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How to Track Offline Phone Calls as Conversions in AdWords

In AdWords, a conversion is used to track if your ads are leading to sales, leads, app downloads (or pretty much anything you can think of). But what about phone calls to your business?

Imagine someone searches for your services or products on Google, clicks on your ad, ends up on your landing page and picks up their home/office phone to call you. You'd have no idea if your AdWords campaign led to call.

Of course, you could manually track these and import them into AdWords, use call-only ads, or ad extensions, but this isn't what this article will focus on. 

What Is A Google Forwarding Phone Number?

The Google Forwarding Phone Number is your ticket to tracking those offline phone calls as conversions. When you add this feature to your website, the regular phone number displayed on your site will be dynamically updated to the Google Forwarding Number.

What does this mean? Example time!

Organic Search vs. Paid Search Examples

Organic Search:

  1. User runs a search on Google and finds your website organically, without clicking on an ad.
  2. Your landing page displays your phone number. Let's say its (514) 123-4567.
  3. The user picks up their phone and calls that number.
  4. No conversion is tracked.

Paid Search Using Google Forwarding Number:

  1. User runs a search on Google and clicks on your AdWords ad to access your site.
  2. Your landing page displays your phone number. Let's say its (514) 123-4567, but because the Google Forwarding Number script is installed, your visitor does not see your regular phone number and instead it's replaced in real-time by a Google generated forwarding number.
  3. The user picks up their phone and calls that number. The call is then forwarded to your regular number.
  4. The action is then tracked as a conversion depending on attributes you've set.

Google Forwarding Number Availability

Click here to check if this feature is available in your country.

How To Setup Google Forwarding Number Conversion

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  1. In your AdWords account, go to your conversion actions page.
  2. Click on the Conversion button and select Phone Calls then Calls to a phone number on your website, then continue.
  3. On the next page, name your conversion and select its attributes. You can assign a monetary value, call length time and more, according to your needs.
  4. Save and continue.
  5. In the next step, enter your phone number in the box exactly as it appears on your website. If your website shows (xxx) xxx-xxxx, then make sure it is entered the same way. Click to generate the tag.
  6. Next, you'll have to insert the script that Google generated on your website between the <head></head>.
  7. Make sure to configure your call extensions, otherwise this won't work.
  8. Save and test.

Use This To Optimize Your Campaigns

By analyzing your call reporting data, you might notice that calls of a certain duration or from a certain area code are leading to conversions. You could then modify the call length attribute on in your conversion settings to better reflect call conversions, or adjust your bid for the location that is driving more sales.


Questions or Comments?

Questions about this article or AdWords in general, please feel free to contact me.

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