Offline Conversions – Measuring Phone Calls

Posted by Chuck Bankoff On December - 16 - 2010

One thing that many businesses overlook is how important offline conversions are. When reviewing the success of your SEM program, you should remember that often times people find you on the internet, but choose to visit your place of business or simply call instead of using the internet to make their conversions. Offline conversions can be hard to track, but if you are not tracking them, the ROI data for your online campaign will not be accurate and might cause you to under-budget your SEM program.

Phone Lead Measuring Techniques:

Through our research and analysis, we have found a few effective methods to measure your phone leads that are a direct result of your online marketing. Here are a few of them:
Campaign On / Campaign Off: The way this method works is that you can see how many calls you are getting over a set period of time with your campaign on, and then turn it off and see if you are getting the same amount or fewer calls. You can do this a few times in order to really get an idea of where your phone calls are coming from.

Multiple Phone Numbers: When running a PPC campaign, the landing pages can have a different phone number than the rest of the site. The only down side to this is that occasionally an individual will find you through your PPC campaign, but then revisit the site using your main url. While this method is not 100% accurate, it provides and easy way to determine the general success of your marketing campaigns.
Telephone Tracking Software: This method can be extremely helpful especially when running mixed media campaigns. What it does is assign different unique phone numbers for each search engine. If you wanted to also track beyond media vendor, you can assign coupon codes or extensions at the listing level. You can also utilize pop up software that has the ability to initiate a call or voice chat that would be fielded by a sales person. The only downside to this method is that often people have pop up blockers enabled.

Dynamic Reverse Proxy: My personal preference is an intelligent system that that can differentiate the source of the visitor to the site. Depending on which source, the visitor will see a different phone number. Your phone would ring just as it normally does, but all the calls will be tracked, the phone number of the caller, and the length of time the call lasted will be recorded. Not only that, the actual voice conversation with your sales rep will be recorded as well for playback on demand.

Obviously phone calls that are generated from your Internet marketing efforts are among your top KPIs (Key Performance Indicators). Several of these methods are very easy and you can probably handle them yourself. You might want to seek the advice of a certified Digital Marketing Consultant to really leverage the techniques and technology.

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