What are Google Ads Call-Only ads?
Google Ads (formerly AdWords) call-only ads are ads that can only appear on mobile and when clicked, call the number specified. A normal ad would take you to a specific webpage, but these ads can only call a specific number.
How Does an Google Ads Call-Only Ad Work?
A call-only ad works similarly to a normal ad, except that instead of a destination URL (where someone is taken to after they click the ad), there is a destination phone number that someone calls when they click the ad.
These ads have a phone number and the business name in the headline, instead of normal ad copy.
Just like normal text ads, the only time you’ll be charged for these ads is when someone clicks. With call-only ads that means whenever someone makes a call.
Call-only ads can be set up in any normal search campaign or you can set them up in their own “Call-Only” campaign. Which is another campaign type (alongside Standard, All Features, Mobile App Engagement and Dynamic).
The benefit to running your call-only ads in a call-only campaign is that you’re able to directly set the price you want to pay for calls. IE, since the campaign only contains ads and keywords that allow prospects to call, the Max CPC bid you set, is the max amount you’ll pay per phone call. Alternatively, if you have call-only ads set up in a normal campaign, you’re bidding on both possible phone calls and possible clicks to your website.
Who Uses Call-Only Ads?
Any business that’s looking to encourage phone calls over website visits on mobile should use call-only ads. Yes, you always have the option of showing a normal text ad with a call extension, but if your primary goal is to drive phone calls, running a call-only ad is your best bet.
There are of course exceptions. Maybe you’re in a highly competitive space and you want to encourage website visits before calls in order to build trust and credibility, before encouraging a phone call. For other advertisers however, a florist, a plumber or maybe a dentist – call-only ads are a great way to encourage calls (over website clicks) and quickly put prospective customers in touch with your business.
How to Set Up a Call-Only Ad:
If you’re setting up a call-only ad in a normal campaign, you’d start by clicking the red “+AD” button from within your Ad Group of choice, then selecting “Call-Only Ad.” This process is very similar to setting up a normal ad with some slight differences. Mainly, there is no destination URL and Google is asking for your business name (in order to display it next to the phone number in your headline). You’ll also need to input a phone number to direct the call to and two website URLs. One URL will just be displayed in your ad, the other will be used to verify that the number used in your ad is also on your website.
If you’re using a call tracking number that does not appear on your site, you’ll need to add an Ads tracking code onto your site in order for Google to verify the site is yours. This can be any code generated from Ads, but the most common would be remarketing and conversion codes.
While this slightly complicates the call-only ad setup process, it’s always in your best interest to use a call tracking number so you can take advantage of features like call recording and CallScore.