If you are unfamiliar with call tracking, this is a solution that is widely used by marketers to track which advertisements are making the phone ring. A call tracking number is a unique phone number that you can assign to a specific marketing campaign so that when you receive a phone call, you know which advertisement was effective and invest more resources towards it. Simultaneously, you can tell which campaigns were a dud. Call tracking numbers can also be used when you are testing landing pages or your website to determine which CTAs are generating results. The benefits of using a call tracking solution is that it provides you with the data you need to adjust your marketing strategy to improve your results.

When it comes to SEO, however, you need to be careful in how you use this solution. Particularly when it comes to your business listings. Your name, address, and phone number (NAP) should be the same so that the search engines view your listings as having accurate data. While it could be useful to know if you are getting calls off of your Google local business listing vs. your Bing local listing, the risk of splitting your citation equity may not be worth it.

Instead, use call tracking numbers in ways that is effective and will not negatively harm your SEO. For example, when you are running an AdWords campaign, you can use call tracking numbers, Google extensions, or Google forwarding numbers. If you are running three ads, one with variations of the keyword “teeth cleaning”, another with “dental veneers”, and a third with “dental implants”, you could assign a unique tracking number to each one. That way if someone calls directly from your ad, you can tell which one led to offline conversions. That is the power of a call tracking number. Someone can see your information, pick up the phone, and you will know how they found out about you.

You can also use call tracking phone numbers on landing pages that you are optimizing. Many businesses do so when promoting a specific campaign. In the example of a local dentist, you may want to run a package promotion that offers dental implants at a discounted rate. Not wanting to lose full price business, a landing page can be used to advertise the promotion, attract new customers through organic SEO, and sell implants without disrupting normal business. In this case, a call tracking phone number should be used so that team members can tell how the customers came in contact with the dental office and offer the appropriately discounted rates.

Another benefit to call tracking comes from being able to test out the effectiveness of your website or of specific CTAs. By placing a unique phone number on each CTA, you can determine how far down the page people are reading and which offer or content leads them to act. Once you have finished testing your site, you can change the phone numbers back to the same one that is on your local business listings.

There are additional ways that call tracking numbers can be useful, including on offline advertising campaigns. When it comes to SEO, you should practice caution and be sure that your NAP is consistent across all platforms. For further assistance with SEO or call tracking, give us a call.