If you’re a marketer, it’s safe to assume that you have an intimate relationship with Google’s advertising and analytics suite. And with eMarketer predicting that the internet giant will generate almost $40 billion in US digital ad sales in 2018, you won’t be breaking up with Google anytime soon.

If your company does business over the phone, you’ve probably dabbled in Google click-to-call ads, which make it dead simple for people to call directly from a search ad. With mobile search continuing to surge, and calls to businesses surpassing 162 billion by next year, it’s no surprise that Google has continued to invest in this functionality.

We published 10 Ways To Succeed With Google Call-Only Campaigns a couple years ago, but wanted to do a quick refresh highlighting some of Google’s newest click-to-call features, in addition to how you can supercharge your campaigns by integrating Adwords (now Google Ads) with the Invoca call intelligence platform.

Extensions available for call-only ads:

Extensions have played a big part in the optimization of text ads as they help to provide more context than the ad titles and descriptions, often leading to a boost when it comes to click-through rate. Google recently introduced three extensions for call-only ads as well. The extension types include: location extensions, call-out extensions, and structured snippets. According to Search Engine Land, Google has reported a click-through rate improvement of 10 percent “on average” when companies have tested these extensions with call-only ads.

Example of a call-only ad extension.

Location-specific numbers:

About six months following the launch of location extensions, Google announced that they would start showing local-specific phone numbers when location extensions appeared in ads. This announcement spooked marketers who rely on calls going to a central phone number for conversion tracking and other reasons. However, call extensions will still appear unchanged when location extensions do not show, which is the overwhelming majority of the time. We wrote more about the change here, and what we recommend for Invoca customers.

Automated call extensions:

This feature impacts advertisers that do not yet use call extensions but have a strong call-to-action to place a phone call. In these cases, Google will pull the phone number from the advertiser’s landing page and automatically create a call extension that forwards calls to that landing page phone number. Invoca recommends that our customers opt out of automated call extensions, so you can continue to easily track and report on calls within Invoca. You can find instructions for doing so here.

Enhanced call-level reporting:
Google added new call details to the keyword and ad copy reports, including additional columns for “Phone impressions” and “Phone calls” to give marketers a more complete view of call performance and help them see where there are opportunities to improve. For example, consider using call-only ads on keywords with the highest phone-through rates, or implementing a different call treatment to send the caller to a priority queue for keywords driving a high volume of phone conversions.

But I want more!

As you can see, Google has steadily been broadening its click-to-call feature set, however it’s still a fairly lightweight solution for marketers who place a high value on phone calls. If you’re committed to calls as a main point of contact with your customers, you’ll want a solution (Invoca, ahem) with more sophisticated capabilities such as:

  • Call attribution from all marketing sources (not just paid search)
  • Integrations with CRM and marketing automation or analytics solutions so you can connect calls to the digital customer journey
  • Conversation insights that can be uncovered and applied in real-time to improve the customer experience and drive revenue

Invoca’s integration with AdWords Offline Conversions API seamlessly pulls in Signal AI data to give marketers a new layer of insights into the types of calls and callers that keywords are driving. Signal AI analyzes the entire context of the conversation for language patterns, and identifies customer intent and behavior as well as the outcome of the call. Having this data feed right into AdWords in real time enables marketers to more precisely optimize their search campaigns for not only more calls, but calls that have a high probability of converting and resulting in revenue.

Colin Hart, senior media manager at Performics, commented, “Invoca’s integration of Signal AI with AdWords Offline Conversions gives us unprecedented visibility into the types of calls and callers certain keywords are driving. For one of our insurance clients, we can see which keywords are driving calls resulting in quote inquiries, and immediately use that data to optimize their campaigns directly in AdWords, in real time. This level of customization opens up a new world of possibilities for search marketers driving call conversions.”

Click here to learn more about Invoca for AdWords.

 

Laura Schierberl

Posted by Laura Schierberl

Laura Schierberl is director of content marketing and communications at Invoca. Prior to that she held positions at Oracle, Responsys and Hill & Knowlton where she honed her skills in all things PR, content and social media. Laura earned a B.A. in Spanish and Communications at Wake Forest University. Fun facts: she loves crime TV shows and her labrador has dabbled in modeling.

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