Have you ever wondered, “How can I effectively optimize my paid search accounts if the only data I have is conversions from contact us form leads?” Well, there are several options out there to capture additional conversion data, and one of those is through phone call tracking.

A Free Option

Both Google and Bing do provide a basic solution using call forwarding numbers. These numbers are set up within the call extension sections in their respective interfaces. You set up your actual destination number and if you want to capture conversions directly in Google or Bing you can set the option to use a call forwarding number. Then you can set a minimum call duration to count as a conversion, for example perhaps you know a call over two minutes usually results in a qualified lead or sale.

Call Tracking, Google Adwords

Courtesy: Google Adwords

Google has also taken additional steps to help advertisers track calls on site. A feature that has recently come out of its beta, called “Website Call Conversions.” This allows you to place a snippet of HTML code across all pages of your site. Then another set of JavaScript code is used to replace the phone number on-site to dynamically change to the Google call forwarding number when a user who has clicked an ad visits the site.

While this is a free solution provided by Google there are some inherent limitations to this. One of the main limitations is that this number will only activate after someone has come through a Google paid search ad. The team here at Cardinal Web Solutions has noticed that if there is low search volume that Google Call Forwarding numbers do not always display or activate and instead your regular number is shown.

The Paid Option

Don’t worry there is a much better solution available, although it is not free. Here at Cardinal Web Solutions we have partnered with a best in class solution called Response Tap. One of the main benefits of using Response Tap is that it allows you to track the entire customer journey both from a paid and organic perspective.

Response Tap

Response Tap sample

This works similar to the solution created by Google, but with Response Tap a new dynamically generated number will appear on-site to each unique visitor regardless of whether they came from a Paid Ad, Organic Visit, or Direct Visit. During the initial setup you also associate your Google Analytics account to Response Tap in order to create custom phone call tracking goals.

First you would create a goal to track all website phone calls, as well as both Google and Bing call extension calls with a unique trackable single number. Furthermore, you can also set up benchmark goals to segment phone calls over a certain duration. For example, one of our clients has let us know that calls over 5 minutes usually turn into business, thus we set those as qualified leads.

segmented keyword conversion example

This feature allows you to segment reports to see what type of conversions are generated.

The Golden Data Metrics

One thing that has yet to be mentioned is that this software allows users to track phone calls down to the keyword level, much like you would be able to do using a Google call forwarding number. While you do have to pay certain costs based upon length of call and call connections, the benefits and efficiencies derived will far outweigh the costs. By running a Search Query Report in Google and segmenting by conversion types you can tell which keywords are generating calls. If you have set up bench-marked timed goals you can further segment by highly qualified calls, which are more likely to turn into leads, and actual business and revenue.

By implementing a call tracking solution for your paid search campaigns you will be able to have a better picture of what keywords not only drive traffic to your site, but also which keywords are driving phone calls and leads to your business. With an agency solution like Response Tap in place any skilled media manager should be able to effectively optimize your campaigns to achieve greater cost savings. By knowing which terms to spend money on and lowering overall Cost-per-Acquisition, you can achieve a greater ROI on your paid media campaigns.

Of course, a truly effective paid search campaign can turn into a full-time job so contact us today if you would like help with your digital strategy.