Have you heard of call tracking? We’re not talking about the NSA—we’re talking about a service that keeps track of your small business’s incoming calls. Some online advertising companies recently are boasting about the call-tracking services they offer to clients. But what exactly is call tracking? And how valuable is it to your small business’s online advertising needs? That’s what we’ll tackle in this edition of “Prospect Genius Reviews…”
Let’s get started!
First, let’s talk about how call tracking works. There are many different types of programs out there, but here’s the gist: You connect one specific phone number to your call-tracking program, and that program keeps track of all the incoming calls you receive on that phone line. Your program may even record the phone conversations on this line, too.
Typically, calling-tracking services assign a unique phone number for your campaign. You can include this number on a specific ad, flyer, directory listing, or website to see how many calls are generated by each platform. It’s an accurate, straightforward way to determine the value of your efforts.
So if you have an online marketing campaign that uses call tracking, you’ll be able to see exactly how many incoming calls you receive from the campaign. In other words, you’re able to precisely measure the effectiveness of your campaign.
That’s why “Prospect Genius Reviews” strongly recommends finding an online advertising company that offers call-tracking service. Without it, it’s very difficult to discern how well your investment is actually paying off. Why would you want to continue paying for an advertising campaign if you can’t be certain whether your calls are coming from this campaign or something else?
Beyond ROI concerns, however, call tracking offers additional practical benefits, as well. For example:
- You can use call tracking to listen to recorded conversations between your employees and customers. This helps you keep tabs on how effective your customer service and sales reps are and allows you to determine where they can improve.
- You can also use these recordings to develop a sales plan. By going back and listening to customers, you can take notes on what types of services people are repeatedly asking about.
- You can use call data to identify the specific days and hours when you receive the highest volume of calls. Having this knowledge will help you plan your staff scheduling, i.e. when you need to be available to answer the phone versus when you can load up on off-site jobs.
- You can use your call log as your business’s contacts list. Caller info is stored in your log, making it easy for you to follow up with customers.
The results of using call tracking are overwhelmingly positive. However, we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention the few downsides some small businesses may encounter. These include:
- Having to use a call-tracking phone number, separate from your own, for your online promotions.
- Losing all the advertising tied to your call-tracking number if you end your campaign.
- Having to go through all of your listings and update your phone number if you end your campaign.
Sure, these downsides may cause a headache or two, but we think the benefits of call tracking far outweigh the negatives.
If you’re a small, local service provider on the hunt for an online advertiser, you’ll want to make call tracking a top priority. Any online advertising company or local SEO provider worth its salt will offer call tracking because it’s a transparent way to demonstrate value. If a company doesn’t offer it, then that company probably isn’t too confident in the ROI it delivers. Run away.
(Full disclosure: Prospect Genius includes call tracking in many of our online advertising services.)
Stay tuned for the next installment of “Prospect Genius Reviews…,” when we’ll discuss the free content-inspiration tool Answer the Public.