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Driving Calls from Google Search through Call Extensions5 min read

5 min read

Croud talks through Google’s call extensions on PPC ads and what it can do for your business: 

When a customers calls, it is important to know what prompted the call, quite simply you need to know which part of your marketing campaigns are working to get your true ROI by channel. For any company where a phone number is an important part of its online strategy, understanding exactly which keywords drive phone calls is invaluable for any business wanting to make accurate and informed decisions about marketing strategy.

Google AdWords gives you the flexibility to easily apportion and manage your PPC budget and drive customers to your business without investing masses of time and effort. However, AdWords shouldn’t just be viewed as a method of driving business from customers using desktops, as Google’s newly improved call extensions features allows you to drive calls from mobile users as well.

Today’s Internet users are constantly connected and search from a wide variety of devices. Google now gives us the ability to quickly provide customers with the right information, in formats that make sense according to where they are, the time of day and the device they are using. Call extensions allow you to do just that as they are eminently customisable, meaning that you can now catch customers at just the right moment to encourage them to make the call to your business; wherever they are, however they are connected.

Not only do the improved call extensions enhance customer connection, they can also provide accurate reporting to track how many call conversions your Google AdWords ad attracts. This makes quantifying the ROI of your ad a breeze.

Connecting with Customers

Call extensions are essentially customisable AdWords solutions that offer one-click/one-touch buttons that allow users to call your business. They come with multiple mobile formats that you can experiment with to discover the best results:

  • Call extension: Basic one-click/touch call button that connects the customer to your business directly.
  • Call extension with call only: Cut out additional links and focus on providing basic information along with call button.
  • Location extension with call button: Add your business’ location directly underneath the ad.

Google call extensions

In addition to the different formats, you can also schedule how your extensions are displayed in order to improve their relevance. For example, scheduling your call extensions to be displayed during your business’ opening hours means customers won’t mistakenly call when your staff aren’t available.

Managing call extension scheduling is a quick and easy process that will keep your customers’ search results as relevant as possible and drive calls to your business.

Measuring Success: Call Extension Reporting

One of the strengths of PPC is that it’s easier to accurately determine its effectiveness compared with other forms of online advertising where quantifying ROI can be more problematic. Naturally, you’ll want the same kind of clarity regarding ROI when driving phone calls through Google AdWords.

Fortunately, Google now provides your ad with a free forwarding number, which enables accurate and hassle-free reporting on the ad’s success. Whenever a customer uses the call extension (regardless of the device they are using) they are calling the free forwarding number which AdWords then routes to your business phone number.

By routing calls through this number Google is able to gather and store information about the caller. This allows you to receive detailed reports about the calls generated by your ads so you can gain valuable insight into what kind of customers are using the service and what your call conversion rates are.

call extensions reporting

Integrating Call Tracking

While call extension reporting provides useful information by itself, integrating call tracking services takes that insight to a whole new level. By seamlessly integrating with Google Analytics, call tracking allows you to map the visitor’s interaction with your site, fully detailing any goals that were triggered during their call regardless of their device used or their path to sale.

With call tracking, each call generates a virtual page view request to Google Analytics, which allows for detailed segmentation and path analysis of any given visitor’s site interaction. This means that you will have a better idea of your site’s bounce rate as visitors can often land on your site and then call, instead of using the call button directly. Regardless of their source, call tracking accurately reports on how your customers are visiting your site and what results from their interactions.

Linking calls to AdWords through call tracking is vital for managing PPC effectively as you need to be able to accurately map the conversion rates of your received calls in the same way you would from

the click of an online customer. This way you can clearly see which keywords are performing well and which ones need to be altered.

Making the Numbers Add Up

To recap, here are the principal benefits of improving your AdWords campaign with call extensions:

  • Google forwarding numbers are provided for free and allow accurate reporting on calls being driven by the ad.
  • Call extension mobile formats allow for a significant degree of customisation, which means you can present the ad in the most appealing and relevant fashion possible.
  • Extension scheduling means that ads will only drive calls during relevant business hours, avoiding customer frustration or disappointment.
  • Experience higher clickthrough rate as AdWords advertisers who have added call extensions have usually seen an average increase of 6-8%.