Call Tracking Explained

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Our newest service is one of the coolest things I’ve seen to come to the SEO field in a while now. The new call tracking is leading edge lead tracking at it’s best. Plus, you can use it for more than just tracking calls, you can use it to improve the overall service of your company as well, which I’ll discuss shortly below.

So what is this call tracking service all about?

Well, let’s use an imaginary company, ABC Widgets for this example. ABC has been in business for ten years, and sells widgets commercially as well as in their three stores across the US. They also have a website which they’ve put a little money into making nice, and they spend about $1000/month on SEO, a good start.

ABC’s owner, Bill, is a bit ‘old school’ and not totally sold on paying $1000/month to his SEO guy, which his company hired in January. Bill sees that there has been an increase in revenue from April to now, but he can’t pin it all on SEO. During the early months this year, he also put a big ad in the Yellow Pages, and he pays his web provider a monthly fee to “be listed on their site(s)”. He doesn’t know what that means, but the increase in leads/sales since April makes him think it’s working.

Bill’s website is a typical site, showing all his widgets and their various styles and shapes. The widgets are heavy and cumbersome, so shipping is not an option. Because of that, the website doesn’t actually have a full “shopping cart experience”, customers must call or contact ABC in order to purchase their widgets. Bill is very happy with the look of the website, and the company gets several email leads a week from it. So Bill knows that the website is producing some income, although he doesn’t track it completely.

For instance, many times new customers call and want to order items, or want to visit a local store to try out his widgets. Between his Yellow Pages ad, the postcard mailer he just did (which cost a small fortune!) and the website, he has several ways that these customers could have come about finding his phone number. Problem is, he doesn’t know where they originally found him, and his sales guys are not good at all at asking customers how they found their company in the first place.

One day, Bill’s SEO guy tells him about our call tracking service. Here’s how the conversation may have gone:

SEO Guy: Bill, we should sign up for this call tracking. To summarize, it dynamically changes the website phone number to a different number, which then forwards to our number. Anyone who visits the website will only see this number, and we’ll 100% know that the call originated from online.

Bill: Interesting. So we get a new phone number just for our website?

SEO Guy: Yes. The number forwards to our local sales line, so the customer experience doesn’t change at all, but we’ll have stats. It even records the calls so we can listen back to them later.

Bill: So we can listen to the calls and see how our sales staff is handling them?

SEO Guy: Yep. You can even use it to see how ‘up to date’ our staff is with the website items, and you can track your website conversions separately from other ad campaigns.

Bill: What is this going to cost?

SEO Guy: It looks like there’s a $99 setup fee, and then a monthly fee of around $40. On top of that, we pay 10c per minute for the incoming calls.

Bill: So if you’re not really doing your job, I’ll know it because it won’t cost me much.

SEO Guy: I suppose you’re right. And if the Internet really is generating all that revenue, you’ll know it.  I can log into their interface and produce reports that will show exactly how many calls originated from the website, when they were, and even the phone numbers that they originated from.

Bill: What if I want another phone number for, say, our magazine ads? Can I track other ad streams too?

SEO Guy: Yeah. Each phone number costs an additional monthly fee, but adding these don’t incur additional setup fees. We can get local or toll-free numbers for the same price. So we can track the website, magazine ads and whatever else you want, and every phone call still rings here just like before.

Bill: Do it.

For the longest time, there was no real way to track leads that came from a website visitor who called instead of filling out a ‘contact us’ form. Since the website doesn’t actually sell the item (there’s no credit card or other purchase transaction online), ABC relies on the website to push those leads to their contact form or the telephone, which causes tracking problems.

Our new call tracking service fills this gap in the process. Now Bill knows that his SEO efforts are definitely paying off, and that his magazine ads are useless. His SEO guy is happy too, because Bill doesn’t fuss about writing him a check every month any more.

Our call tracking service is available whether or not you are an SEO client of ours. If you are an SEO, contact us about how you can partner with us to offer this to your clients as well.

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