Use Call Tracking to Improve Your Marketing Insights

08 Feb 2016

Perhaps you've set up Google Analytics to track online purchases or form completions. Maybe you've implemented event tracking in order to view the number of users who download PDFs, watch videos, etc.

But do you have a complete picture of how your website is interacting with your audiences? 

Your prospects may be comfortable submitting an online form, but many will prefer to pick up the phone and call you directly. If you want information about both types of users, consider using call tracking.

For many years, call tracking has helped measure the effectiveness of print ads, online display (aka, banner) ads, and email marketing. Unique phone numbers are included in the ads and emails, and the performance of these campaigns are tracked by the number of calls. However, it can become expensive to buy a unique phone number for every new campaign.

You could also include a single tracking phone number on your website for sales leads and track the number of calls that come in, but this method doesn’t provide any information about the user or how they came to, or interacted with, your website.

What is call tracking?

Call tracking software uses "dynamic number insertion" (DNI) to provide valuable information about the users who call you after visiting your website.

Here’s how DNI works:

  • Include a call tracking code on every page of your website.
  • Include a phone number as a call-to-action on every relevant page. (It is preferable that you have a sales number separate from the main office number.)
  • When the user visits the site, they will see one of 8-10 rotating numbers in place of the sales number included. The call tracking platform places a cookie in the browser of the user, so this phone number will stay the same through the duration of the website visit, and should stay the same if the user returns to the site later.

When the user calls the tracking number, the platform records a great deal of useful information about the caller. 

That "New Business" number? That's one of the eight rotating phone numbers. The types of call data that can be gathered, depending on the platform:

  • Name, phone number, and city/state as provided by caller ID
  • Online source of the call (Google organic search, AdWords ad, social media…)
  • Landing page on your website
  • Referring website (Facebook, online directories…)
  • Keyword used to trigger ads from AdWords and Bing Ads
  • Type of device (desktop, mobile…)
  • Some platforms even allow you to record the phone calls

TradeMark Media uses CallRail, which starts at $30 per month for the basic package. They offer local tracking numbers in your area code, and for an additional cost you can get a toll-free number. They also easily integrate with Google Analytics so you can track phone calls alongside other conversion goals.

Let us know if you have questions about the ways call tracking can help your organization measure marketing performance.

Patrick Wicker

Online Marketing Manager

As a digital market expert and Google Analytics-certified pro, Patrick helps our clients get found online.

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