New patient growth is critical to your plastic surgery practice. However, because many cosmetic surgery procedures are elective and not covered by insurance, new patients are not finding you through insurance directories. Instead, they are searching for your services online – the customers go to Google to do queries.
How you market your practice is critical to your practice’s growth and its financial performance. Plastic surgery SEO (search engine optimization) is one of the most important marketing tactics you can implement in your practice. Here’s why:
- First place new patients go for information. According to Ad Week, 81% of consumers research online before they buy. This means that the majority of them are going directly to Google and searching organically (non-paid) for plastic surgeons. With the penetration of smartphones, it’s just too easy for a possible new patient to go online to find plastic surgeons, read reviews, and learn more about each practice. Your potential new patients have access to this information all the time.
- Lowest cost: The cost to acquire new customers through SEO and search marketing is lowest of any marketing tactics and 1/10th or more of the cost of acquiring new patients through traditional marketing tactics (i.e. print, TV, or radio). SEO is working for you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week – it is always on.
- Always on. SEO is working for you 24 hours per day, 7 days per week.
Search Volume In Google For Cosmetic Surgery Is Growing
Take a look at the upward trend in the chart below – it shows search volume in Google for moms that are actively searching for Mommy Makeovers – it has been growing consistently every year since 2007. This is a significant growth trend happening in Google right now.
Without a cosmetic surgery SEO marketing plan you are missing this growth and leaving the new business to your more savvy surgeon competitors.
Cost To Acquire Customers Through SEO Is The Lowest
Out of all the marketing tactics, you will consider for your practice, SEO provides the lowest cost per lead out of any marketing whether digital or traditional.
Because people go to Google to start their search for plastic surgeons, or Mommy Makeovers, these patients are “warm leads” – they are warm because they had to type in your services into Google so we know they are interested, and actively searching; we just have to capture that traffic on your website. Compare that to traditional marketing efforts such as print, radio, or TV – none of that advertising is pre-qualified, and the waste associated with those forms of advertising are huge. The cost per lead of acquiring a new plastic surgery patient is often 10 times higher through traditional marketing versus SEO.
How Does SEO Work For Plastic Surgery?
SEO is complex and involves many technical and non-technical skills, but in its simplest explanation, effective SEO is largely about quality content that lives on your website which addresses the needs of your new patients and the information they are searching for in Google.
When someone searches in Google, Google wants to serve the most relevant and helpful content (i.e. websites) it can to searchers and that starts with quality content in the form of well-written textual content, videos, and images. If your website does not have good content, but your competitors do, then they will get the search traffic from Google, not you!
What people search for varies greatly depending on where they are in the process as well. Someone just starting their research into possible plastic surgery options has very different needs than someone who has gathered all the necessary information. A new patient early on in their discovery process may have more questions about safety and risks, insurance and financing questions, or best procedures for their particular case. A new patient who is closer to their decision and spent considerable time gathering information will query for different topics – we refer to this as a sales cycle or sales funnel.
Producing lots of quality content that resides on your website allows you to capture hundreds of different searches that otherwise you would not be able to capture.
Sales Cycle For Plastic Surgery Patients
The sales cycle can be weeks, months, or even a year or more as someone gathers information about elective plastic surgery options and then finally decides on a procedure or cosmetic surgeon.
A well thought out SEO strategy around plastic surgery questions your target audience has at different stages of the sales cycle allows you to capture the consumer as they move down the path to making their decision from start to finish.
Plastic Surgery Patient Searches Change
When someone first starts considering cosmetic surgery, he or she might search for topics such as:
- Does insurance cover plastic surgery?
- Is plastic surgery safe?
- What are the risks?
- Who is a good candidate for plastic surgery?
As someone moves closer to making a decision the questions and the intent changes and the questions could become more specific:
- Plastic surgery for eyes
- Plastic surgery for men
- Plastic surgeons that specialize in mommy makeovers
Moreover, when someone is ready to make a decision on a cosmetic surgeon, their searches might look like:
- Reviews of cosmetic surgeons in…
- Plastic surgery prices and cost
- Plastic surgeons near me
This is only a very small sampling of all the hundreds of different ways people will query in Google for your services at the various stages and the information they are looking for. A well-developed plastic surgery SEO plan will incorporate content that ensures your website can capture this traffic in Google at each phase of the customers’ journey.
Without writing SEO optimized content around the questions your future new patients have, you have little hope of capturing those leads on your website and instead rely on less effective and more expensive traditional marketing tactics.
Although a well thought out SEO content plan is essential, it is not the only thing that should be considered.
Is your plastic surgery website optimized for conversions? What does this mean?
It is one thing to have plenty of well-written content on your website that is capturing search traffic, but optimizing for conversions is about making it as easy as possible for your website visitors to complete a task or goal, such as contacting you either through a form on your website or a phone call. Reducing friction and resistance in this process for the customer while on your website is important.
To make conversions happen more efficiently, however, you have to address the needs and concerns of your patients. The goal is to reduce the hesitations new patients might have with your practice and grow their confidence that you are the right plastic surgeon.
How Is Conversion Improved?
In short, conversion optimization happens by designing your website so that it addresses your patients’ most common questions (needs and concerns), reduces their anxiety, and boosts their confidence. This happens through effective design and layout of your website along with endorsements and trust marks from other organizations (i.e. American Society of Plastic Surgeons, etc), patient testimonials, and before/after cosmetic surgery cases and images or videos.
Improving conversion optimization will also improve your SEO as Google will reward your site from the improved visitor engagement with your website.
SEO (search engine optimization) is by far one of the single most effective marketing strategies you can utilize to grow your cosmetic surgery or medical spa practice. It is always working for you in the most efficient and targeted way.