MMM [Websites] Cracking the Code: Unveiling the Origins of Your Patient Traffic

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This Episode is Sponsored by: Dandy | The Fully Digital, US-based Dental Lab

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Hey guys, welcome back to our Monday Morning Marketing series! Today, Shane Simmons and I are lunging into the untapped potential of your online presence. In this episode, we explore the crucial importance of tracking where your patients are coming from, and the nuts and bolts of how to do it! Getting well versed in your patient traffic flow will help you to make informed decisions to optimize your digital marketing efforts. Nobody likes to question whether or not their website is actually doing anything, right? Well, let's discover how we can make yours a valuable tool for growth, guiding you towards a thriving practice in the digital age!

Step into my conversation with Shane Simmons this week, and we'll learn the vital intricacies of websites together!

You can reach out to Shane Simmons here:



Other Mentions and Links:

Google Analytics

Site Map Lookup


Installing Conversions with Google Analytics Video

Google Tag Manager

Episode Transcript (Auto-Generated - Please Excuse Errors)

Michael: Hey Shane. So talk to us about websites. How can we utilize this, or what advice, suggestions, or methods can you give us that will help us actually attract new patients through

Shane: websites? Yeah, Michael, I mean, our website, I think this is too many times. We look of it and we think of it as just kind of like a digital billboard for the practice, and we know it's there.

It's a necessity, but. A lot of practices we talk with don't really know what they're getting from their website or how patients are finding them. And so that's really what I wanna focus on today and, and the first piece of advice, and probably the most critical piece of advice that I would give anyone when they're reviewing their website or building a website for their practice is, Make sure that you have the proper tracking set up and in place.

And what I mean by that is there are things that you can set up in Google Analytics and uh, Google Tag Manager for anybody who's heard of that. Where if somebody fills out a form on the website, you can actually go into your Google Analytics account and you can set up what are called conversions, where Google will show you, you know, how many form submissions you had on your site in the last.

30 days where those form submissions actually came from. So what was the first touchpoint? Did they go, uh, to a Google organic search and that's how they got to the site and filled out a form. Did they come from a Facebook ad? Did they come from an insurance referral? You can start collecting that data.

So each and every month, like what we do at our agency is we review that data with our clients and say, you know, hey, we had 20. You know, form submissions from Google Organic. We had 15 from Facebook ads, 10 from Google Ads, so on and so forth. And so that's the first thing is make sure that you have conversion tracking set up so you know that your website is doing what it's supposed to be doing.

And then if it's not, then that's when you can go in and start to make some changes in corrections. So that's number one. The second part about the tracking is, uh, call tracking. And so I make, tell everybody you have to have call tracking on your website, so you know, again, where are your patients coming from?

Are they coming from Google? Are they coming from a referral or insurance, whatever the case is. Have some form of call tracking set up. That way you know where those patients are coming from and the, and the blowback that sometimes very few, but some people will give us on that is, well, if I change the number on my website to a call tracking number, I.

Is that going to throw off my patients? And the answer to that question is we have dozens and dozens of accounts who have call tracking set up, and we have not heard one message about somebody saying, this isn't your phone number, or you had the wrong phone number on your site. Because in the world we live in on our mobile phones, people just click that call button and that's it.

Right? They're, they're not memorizing their dentist's phone number anymore, so don't worry about that. It's imperative that you know where your. patient base is coming from. So that's number one is, is call tracking and form tracking on the site. Michael. Um, the second thing that I'll go into is your site structure and making sure that your structure is set up properly.

So the way that I kind of put this in dental terms is if you were going to place an implant, uh, you had the tooth extracted and all of this, and you're ready to place that implant. You'd wanna make sure that the bone structure is there and is healthy for an implant. Same thing goes for your website. You need to make sure that the structure of that site is correct before you start sending traffic to it, doing SEO and all of these different things.

And so, What site structure boils down to, in nerdy terms, is making sure that you have one H one header on your website. You can Google this, it'll, it's really clear, but it's basically the first biggest heading on your site. That's your H one header, and that's the most important header on the site because that tells Google what the page is about.

Then under that H one header, like for your subsections on a page, Those would be your, what you call H two headings. And then you have H three. So it's like a bullet point system of prominence down to, you know, maybe the, the least prominent on the page. You need to make sure that that's set up correctly.

Because if you have multiple H one headers on a site, which we've seen in many dental, uh, practice sites before, or, you know, uh, that structure is, is all over the place. It confuses Google at the end of the day, and anything that confuses Google is going to hurt your presence online. So make sure that you have the proper site settings, uh, set up.

You can do a site map lookup. Um, it's a free tool online that you can use and see that you have that, uh, set up properly. And then the third thing that I'll touch on here, Michael, before we kind of open it up for questions for you is, you may wanna look into having a web chat on your site. And, and this is something that.

Uh, we really like using with, um, some of the different vendors that, that we work with to have a web chat put on there. That way your team can get notified anytime. Somebody may have a quick question on there. Maybe they wanna know if you're a network with their insurance, whatever the case is. It's all about convenience for the patient at the end of the day.

That's why we love having web chat, online scheduling, all of these tools where thinking about, you know, if you were the patient, what would be the most convenient way? For them to get an appointment, at your practice. And that's really what you need to do is put yourself in the, in the shoes of the patient.

And if you do that, you have, you'll form, um, a web form chat on your site. If you have online scheduling on your site, you have that hierarchy set up properly, like we talked about in that site structure, and you have that call tracking and form tracking set in place. You're gonna notice a big difference in how your website is actually generating patients for you, rather than just feeling like your site's there just to be there.

Michael: Mm-hmm. Gotcha. So these are three really, really key, uh, factors important. One thing I wanna rewind back on is where you talk about proper tracking needs to be set up in place. How do we even get started with this? So if you could, I guess, like. Walk us step by step. We're on Google Analytics now. We, we set it up or I'm pretty sure that's a lot of people have it set up or they ask their agency to, to see it.

Now how do we kind of look into it?

Shane: Yeah, so once you have Google Analytics installed on your site, which everybody listening to this should have Google Analytics on their site. It's a free tool and it's, it's a great tool to use to give you insights. Once you have Google Analytics set on your site, um, that's when you'll want to go to something that's called Google Tag Manager.

And so, uh, Google Tag Manager basically allows you to put a snippet of code on your website. On certain areas where conversions would happen. So if somebody were to fill out a form on the site, once they fill out that form, Ideally they should go to what we call a thank you page, where a screen loads and it says, you know, thank you for filling out the form.

We'll be contacting you soon. And on that thank you page within Google Tag Manager, you can copy and paste a piece of code that basically tells Google if somebody sees this page. They have filled out a form on the website, and that's a conversion. And what Google does is it installs cookies on that person's browser so it knows where that person came from, whether it was from a Google search or from Facebook or Instagram, whatever the case is, they know that.

So then it's gonna give you that data back. That said, this form submission. Was through, uh, you know, a Google search. So that's the first thing and is in Google Tag Manager. The second thing that you can do, and I I think this is really underutilized in Google Tag Manager, is you could actually, uh, put uh, like a tag on a button on your page, um, and then take appropriate actions from there.

So what I mean by that is, let's see, we have a video on the homepage of your site and you wanna track how many people watch that video. who interacted with it, these type of things. You can actually, within Google Tag Manager, just put a piece of code on that button where people click to watch the video, and it will give you direct feedback of, this is how many people in the last 30 days, watch the video, here's where they came from.

And then what you can do is then use that to retarget them on Facebook or Instagram maybe, where if they saw your video on your page, you can then start to put, you know, patient reviews in front of them and things like that. So, There's so many things that you can do in Google Tag Manager, obviously, you know, our agency, uh, helps practices with that and we set that all up for all of our clients.

But if you're, somebody who wants to try to do that on their own, um, go to YouTube, type in, um, installing conversions with Google Analytics or Google Tag Manager, and there are step-by-step, you know, walkthrough videos there. If you have some experience in, uh, backend web development, um, you may be able to do that yourself.


Michael: Okay. So where do you recommend we put these Google tags? So you said specific conversion pages. So if you're making a website or somebody's looking at their website and they're like, man, I don't even know. I just asked my agency and they give me a report, or they tell me this, but I don't even know where would you recommend you put these tags on there?

Shane: Yeah, great question. So first off, make sure that you've tagged any, if, if there's form submissions happening on that site or that landing page, make sure that you're tagging those form submissions and that's going to a thank you page. That way you, you know, that's the, the lowest hanging group. The easiest thing to tag right there, a new lead is anybody that fills out a web form.

That's number one. Um, if you have online scheduling, which as we know, a lot of practices do have that now. You can tag the button there. in the online scheduling, so you can see how many people actually clicked to schedule online. We would recommend tagging that. We also tag anytime someone has clicked on the phone number on the site.

Even though we have that call tracking in place, we still like to know how many people, actually clicked the number on the site and where they clicked it at. And then the fourth part there is if you have any video content on the site. Tag that as well, so you know how many people are actually watching those videos and engaging with it.

Um, if anybody, because if you spend thousands of dollars to maybe get, you know, videos done and nobody's watching them, you're not really using that investment to your advantage. Maybe that video needs to be placed somewhere else on the site, or maybe it's not clear. Maybe there's like a small play button and it's not clear to the person that that's a video.

So all of that data will allow you to see how can we get this video in front of people easily where they know, you know, it's a video that they should watch when they come to our site. And you can start to track that. So those are the areas, the thank you page or contact us page. Um, once they've filled out a form, online scheduling button, if they've clicked that phone number, tag your phone number and any video content that you may have on a webpage, those are four right there that if you start tagging those, it's gonna give you a great amount of feedback.

Michael: Gotcha. And so if we ask our, let's just say our marketing agency or company, Hey, let me see the numbers for this, right? What are we looking for when it comes to like, oh man, nobody's filled out web forms. Or like, there hasn't been that many people clicking on phone numbers or onsite, or they don't even provide that.

What are we looking for to ask when it comes to this particular question with analytics?

Shane: Yep. Yeah. So the first thing you wanna look at is for any calls that we've had to the practice, um, you'd want to take a look at those calls. Where do those calls come from in your online marketing? So you'd like to, you know, get a report so you can see Google Organic calls versus, you know, if you're running Google Ads or Facebook ads, how do those calls break down?

So that would be the first thing. Um, second thing that you would want to ask for is, For any of our contact form submissions on the site or online scheduling, what are the analytics like as far as where patients are coming from when they're filling out that information. So that would be, uh, an important aspect there because I.

If you see that you're getting, you know, 80% of your form submissions are coming from referrals or existing patients, and you're spending thousands of dollars on online ads and you're not seeing, you know, very many conversions, then that's, you know, a red flag to know, okay, maybe we need to shift our focus or the campaign, whatever the case is there.

So knowing where those, um, form submissions, contact form submissions. Actually came from is a great, you know, insight to ask your agency if you're working with someone. And then the easiest way is just be able to look at the site and say, okay, I see how many visitors we had that came to the site. I see how long, you know, the average person spent on the site, all of this data, but.

What you really wanna look for is where's the acquisition, where are they coming from? And they should be able to provide you a report where you can see, where your patients are actually coming from, um, in the practice. And, and the rule that we have at Crimson Media is ideally if you're, you know, you want Google Organic to be your number one source of new patient traffic.

Then any sort of digital ads you're running. And then third would be, um, referrals or existing patients who visit the site directly. That's kind of the hierarchy that we like to see, um, as far as where patients come from.

Michael: Gotcha. That's a good rule, man. Okay. And then when it came to web chat on our site, which one would you recommend where you're like, we've seen fantastic results from this, and if you can let us know, which one would you say like, there's lots of kinks to

Shane: work out.

Yeah, we've, I mean we've seen a lot of them. Um, I would say our go-to and favorite one to use is through Swell. Um, so if you use swell for your online reviews, which is where most of our clients, we use them as well, full transparency there. but they have a, a web chat as well, and a lot of people don't really know that, I don't think.

Mm-hmm. And so, We've had a lot of success with swells, web chat, um, very easy to install for your agency, and, uh, has some great prompts and things in there that you can build in. And I think it's just overall the smoothest, interaction for the patient too. Some of these web chats out there that I've tested and demoed have been just a little.

Glitchy, uh, and they just aren't very user-friendly, whereas the one that we've used was swell. It's just very user-friendly, it's clean looking, and we've had a lot of success with, with those, but there are so many out there you can research and see what one is best for you. But that's been the, the one that's been most successful for us.


Michael: Shane, I appreciate your time and if anyone has further questions, you can definitely find 'em on the Dental Marketer Society Facebook group, or where can they reach out to you directly?

Shane: Yeah, they can, as you mentioned, dental marketer Facebook group, we're always hanging out in there, but you can also go to our website, crimson media

If you come in, if you book a, you know, a free marketing strategy, um, call with me. Uh, let me know that you came from the dental marketer, Michael, and, uh, we'll hook you up with a special surprise. Yeah, that's

Michael: a cool thing. Everybody listening gets a very comprehensive strategy. When you book it with Crimson Media Group.

So guys, go ahead and do that. It's gonna be in the show notes below. And Shane, thank you for being with me on this Monday morning marketing episode. Thanks, Michael.