the monthly budget. In the rare case that Google should spend for example 1600 it will reimburse the extra 80 to you and deliver those clicks free of charge, as your maximum monthly budget was set to 1520.
Here you should select what you want to focus on in your Google Ads campaign. Tell Google whether you want to focus on Clicks or Conversions. For amateurs one of these choices will be the best bet.
I personally make use of manual settings and Manual CPC, as this bidding type gives me the biggest freedom to control all parts of the campaign to generate the best possible performance.
Start and End dates:
If you are running a seasonal offer make sure to enter a start and end date to ensure that your seasonal offers will stop showing when the offer is no longer active. If you have a summer special valid up to August 31st you should obviously enter the end date August 31st.
For general ongoing campaigns you should leave the end date field empty to ensure that your ads will be showing as long you are investing into Google Ads to promote your dental practice.
Make sure to include all relevant ad extensions such as call extensions, location extensions, callouts, structured snippets, sitelink extensions and promotion extensions.
If you want to find out more about ad extensions for dental google ads campaigns read this blog which covers the topic in great detail.
Here you should choose the setting Optimize: Prefer best performing ads.
Here you have two choices. Set a schedule from the start or leave this setting untouched and optimize your ad schedule at a later point in time when you have enough information in terms of clicks and impressions to make data-driven decisions.
Now that you are armed with powerful knowledge on how to structure your Google Ads account, I hope that you will go ahead and start implementing a professional structure into your very own Google Ads account.
If you still fill uneasy about the task of managing your own Google Ads account and you don’t want to waste the majority of your advertising spend on irrelevant clicks, I am here to help. Feel free to reach out via e-mail or the contact form and I will be happy to discuss your questions with you.