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Google Releases AdWords Call-only Campaigns

At the end of February, Google announced the launch of the new AdWords ‘Call-only’ campaigns. These are specially designed to only show ads on smartphones where a call can be made from the search results, and is therefore important for any business where mobile search and call leads are important, so that every paid click can be a phone call to your company.

People are living their lives online and engaging with businesses in new ways. With smartphones in hand, consumers are increasingly looking for products or services while on the go and then placing a call right away. Google states that “70% of mobile searchers call a business directly from search results.”

This is why the new AdWords Call-only campaigns have been introduced, since they are a way for businesses to reach potential customers by prominently showing their phone number, business description and call button when people are searching. It’s uniquely built for businesses that value phone calls more than website clicks.

Many businesses may still prefer to display the link to the website as well as the phone number however, as consumers may wish to have a look at the website before they make the call. It’s still possible to show both the website link and the phone number through the call extension option in the standard AdWords campaigns, but the new ad type is now simpler to create and manage. Firstly, AdWords managers click to create ads, then they can drop down to choose the call-only ad type. There is still a ‘display URL’ which helps to show who users are calling, but this doesn’t link to the site as the ‘destination URL’ from an ad extension does.

This quick set-up can be a time-saver for advertisers and now replaces the existing option to just show the phone number in ads. The advantage of this is that it’s now possible to bid just for phone calls and since every click goes towards a phone call, it’s possible to design a bidding strategy based specifically on CPA or ROAS goal for calls. This helps maximize the value of every call to a business and will be of benefit to those companies that want to target the mobile searcher and encourage direct calls.

The disadvantage is that these Call-only campaigns may lead to a rise in the average cost-per-click for the calls, and as the ads are easier to set up there’s likely to be more competition for the calls than previously. Also, critically, when a click occurs and the number is loaded up on the searcher’s phone, the advertiser is charged, whether or not the call is made. So this may result in lost expenditure on wasted clicks and as such, should be closely monitored for a positive Return On Ad Spend.

If you want more details about these new Call-only campaigns and how they could impact your business, please contact us now.