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Call Tracking – an Effective Business Tool

By: SmallBizClub

 

Smiling mid woman working as customer support operator with headset in a call center. Portrait of happy sales agent sitting at desk and looking at camera. Customer care support service representative.

Messengers, chatbots, email, online forms – every year, more and more communication channels emerge in the market for customer interaction. However, one of the most popular channels continues to be the telephone. In many small businesses, a significant portion of sales still occurs over the phone.

How do we accurately determine what exactly led to an order? It is necessary to track the effectiveness of all advertising channels to see the full path of the customer. Call tracking is designed for this purpose. The tool allows you to rationally allocate the advertising budget, reduce the cost of leads, and increase the number of sales.

In this article, we will explain in simple words what call tracking systems are, how they work, and what they are for. In addition, you will learn how to choose a cheap call-tracking service that will ensure small business success.

Call tracking: a Brief Overview

Call tracking is a tool for analytics, specifically for monitoring the sources of phone calls. It allows you to analyze the profitability of advertising campaigns and the effectiveness of the funds invested.

What is call tracking?

The principle of this technology involves assigning unique phone numbers to advertising channels or specific users. It works as follows:

Source: CallHippo

  1. A special code on the website substitutes the company’s regular phone number.
  2. A user calls the spoofed number to a call center operator.
  3. A call tracking program “reads” the session information and matches it with the client’s phone number.
  4. The reports for each call detail the source, channel, campaign, and keyword that led to the call. They also record information about the audio recording of calls, their duration, caller numbers, waiting time on the line, and so on.

You can send call data to Google Analytics or other systems with which integration is set up.

Types of Call Tracking

There are static and dynamic call-tracking methods. An optimal set of tools is selected for each type of advertising campaign.

Static 

Static call tracking allows for tracking static calls associated with the advertising channel. It is typically used for:

  • Outdoor advertising
  • Radio and TV
  • Cost-per-action networks

A unique phone number is statically assigned to each source. All calls are recorded in the system, and later, you can evaluate the viability of using a particular advertising channel and the overall effectiveness of small business marketing.

Dynamic 

Dynamic call tracking allows you to track dynamic customer sessions and the interaction format with advertising. It is typically used for:

  • Contextual advertising
  • Display advertising
  • Targeted advertising

After conducting specific measurements, a pool of phone numbers is allocated for dynamic assignment to each website visitor.

This type is convenient for tracking the advertising source and collects a lot of data down to the keyword.

There is also a combined one. This is the simultaneous use of both types. It is necessary in a situation where some advertising channels (for example, contextual advertising) require detailed information while others need only information about the source of advertising. This method reduces the number of phones and therefore reduces your costs.

What Data Can Be Tracked With Call Tracking?

The main purpose of call monitoring solutions is to provide information about calls, allowing for the correct allocation of priorities and advertising budgets when working with them.

Thanks to its comprehensive functionality, the system is capable of gathering the following data:

  • Call volume: Tracking the frequency of incoming calls allows you to identify specific patterns and improve call center efficiency. The call volume may double, for example, during promotions or sales. This indicates that operators may not handle such a high volume of calls, and there might not be enough call tracking numbers for all inquiries. In such cases, the company needs to bring in additional operators and purchase more call tracking numbers for that period.
  • Duration of each call: This helps understand which marketing channels lead to longer calls with detailed discussions and sales and which lead to very short calls. Typically, short calls do not result in sales.
  • Call time and geolocation: You can see the time and the cities or countries where most calls and hot leads originate. Based on this data, you can adjust advertising campaigns and implement new lead-nurturing techniques.
  • Landing page effectiveness: If you understand from which landing pages you get more calls that convert into sales, you can identify ineffective ones that need improvement.
  • Sales department efficiency: With the help of call tracking, you can track which managers convert the most leads into customers. This information will help to competently evaluate the work of each specialist and distribute calls among them.

Call data analysis helps to optimize business processes, increase the efficiency of marketing efforts, and improve lead conversion tactics. Thanks to this, customers will call more frequently, and the cost per call will decrease.

Why Does Business Need Call Analytics?

Inbound call tracking is a valuable tool for small companies with a call center or sales staff. It allows you to track the source of the call and improve business performance metrics. 

Any firm that relies on customer calls benefits from phone call analytics. We suggest you familiarize yourself with the capabilities of the technology.

Increasing the Number of Customers

You don’t have to invest extra in advertising to expand your customer base. It is enough to install and correctly set up a call tracking system and not miss calls. 

If there are still missed calls, it is necessary to control them:

  • Regularly check the report on missed unprocessed calls. It shows all calls that managers never called back.
  • Use email or SMS notifications for all missed calls to the manager.
  • Set up a forwarding scheme so that if none of the managers pick up the phone, the call will go to the sales manager.

Improving Advertising Campaigns

In 2023, digital advertising expenses in the United States will reach $270,73 billion, which is 12.9% more than in 2022.

Source: eMarketer

Call tracking is a way to know how every cent invested in advertising has served you. Thanks to this, you can evaluate the profitability of a particular advertising channel, conversion into requests and sales, the cost of attracting one lead or call, etc.

Integration of call tracking with other systems allows you to see the whole chain, from the first customer contact to purchase. As a result, you can identify the most effective campaigns and develop them, while unprofitable ones can be optimized or removed.

Marketing Optimization

With the help of call-tracking services, marketers can track the following:

  • Which campaigns and keywords lead to sales.
  • How the duration of calls influences sales effectiveness.
  • What their consumer profile looks like and what potential buyers want.
  • How the decision-making process for a purchase unfolds.

Most importantly, the technology makes it possible to choose suitable lead-generation tools and marketing strategies based on reliable statistical data rather than guesswork or hypotheses.

Improving Customer Service

As of the 2nd quarter of 2023, the average customer satisfaction rate in the United States is approximately 74,1%. This statistic shows that companies are committed to providing a high level of service. However, there are instances where they invest significant resources in customer acquisition, but they lose them due to rudeness and incompetence.

Сall tracking allows you to identify this problem and eliminate it. Audio recordings of telephone conversations will help. How do you work with them?

  • Selectively listen to conversations throughout the day.
  • Listen to recordings on problematic or long-playing deals and make recommendations on how to negotiate.
  • Supervise newcomers and train their more experienced colleagues on the audio recordings.

Selecting a Call Tracking Service for Effective Lead Tracking

The market offers numerous call attribution tools. To choose an option that allows you to optimize lead management strategies and enhance business growth techniques, it’s essential to pay attention to the following criteria:

Payment System

The standard is prepayment. However, many providers offer end-of-month billing. Notably, a significant portion of providers does not prominently advertise this option, but they readily accommodate it when proposals for post-payment arise.

Integration with External Services

It is convenient to use call tracking in conjunction with lead-generating software, as well as analytics and CRM systems. This approach allows you to expand marketers’ capabilities and increase the efficiency of lead-scoring methods.

Connection Speed

Some providers offer the ability to do everything independently and connect the service in as little as an hour, while with others, you can’t do without personal communication. This criterion is especially crucial for small businesses that need the service here and now.

Substitution of the Number Considering Geolocation

It is relevant for firms that work with clients from different regions and countries. With this feature, the system shows users numbers with the code of their region. Thus, you can adjust customer engagement strategies.

Add Additional Numbers Independently

When the planned traffic volume is exceeded, the faster you add numbers to your pool, the more accurate your statistics will be. If this operation is performed through a manager, it will take longer.

Common Mistakes in Working with Call Tracking

It’s not uncommon for a company to use a lead tracking system but not achieve the desired results. This is often due to mistakes made by marketers and specialists in their use of the service, which can skew call statistics and lead to incorrect business decisions.

Using a Single Number Across Multiple Sources

For instance, a marketer links a call tracking number to an online advertising source. Then, they inadvertently also use the same number on a business card distributed by a sales manager. Consequently, calls from people who saw the number on the business card and online will be included in the statistics for the advertising source, leading to inaccurate data.

Disabling Ineffective Campaigns

Call tracking helps evaluate advertising effectiveness. However, if you identify a source generating a few calls, it’s not advisable to immediately disable it. Sometimes, lowering bids on specific keywords can reduce lead acquisition costs.

Recording of Calls That Did Not Result in a Sale

Only a portion of calls result in sales and meaningful customer interactions. Categorizing calls and focusing on the most crucial ones is essential. Otherwise, it might appear that advertising is working well because there are many calls. In reality, some calls may be about office supplies delivery or from people who dialed the wrong number – these are not leads.

Such mistakes can lead to the misconception that call tracking doesn’t work, doesn’t provide conversion rate optimization, or doesn’t increase company sales and revenue. Therefore, efforts should be made to avoid these errors.

Final Thoughts

Call tracking is a unique technology that provides an initial and fairly accurate assessment of your marketing and overall business effectiveness. The key is to select a tool that ensures affordable call management and effective sales funnel management.

Furthermore, it’s crucial to avoid mistakes when working with the system for data-driven decision-making to be accurate. Utilize the benefits of this technology to develop your business.

Published: October 25, 2023
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SmallBizClub.com is dedicated to providing small businesses and entrepreneurs the information and resources they need to start, run, and grow their businesses. The publication was founded by successful entrepreneur and NFL Hall of Fame QB Fran Tarkenton. We bring you the most insightful thinking from industry leaders, veteran business owners, and fellow entrepreneurs. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

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