Man talking on his mobile phone after clicking on an ad. This is an example of pay-per-call advertising. There was a time when the main objective of a business was to get someone to actually call rather than expecting them to “click” to complete a purchase or “submit” a form requesting service. Thanks to an increased desire among consumers to actually talk with a real person, the idea of placing emphasis on a phone number is again appealing. This is one of the reasons why pay-per-call advertising is catching on big time.

How Pay-Per-Call Works

The concept of pay-per-call has been around since 2005, but it’s becoming increasing prevalent due to the increased use of smartphones and other mobile devices. Similar to pay-per-click in some ways, pay-per-call requires a partnership between an advertiser and a publisher. The selected publisher will then apply a unique tracking number to each campaign. The publisher will take care of displaying the ads with the different numbers. Each call received is tracked and the results are reported back to the advertiser. The publisher will receive a commission for all qualified calls.

What the Caller Experiences

Calls can be routed to a call center or directly back to the advertiser.

Most of the time, regardless of whether or not a call center is involved, a caller will not notice any difference between calling a company directly and going through a pay-per-call campaign to reach that same business since most customers have no idea such a campaign is even going on behind the scenes.

Why Calling Matters

Research suggests mobile searchers, a growing segment of the buying public, tend to make a decision faster when they have a click-to-call option to get connected to a person. More than 60 percent of mobile searches result in a call to a business, so there may be something to the theory that the psychology behind making a purchase decision from a mobile device is different than the thought process behind a desktop transaction.

Benefits of Pay-Per-Call

Pay-per-call allows for more control over costs and provides greater access to data from various campaigns since you can clearly determine which campaigns are generating the most interest and the most conversions. Research shows that pay-per-call can generate about 200 percent more leads than cold calling. Conversations initiated through a pay-per-call effort also tend to last longer and result in more conversions. Psychologically, it’s also easier to make a connection with a customer during a phone conversation.

Why People Prefer to Call

For the past few decades, it’s been assumed that people would rather click than call to complete a transaction since it’s more convenient. While this may be true in many situations, some transactions benefit from the added involvement of a real person. People often make a call because they have questions about something they see on a website or in an ad and they prefer to get an immediate answer or they’re not finding what they want on a website.

Pay-per-call will likely be one part of your overall marketing strategy, although it can still significantly boost your ROI and improve your reputation among customers. Pay-per-call campaigns are often combined implemented online, although campaigns can also be successful with offline advertising methods involving television, radio, and print media. Regardless of how a pay-per-calll campaign is executed, results can be easily tracked to determine what’s working for you.


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