Category Archives: Urgent Care Marketing

How To Measure Urgent Care Marketing Results

Marketing, and medical marketing in particular, has become increasingly complex over the past few decades. Back before the age of the Internet, a simple yellow pages ad and/or a few good relationships with referral partners could fill a practice. Today, we have a plethora of both online and traditional marketing tactics to choose from.

How do we decide which tactics to use? The good news is that with the complexity, we also have new tools that allow us to track your marketing results. Not every marketing technique will work in every situation, and many that do work will need to be tweaked to be truly effective. Ultimately, when we establish legitimate metrics and systems for analyzing the results of our marketing campaigns, we can help create a thriving medical practice. To do this, we need to start by deciding on a set of KPIs.

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for Urgent Care Practices

The following are metrics that should be considered when tracking results of urgent care marketing campaigns. Not all of these are relevant or possible in all situations, but by choosing a representative sample form the list below, you’ll be on your way to creating a system that allows you to maximize the  return on investment from your advertising and marketing dollars.

  • The bottom line numbers:measure urgent care marketing
    • average number of patients seen per day
    • number of new vs. returning patients
    • P&L statement
  • Phone calls measured via:
    • mobile click-to-call
    • AdWords call tracking
    • Third party call tracking
  • Website visitors
    • Online checkins
    • Form fills
    • Newsletter signup
    • Lead magnet opt-in
    • Overall traffic
    • Percentage of traffic that is highly engaged (based on time spent on site and/or views of pages)
    • Directions lookups
  • Audience numbers
    • Email subscribers
    • Social Media followers/fans

Establishing the Value of a Conversion

The various indicators listed above will have differing values. Some, such as online checkins via your website, allow for a very detailed level of revenue tracking if you are using the right checkin technology. Others indicators, such as your website traffic numbers, are useful in evaluating the reach of your campaigns and the level of engagement with existing and prospective patients.

Curious about the best set of KPIs for your practice, or need help setting up a tracking system? Contact us for a free consultation.


Urgent Care Digital Marketing Quick Reference Guide

Online marketing is an increasingly complex, multi-faceted process that begins with your Internet presence. This presence includes your website, social media profiles, and directory listings. After building out your presence, the next step is to direct prospects there, using techniques that range from SEO to paid online advertising. Then, you’ll want to engage with your visitors, via your website content and calls to action, as well as through social media, responding to reviews, email marketing, and remarketing advertising campaigns. By nurturing your connections, you can convert them to patients.

To help you better understand the digital marketing process for urgent care, we’ve created a quick reference guide with a full glossary of terms. Get your free guide here:

Marketing Insights – Urgent Care Boom Explored by Forbes Magazine

Brian Solomon wrote about the urgent care boom for a recent issue of Forbes magazine, Drive-Thru Health Care: How McDonald’s Inspired An Urgent Care Gold Rush  Solomon shares: “Dr. Bruce Irwin has been in the urgent care business for over 30 years, and he’s never seen anything like the current gold rush. “It’s like we’re in a rock band and all of sudden we have a hit, we’re an overnight sensation. But in reality we’ve been playing in bars and honky-tonks for years.

From a marketing perspective, here are two takeaways:

Urgent care is a retail business.
It is imperative to market your practice as convenient, affordable, quality care.

Prospective patients can receive care for non-acute illnesses and injuries close to their home or office. Starbucks is a great comparison. Starbucks provides a welcoming environment with upscale decor and free wi-fi. Today’s urgent care centers are moving away from the “medical clinic” feel.

The competitive landscape is rapidly changing.
New urgent care centers will be opening everywhere.

How are you positioned if a new urgent care opened on your block? What type of reputation does your practice have in the community or online? A strong SEO foundation with positive online reviews can help stave off competition. Participate in community events. This will help match a face with a business. Bringing kids to an urgent care is not so scary when the parents have already met your staff.

Mobile Traffic to Your Urgent Care Website

This month, we are evaluating the percentage of website traffic that our urgent care clients are getting from mobile (smartphone or tablet) vs. non-mobile sources.   We did this via a custom report that groups tablets and phones together, which we consider to be mobile traffic.   A similar report, which separates tablets from phones, is available in Google Analytics:  Audience > Mobile > Overview.

Overall, we are seeing very high mobile traffic numbers for urgent care clinics.  Most average very close to 50%.   Few are less than 45%, and some are already approaching 60% of total traffic coming from mobile devices.   This is compared to other types of medical practices, where we are typically seeing mobile numbers in the 25-35% range.

In addition to looking at mobile vs. non-mobile numbers, we looked closer at the sources of traffic for each type.   (Choose a secondary dimension of “Source/Medium” in the standard mobile report to see similar data.)  In general, the percentages of traffic from various sources (organic search engines, paid search, direct, etc.) was surprisingly consistent between mobile and non-mobile.   In some cases, we found that paid search traffic performed especially well, and in other cases found it to be under-performing, thus identifying opportunities to adjust bids or other aspects within AdWords or the Microsoft AdCenter.

Measuring Mobile Conversions

On a related note, we have been working with all of our clients over the past few months to implement various means of call tracking.   This is especially important for mobile searches – for an in-depth review of this issue, see the article “Mobile Calls Are The New Conversions: 7 Tips For SEMs“.  We have found that using mobile click-to-call ads in AdWords, along with mobile click-to-call event tracking in Google Analytics, allows for efficient collection of useful data.

Question, comments, or ideas about mobile traffic or tracking?   Contact us if you do!



Lowering Your Medical Practice PPC Costs via High Quality Scores

I came across a great summary of the concept of Quality Score this morning, that I’m sharing here to help answer some of the questions that often come up when working with clients.  The article, “High Quality Scores Mean Lower Pay-per-click Costs“, does a fantastic job of explaining exactly what “Quality Score” means, and how a high score leads to lower costs and higher positioning of ads.

As a quick review, quality score is determined by a range of factors, including:

  • Historical and expected clickthrough rate
  • Overall account history
  • The relevancy and overall quality of your landing page
  • The relationships between the searcher’s search term and your keyword, and the keyword and your ad copy

Ultimately, a higher quality score provides a lower cost-per-click, higher ad positions, and more relevant clicks.  For another great reference source on Quality Score, see Google’s support page on the topic.

Leveraging Quality Score for Your Medical Practice

To help explain how Quality Score can be used by a medical practice, here is an example of how an urgent care practice would achieve high quality scores for a search for occupational medicine services.   To begin, groups of similar keywords should be bundled together.   One group might be related to the phrase “workplace medicine”, another could be “occupational medicine”, and then others for “DOT Physicals”, “Employee Physicals”, etc.   Within each group, similar and longer phrases would be included, such as:

  • workplace medicine
  • workplace medicine provider
  • workplace medical provider
  • workplace medical provider san antonio
  • etc.

Then, you would create ads that use the phrase “workplace medicine” in the text.   And, you would link this page to your main occupational medicine page, in which the phrase “workplace medicine” appears in a few places.   In the end, you help bolster your quality score, leading to a better value on the clicks you obtain.   In addition, you are providing a better experience for your visitor, which in turn increases the likelihood that they will reach out to you.



Should Our Urgent Care Center Offer Wi-Fi to Patients?

Alan Ayers wrote a convincing article on the benefits of offering free wi-fi to patients in an urgent care center in the February 2013 issue of The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine. The article offers some great tips for getting started and alleviates privacy concerns.

We always reiterate to our clients that urgent care is a retail business offering high quality medical services. Providing free wi-fi shows that your urgent care center is patient focused and respects people’s time. The urgent care model is based on convenience, but we all know that the best urgent care centers can have wait times over 30 minutes at peak volume times.

Wi-fi allows time-starved people to be productive and not feel that their time in your practice was wasted.  It increases the likelihood of a return visit.

Article: The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine _ WiFi in UC