Mobile Insights: Click-to-call proves a valuable addition to the advertising mix

Wednesday, May 25, 2011 | 7:41 AM

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Here’s the second post in our Mobile Insights series, featuring expert views from members of our mobile ads business. Welcome this week’s guest contributor, Anjali Vaidya, an Account Manager on the mobile ads team who shares her experiences on our Click-to-call (CTC) offering in mobile ads.

We’re continually making enhancements to the Click-to-call ad format. Launched in early 2010, CTC allows mobile consumers searching Google or visiting sites in the Google Display Network, to click on the phone number and speak to someone who can explain more about the product or service. 

One enhancement was our Call-only format to allow advertisers to receive only calls, instead of clicks, to their website. Starting this week, we’re making the Call-only format even better by including a phone icon and moving the phone number above the ad.



The convenience and immediacy of CTC for users has made it one of Google’s fastest-growing advertising solutions. Click-to-call is a great addition to the advertising mix. You can still drive searchers to your website, but it gives you other advantages:
  • it’s a great option if you don’t yet have a mobile-optimized website; 
  • it captures consumers who are ready to act; 
  • it allows you to drive traffic to a strong call center, giving you a competitive edge over other online advertisers.
We’re generating millions of calls every month on mobile devices and the number of advertisers using phone extensions is growing quickly. The uptake for CTC is fast because advertisers are realizing great returns.
  • Home security provider Defender Direct gets 75-80% of online advertising clicks using Click-to-call. Four out of their top 10 campaigns in terms of clicks are now mobile. And the calling customers  are ready to consult with an expert about the ins and outs of alarm systems. Once the company started targeting high-end smartphones, their returns from mobile ads and CTC skyrocketed. Results were soon double what they got from desktop search. Today, Google mobile ads constitute 24% of the company’s overall online budget.
  • When auto insurance company Esurance started using mobile ads and CTC they found that they could acquire customers at 20-30% less cost compared with other channels. Esurance wanted to put interested people in touch with agents or claims representative in a few simple steps. Reaching the company is faster and easier for customers, and a less expensive way to acquire leads for Esurance. Calls coming from CTC mobile ads are more likely to result in sales.
  • The Carphone Warehouse has had great success with mobile ads CTC too. The UK mobile phone retailer created a mobile website where visitors can search for headset details and price plans. They used Mobile Ad Sitelinks to provide deep links into the site and incorporated CTC in ads to allow users to reach a call center agent to get advice or buy.
Our advice? Test Click-to-call, whether you’re a national or local business, to see how it can generate sales. Our customers have shown us that mobile searchers will research your products on their phones, and they appreciate the convenience of calling from that same device. Once they call, they are even closer to purchase. Your best leads are only a phone call away, try Click-to-call today!


Posted by Anjali Vaidya, Google Account Manager for Mobile Ads

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