Evolve Vacation Rental Network redefines vacation rental management, providing marketing, booking and support services to help homeowners get their homes rented without the high commissions of traditional management firms. But CallRail redefined how this organization viewed its customer acquisition strategy, after the firm used the technology to discover a significant recent shift in conversions driven from mobile sources versus online.

The Challenge

Evolve needed more visibility into the performance of their marketing. Originally, they were not tracking the source of leads that were coming in by phone. “Candidly, we didn’t remain in that situation for long, because we knew we wanted that visibility,” stated Brian Becker, Vice President for Evolve. “To address this, we started using CallRail for the majority of our initiatives, because we found that CallRail enabled us to accurately track our lead sources, and also our online keyword campaigns, when it relates to pay-per-click (PPC) responders who are calling us.”

The CallRail Solution

When Evolve Vacation Rental Network initiates a campaign through online PPC, direct mail, or a print ad, a custom phone number is assigned to that campaign through CallRail, which enables the firm to know exactly where their leads are coming from. In the case of PPC, they can gain insight on whether the ads are generating online traffic or phone calls.

“I think the biggest thing for us is that we’re very focused on understanding our acquisition cost for any campaign, and making sure it’s in line with a scalable amount,” said Becker. “With that visibility, we can either continue the campaign, or cut it off, if it’s not meeting our acquisition goal. Without CallRail, our ability to track that information accurately is significantly hindered. It makes campaigns seem as if they’re not converting as well as they actually might be. At a high level, that’s really the primary benefit of CallRail—it gives us a much better ability to get a true understanding of our acquisition cost, and link it to a particular campaign.”

Defining the Power of Mobile Communication

One of the biggest revelations provided by CallRail is the shift from online to mobile. Where phone calls were once waning and online communications growing, the current mindset of consumers has come full circle with mobile device. “We’re getting more engagement over the phone through mobile users compared to online requests,” explained Becker. “Our ability to understand this through CallRail has been a game changer. We can now truly determine if we have a winning keyword, which has allowed us to continue running a campaign or even increase our spend when appropriate.”

How powerful is this trend? Two years ago, the percentage of inbound traffic for the firm from a mobile device was below 20%. It has now grown to over 50%. Evolve also discovered that they are converting leads at twice the rate over the phone compared to online leads.

“It really shines a light on how important it is for us to try to get prospects to engage with us over the phone,” stated Becker. “If they’re not talking to one of our Homeowner Consultants, it’s very difficult for us to sign owners up for our services. We realized how important it is to engage with people over the phone, as opposed to trying to push them through online channels, because we noticed a much higher conversion rate with phone inquiries.”