What To Know About Google’s New Call Conversion Service

by Laure Fisher

This week, Google introduced a new feature for AdWords — Website Call Conversions. It allows AdWords advertisers to tie calls back to the original ad click that led to website visit.  Its exciting news as it further validates the need for this type of detailed reporting in marketing campaigns and gives people who aren’t familiar with the concept of call tracking an easy foray into the process. 

In researching Google’s offering and talking with customer’s who have tried using it, we have come up with some key distinctions between their offering and ours, as we have gotten some questions about it. We also wanted to highlight for those new to call tracking in general how a service like CallTrackingMetrics can take what Google is doing in their offering to the next level.

  1. Google’s service is just tracking AdWords calls. We track calls from all online advertising sources like Bing, Yahoo, AdRoll etc (as well as offline sources) and send those conversions into Analytics. While AdWords is often a key piece of the internet marketing puzzle, for many customers, directory listings, banner ads and social media play just as big of a role.
  2. All of the telephony bells and whistles you have come to like from services like CallTrackingMetrics such as call recording, callerID, whispers, caller history, complex call forwarding etc is not available through Google’s service.
  3. The ability to analyze your calls and store information on your callers is critical to understanding whats working in your advertising so we offer a number of services like keyword spotting, demographic info on your callers, and post call surveys to capture the quality of each call.
  4. From what we have heard, Google’s service can only track/swap one number per page. This is a fairly big limitation for many of our clients and actually rules out Google’s service for the majority of them as they tend to have phone numbers listed multiple times on a page. 
  5. Google’s announcement says it assigns unique forwarding numbers for each AdWords ad click. What we have heard is that there is a click threshold that an ad group much reach in order to trigger the number generator. CTM starts tracking every visitor, regardless of volume.
  6. Your Google call forwarding number that will be displayed on your website through the Google tracking service will last for “up to 90 days.” If it works like Google Voice, the number could be recycled after a month or so of inactivity – this could be a problem for seasonal businesses, for example.  CallTrackingMetrics’ customers keep their numbers for their exclusive use throughout the lifetime of their account- regardless of website or call volume.  Our numbers go through an extensive cleaning process for at least 9 months before being released back into inventory for purchase.
  7. With Google’s tracking, the dynamic number generation only seems to apply to the initial landing page (in initial testing). It does not continue to display that number throughout the site. CTM’s tracking code cookies a visitor to an original source and not only tracks them throughout your whole site (and shows them the same tracking number) but also remembers the source that initially led them to you each time they visit your site so they continue to see the same tracking numbers as on their original visit.. 
  8. Google’s Website Call Conversions are only available in countries where Google forwarding numbers are available: Australia, France, Germany, Spain, the UK and the US. CallTrackingMetrics offers local numbers in over 30 countries at this point in places like Canada, Israel, Brazil, and South Africa. 
  9. If you rely on CallTrackingMetrics CRM and Metrics Integrations with Salesforce, HubSpot, Sugar, Optimizely, Kenshoo etc, then you know how critical it is to be able to see your calls right in these systems as soon as they happen.

If you have any questions about Google’s new call conversion tool, would like to talk about call tracking in general, or have specific questions about our services, we would be delighted to speak with you.