Tracking phone calls is not a new feature but it’s still not widely used by small businesses. Before digital marketing, businesses could purchase additional phone numbers, which could be assigned to an advertising medium like a television commercial or billboard. Some phone directory publishers realized the value in call tracking and provided advertisers a unique phone number track calls resulting from advertising in the phone directory.
The goal hasn’t changed from the days of the phone directory: Attribute profitable action to advertising spend.
The large number of referral sources to your website can cause a tracking problem. Listing a static phone number on your website won’t suffice for tracking where traffic is coming from. But injecting a snippet of code and subscribing to a call tracking service solves this issue and adds value to your marketing efforts.
Let’s now take a look at two variants of call tracking — standard and keyword-level call tracking.
Standard call tracking is the most cost-effective call tracking option with just the dedicated phone numbers and call minutes driving price. With this option, marketers see which medium sent converting traffic to your site and some caller information:
Here’s a sample report from Digital Third Coast’s call tracking solution.
This is some powerful information for a marketer but it leaves out one important detail — which keyword triggered the call?
If keyword level data is information that you can’t live without, you can purchase a call tracking solution that captures which keyword triggers a call. Though, you’ll typically pay more for this data. When a call is attributed to a keyword, many, many more phone numbers are needed depending on your click volume. For example, a smaller PPC campaign with under 1,000 clicks/month costs about $125/month for keyword level call tracking. The data can be very useful, but will typically not come cheap.
It’s important to understand what information you’ll receive through call tracking but it’s probably more important to understand how you’ll use this information.
Regardless of which version you choose, call tracking provides some level of insight not obtainable through any of your other marketing metrics. For this reason, DTC highly recommends using call tracking to better understand your marketing efforts for both your SEO and paid media campaigns.