Service and eCommerce clients finally track telephone calls as easily as web inquiries

NYC SEM, a New York search marketing agency, delivers massive ROI to their clients through search engine marketing—the only challenge was proving it. While the firm could demonstrate ROI clearly when tracking product purchases through a client’s online shopping cart, advertising that resulted in phone calls was more difficult to track. A clear line needed to be drawn from search visitor to phone lead to transaction in order to show clients the value of their search investment.

“The biggest gap that I had with both my professional services clients and my eCommerce clients was not being able to close the loop when a customer picks up the phone,” shared Darren Carter, MD and Principal of NYC SEM. Carter tapped CallRail to see if their call tracking platform, which is trusted by 10,000 companies, could work for his agency’s needs.

How CallRail Works

CallRail enables NYC SEM to deploy a trackable phone number that is unique to each source of inbound leads, enabling the agency to understand if specific campaigns are paying off. They also use call recording to understand how leads are handled once a customer or prospect calls into a business. “From an implementation standpoint, the client never sees anything,” explained Carter. “It’s unbelievable how seamless it is.”

As soon as a call is finished, both Darren Carter and the client receive an email with the recorded session of the call. Carter customizes the email notifications based on keyword triggers to know if someone is responding to a specific search campaign.

“This helps immensely in showing return on ad spend for the client,” he said. “Call recording is also a big feature for many of these clients, as this is a capability that many of their phone systems did not have. They can listen to calls and see if their representatives are really handling calls properly.

CallRail in Action

A linen sheet manufacturer’s primary business model was eCommerce. They were already doing extremely well with their search campaigns, with a 500-800% return on their investment. But several types of products were very challenging in terms of demonstrating a return on ad spend.“In particular, there was a linen duvet cover that was at a price point and had a level of customization that almost always required a level of interaction with staff at the business,” explained Carter. “With these items never showing up in the shopping cart, I could never prove the effectiveness of my campaigns.”

Carter deployed CallRail and on the very first week, they tracked a call with a customer having a very detailed conversation about the duvet covers. “I could immediately see that all the sales for these products were happening over the phone and I would never have been able to measure this through web conversions,” stated Carter.

The client was spending $1000/month on duvet cover search ads. In the first week alone, they were able to cover the investment. “They could have thrown away something that appeared completely useless, when in fact it was very valuable,” declared Carter.

NYC SEM experienced similar results with an LED bulb manufacturer and The Montessori School in New York City. In each case Darren’s team could prove how each client’s campaigns were performing even in the absence of a web purchase. In the case of the school, he was able to create three separate tracking scripts to dynamically display phone numbers for each unique campus. Now the school knows exactly how the campaigns for each campus are performing.

CallRail Delivers New Insight into Customer Behavior

NYC SEM plans to expand its use of call tracking through printed cards with unique phone numbers that can be handed out at tradeshows to track the effectiveness of specific campaigns. They also plan to utilize CallRail’s ability to integrate directly into a client’s CRM platform to better define the value of specific campaigns in real conversions and resulting revenue. “There’s just no end to how you can use CallRail and these tracking numbers,” Carter concluded.

Darren Carter sums up the value of CallRail over traditional web analytics this way: “With Google, customer data is anonymous. You cannot track per user traffic to a website. With CallRail, when someone calls, I can match that caller to a specific search keyword. I can see their path through the website and their entire call history. This is incredibly valuable data for conversion optimization efforts. It’s an insight into the customer journey simply not available from other applications.”

“I love the flexibility of being able to track whatever we want. We can record all calls, or just SEM calls to make it more cost effective. This is something that I pitch to every client that I engage with search marketing services. At this price point, it just makes sense. It’s completely affordable for small businesses.”

  • Great article. CallRail is a super user friendly platform. I like the Javascript Dynamic Number Insertion, a must use feature for SEO agencies.