In September 2014, Google Ads released its own call tracking service, which it refers to as a “website call conversions” tool. Like Google Analytics, it’s completely free to use. But is it necessarily the best option? Here we take a look at how Google Call Tracking works, and how it compares to other call tracking services.
How “Website Call Conversions” Services Work
Google Call Tracking, like other call tracking services, uses Dynamic Number Insertion (DNI) technology. This allows the main phone number on your website to be overridden by a different number unique to an individual visitor, specific ad campaign, geographical area or other options of your choosing.
By tracking this individual number, it allows you to see the journey that led each visitor to make their call, such as which ad campaign they clicked on, which keywords were used in an organic search, or even how many pages of your website they looked at before they made their call.
This is a vital tool for marketers in working out the Return on Investment (ROI) of each ad campaign, allowing you to allocate your budget in the most effective way.
What are the Disadvantages of Google Call Tracking?
It Only Works for Google Ads
Google Call Tracking can only track calls generated by Pay Per Click (PPC) campaigns. These normally form only a small part of a company’s marketing activity. If a call is generated by a different campaign, such as an SEO or social media campaign, Google Call Tracking is unable to trace its source.
This is severely limiting, as you need to be able to calculate the success of all your marketing activities.
It doesn’t include Call Recording
Google has not installed Call Recording, even though many other call tracking services offer it. Call Recording is highly important as it allows you to monitor customer trends and preferences, as well as the quality of service your
It only offers Toll-Free Numbers
Google Call Tracking only offers you toll-free numbers for DNI purposes, so if you wanted a local or premium rate number to be displayed this isn’t possible with Google. This can put you at a disadvantage, especially if you get most of your business from your local area, as people are much more likely to call a number with their own area code if they’re looking for a local service.
Premium rate numbers can be useful if your business is national or international, as it makes your operation appear large and professional. While a toll-free number will be attractive to some callers, it is not always the right option for your purpose.
Google doesn’t keep statistics of missed calls
If you’re only using Google Call Tracking, you won’t be able to trace any missed calls that have taken place as a result of your PPC campaign, as Google doesn’t keep records of them. This can lose you customers as you don’t have the ability to call them back, so they could go to one of your competitors instead.
Google Call Tracking doesn’t integrate with CRM Systems
As Google Call Tracking is unable to integrate with your CRM system, it means you cannot have all your data to hand in one easily accessible place.
It’s Unable to Determine the Uniqueness of a Phone Call
In order to analyse the effectiveness of a campaign, it’s vital to know how many of your calls were from new leads and how many were returning visitors. Google Call Tracking is unable to provide this information, leaving you at a disadvantage when it comes to targeting your PPC efforts.
What alternatives are available?
Ruler Analytics Call Tracking provides your business with a complete solution. It offers you:
- Your choice of local, premium rate or toll-free numbers
- The ability to track calls generated by all of your marketing campaigns including PPC, SEO and social media
- Call recording
- Missed calls
- Whether a call was from a unique lead; for each call, it can provide the caller’s number, how long the call lasted and even how long it took to answer
- The ability to integrate with your CRM system and Google Ads, so it won’t cause you problems switching if you’re currently using Google.
Get in touch
For further information about Ruler Analytics and how our Call Tracking software could benefit you and your business, please get in touch; and for more news and insights don’t forget to follow Ruler Analytics on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.