Amwell

American Well drives
4x increase in downloads.

Healthcare app accelerates user acquisition with Search Ads, broadening customer base across the U.S. and driving down costs by 10x leading into peak seasons.

Goals

  • Improve brand visibility.
  • Stay competitive in growing category.
  • Drive consideration during peak seasons.

Strategy

  • Structure campaigns to drive performance goals.
  • Increase investment during key seasons to reach more people.

Results

  • Increased downloads by 4x quarter‑over-quarter.
  • Lowered acquisition costs by 10x over five months.

American Well finds engaged users.

American Well uses technology to improve access to quality healthcare. Through partnerships with the nation’s largest healthcare systems, insurers, employers, and retailers, the Amwell app gives consumers the ability to see doctors they trust via live video visits. To stay competitive in the increasingly competitive Healthcare category, the visibility of the Amwell app needed to grow significantly.

“Every day, customers are given more choices. There are over 300 telehealth apps now and it’s harder to grab the attention of users. We want to ensure our app is discoverable at the moment when someone becomes sick and searches for an app to help find medical care,” says Tim Ming, Director of Digital Marketing at American Well.

Drive performance with relevancy.

American Well has extensive experience driving user acquisition through traditional search marketing. However, existing keyword lists didn’t always reflect how people search on the App Store. “On other platforms, people may search for general symptoms and information. But people come to the App Store with more intent. They want to find apps that meet their specific needs and they are ready to take action,” says Ming.

To fine-tune robust keyword lists for Search Ads, American Well set up discovery campaigns with Search Match, which uncovers new relevant keywords on the App Store. Brand campaigns include the app’s name, the company name as well as relevant partners’ brands. Generic campaigns focus on search terms including personal symptom checkers and condition management. To engage users searching for apps with similar features, American Well launched competitor campaigns.

“Search Ads helps us introduce our brand to users searching for similar apps, enabling us to grow in brand recognition. It also helps us stay on top of emerging direct competitors,” believes Ming. Quarter-over-quarter, download volume for the Amwell app has increased by 4x with Search Ads. Meanwhile, costs have decreased by 10x in the past 5 months. American Well has seen a surge in efficient scale for non-branded keywords, delivering results at 2x lower costs than other advertising platforms.

Invest to leverage seasonality.

American Well’s key performance indicator is driving a revenue-generating doctor visit. Ming focuses on finding people who need care quickly throughout the year but sees an uptick in the summer months when urgent care visits tend to rise. The app also sees a massive increase in interest and usage during flu season, typically starting in the last quarter of the year and extending through the first quarter of the following one.

“Our business is highly seasonal and we prepare by actively monitoring keyword bids. Search Ads consistently helps us scale growth and delivers high quality users who convert really well. That means we are willing to increase our investment during our busiest seasons,” says Ming.

Search Ads delivers new users who have very strong intent. In fact, they convert faster, typically completing a doctor’s visit within three days of downloading the app, significantly faster than new users from other platforms. “Telehealth is still really a new business offering with a long way to go. Search Ads can help us drive awareness when someone is sick and stay top of mind until a user is ready to re-engage,” believes Ming.

After all, Ming shares, the relationship between American Well and consumers expands over a long period of time. Many users can go many months, if not years, without needing to use the app again. He estimates more than half of the Amwell app’s downloads come from users who previously downloaded the app, highlighting the importance of the app’s “always on” approach to Search Ads.

Search Ads consistently helps us scale growth and delivers high quality users.

Tim Ming, American Well

Company Snapshot

  • American Well Corporation
  • Medical category
  • Founded in 2006
  • Based in Boston, MA, USA
  • App Store rating of 4+