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How-to: Set Up Call Tracking for AdWords in Under 10 Minutes

Published: February 5, 2015

Author: David George

A recent study commissioned by Google showed us that 70% of mobile searchers use click to call, and that calls are an important channel for consumers.
A lot of SMB owners have businesses with a large portion of their revenue based on orders and consultations, all stemming from a phone call. If you use Google AdWords, learning how to use ads to generate phone calls to your business can be a very important strategy.

Use a Call Extension

For those of you who have past experience with placing phone numbers in PPC ads, you may recall that a lot of folks were just placing the number right into the ad copy itself. Besides now being against AdWords rules, there’s a better tool out there for us – it’s called the Call Extension.
On mobile devices, the same call extension is displayed as a phone icon and will dial the specified number once tapped.
These call extensions can be set at the group level of your ads, so you have the option of showing different numbers for each ad group. This allows you to further customize local ad listings, especially in regions with many different area codes.
You have two options for which phone number you show: your own business number, or a (free) Google Voice tracking number. With a Google Voice number, you have the luxury of Google helping out and categorizing calls of certain length as conversions. Using your own number, however, reinforces the local aspect of your business and allows potential customers to save your true contact information.

Track Calls from Your Website

But what happens if the user doesn’t call directly upon viewing your ad? What if they write the number down to call later? This is where tracking calls to your website comes in handy.
The quick and easy solution is to use a unique phone number per ad group. These numbers can come from Google Voice or through your phone provider. The idea is that whenever you receive a call to this number, you know that the only place they saw this number was through your specific ad. Compare your ad’s views, clicks, and the calls received on that special line, and you’ve got yourself a simple, free, call conversion funnel.
There are a couple other methods of doing this using services like ifByPhone, Mongoose Metrics, and others that cost around $150 per month. Basically, they have programs that generate a different phone number for every ad click. Without their computer programs, this would be extremely time-consuming and even more costly.
Have you considered using an ad strategy to help generate more calls? Share with me below!

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