Use Call Tracking Software To Gain Insights and Increase Customer Conversions
A key component to any marketing strategy is trackability. One area that is often overlooked by local businesses is tracking the number of phone calls that come in. This is a huge mistake! However, it is pretty easy to solve with a call tracking software solution. We’ll break down the features and benefits of a good call tracking solution, and share the best practices that we’ve compiled over the years – both from using this technology ourselves, and with the hundreds of clients we’ve worked with. It’s surprisingly affordable, and the benefits are numerous!
- Why you should use call tracking software
- What is call tracking software
- How to use call tracking and recording to measure your results
- How to establish a baseline of leads you’re currently getting
- How to obtain a phone number for any area code
- Using tracking phone numbers to measure marketing campaigns
- Using tracking phone numbers to test market in specific cities
- How to use call recordings to train your sales and service teams
- How to increase your sales conversions using call recordings
- Best practices for efficient call reviewing as a manager or owner
- How to alert your team of new customer calls with “whispers”
- How to use call recordings to find new product or service opportunities
- Using call tracking software instead of a notepad when you’re mobile
- How to leverage call data to develop call handling scripts or talking points
Thanks for Listening!
Here is a preview of the transcription from Episode 11 – How Call Tracking Software Can Increase Your New Customer Conversions;
Bob: One, I want to tell the story of how we saved $18,000 with call tracking.
Jesse: Hey everyone, welcome back to Local SEO Tactics. Jesse Dolan here with Bob Brennan. Today we’re going to jump a little bit outside of the usual SEO platform. In the previous episodes, we spent a lot of focus talking about how to design your webpages, how to get your site ranked, and a lot of the tips there. We’re gonna be circling back to that in future episodes. But, as we’ve talked, we’re here to help local service businesses. It’s not just about getting your website ranked and found. You wanna turn those into customers that are going to pay you money for your products and services that you’re offering. So, today we’re going to talk about handling phone calls, and some of the tools, and things that we use for that.
Bob: Yeah, this is a tools’ episode.
Bob: It’s really tools that’ll help you, again, like you said, convert. We’re going to be talking primarily about call tracking, and how important it is as a tool. Because again, as a small business you’re going to spend all this time and energy to get people to ring you up, so to speak, and it’s going to get handed off to your team.
This topic gets a little weird. When I was first looking at this product, and we were first looking it over, I just felt strange because they didn’t want to be the big brother, so to speak, listening to everybody’s conversation.
Bob: It’s a little different because, when you really get into this, down the road and you really understand what it costs, a lot of times we figure out our average cost per call, costs to us in raw marketing, is probably anywhere from $20 to $30.
Bob: Well, that adds up pretty quick and it adds up real quick if you’re not converting and you’re not closing.
Bob: So, you kind of have a vested interest in getting this stuff down real well and that’s where these tools come in.
Jesse: We should say too, that’s not even … we’re not talking about pay-per-click advertising or …
Jesse: … we’re not paying for those customers, but when you look at all the time, energy, and money that you put out there just to get those phone calls …
Jesse: … that’s a real number.
Bob: And handing that call over to somebody in your team who doesn’t realize that, is kind of like handing your kid $20 bills everyday just for the heck of it and they just think money grows on trees.
Bob: Again, I’m not trying to put your team under the bus, it’s just your job, as managers and leaders, is to build them up, help you help them help themselves. And we’ll get into that probably next episode. But really, give them the tools so they can polish their craft and their trade, and ideally close a lot of these calls.
Jesse: I think it’s important to note too that for the most part, for being a local service business, the owner or the manager isn’t always the one answering the phone, almost by definition or even by nature, right?
Jesse: We’d like to think that we’re the bees-knees when we answer the phone, nobody does it better than us, but you’re not gonna be there for every phone call. So, even if you are part of the time or even for the majority, these things we’re gonna talk about today are still applicable because you’re just not gonna answer every phone call and somebody else is gonna be handling them.
Bob: Yeah, and I wanna talk about a lot of the mistakes I made with this tool, because this is a tool that can be used incorrectly and when it is …
Bob: … it’s not good, it’s not good at all, and I made a lot of those mistakes. And really, I think as business owners we really wanna control a lot of things. We’ll give directions to our team and they really only have two choices, and that’s to either comply or defy, right?
Bob: If you’re defiant all the time, then you’re not doing your job properly and you’re not coaching them properly to handle the call, so to speak.
Bob: There’s a lot of good reasons why to use a call tracking program or service, and we’ll hit on a couple of those.
The first one I’m gonna cover is to create a baseline. So a lot of times you’ll launch these campaigns and you’ll say, “Hey are they working?” You really, actually, before you launch the campaign, you need to think ahead if you can 30 days or so, enact the call tracking on your website or even your main number and have it work that way to say, “Okay, we average 80 calls a month.” And you enact some kind of marketing campaign, whether it’s developing your SEO or Google AdWords, or Facebook, or whatever the case is. And then you can measure that metric and say, “You know, we had a Facebook campaign and we got five extra calls.” Well great, what did that cost you? “Well it cost us $1,000.” Well that’s $200 a call.
Jesse: Might not have worked very good.
Bob: Right. You better be selling some pretty good stuff to get ROI on that. Again, creating that baseline. Then from there, really any new campaign you come up with, you wanna assign this tracking number to it. Again, under the same guise. What’s our ROI? Are we getting good ROI on it? And/or what kind of customers calling in off this specific campaign?
Jesse: Right. Can I ask you a question and back up just a second?
Jesse: Cause I don’t think we covered it right on the front side. What is call tracking? If nobody’s using that right now, what is that? What does it even mean?
Bob: That’s a good question. I’ll get into that in a little bit and then I want you to jump in.
Bob: Cause you’re more the technical guy. But it’s really recording the calls that come in. And it can give you information such as, specifically who’s calling, if they have caller ID. It can give you, obviously, the length of the call, their phone number. And, what’s really slick about this technology is, it’s all recorded and it’s put in a WAV file and it’s stored on a program and, in some cases, it’s sent out to your email, so you’re made aware of who’s calling or what the length of the call is. Or, if you have a key manager or key people on your team that need to see that, it can be sent out to them. That’s kind of it in a nutshell.
Bob: If you can add some of the other?
Jesse: No, I think that’s a great overview. Some of the more technical tidbits is, this number replaces the phone number on your website. This can be applicable to pretty much anything but particularly we’re talking in this example on your website. That’s where it all starts. You have to put it out there for people to be able to call you. So, whatever your current phone number is, if you’ve got a tracking number, you’re going to have to go to some kind of third party service that’s provisioned a phone number for you.
Jesse: You can usually pick whatever area code you want or an 800 number. Usually you’re going to pick whatever area code you’re in and find a number that’s similar or, depending on how your metropolitan area is laid out. Up in the Twin Cities here, we have four basically area codes that define our area. And, depending on which area code you’re using, we kind of know if you’re Southwest, Northeast corner of the metro and things like that. So you can put some logic into it for that, and you replace that phone number on your website with this tracking phone number. And then, whenever somebody calls that number, you can forward it to wherever you want.
Jesse: You can still have these calls coming to your main receptionist desk, if you have one or wherever the calls are going, that doesn’t change. All that really changes, if you have a tracking number, is the number that the customers are calling in on.
Jesse: So, after that, the service that you’re using to provision this call tracking number and provide the tracking services, does all the work, which we’re going to dive right back into those here, but that’s all we’re talking about, is getting a number from a third party service to replace an existing number that you’re already using. Or, as Bob said, if you’re going to try out a campaign, this is a dumb example, but maybe just on your business cards. You want a different number to see who’s calling off of the business cards we hand out. You know, you could put a tracking number on your business card and use it for that. So it’s really wherever you want to use it, is up to you. But that’s the nuts and bolts. It’s just a different phone number to replace an existing number or a new one, and then all the features kind of take over from there.
Bob: Yeah, numbers too, not to get too far into the weeds, but you can get additional numbers put on your website to reflect a bigger, let’s say a bigger company. We’re in the area code 651 in the Twin Cities. But let’s say I wanted to represent more Minneapolis. So 651 is more of a St. Paul phone number.
Bob: Much smaller population, smaller city. It’s kind of what Fort Worth is to Dallas, if you will.
Bob: It’s smaller. If you wanted to represent a bigger company or bigger presence in the metro, you may put multiple numbers on there, just so people have, again, the idea that, “Oh, hey. They have a Minneapolis office.” So there’s a 612 number or a Bloomington office. But you get the general idea.
Bob: And, again, those are other metrics that you can measure, and say, “Why are we getting all these 612 calls? Hmm. We may have to shift things to market more heavily towards Minneapolis versus the St. Paul area.”
Bob: So, pretty powerful stuff that’s relatively inexpensive to enact.
Jesse: Yeah. Compared to all the other things you’re going to do for marketing and, again, getting into that $20 or $30 or more for actual cost for a new phone call, the cost you’re going to spend on the call tracking is insignificant.
Jesse: We’re not going to get into pricing. There’s lots of different options out there. But really, it’s not expensive at all. This will be one of the cheapest things that you do. And we’re covering it today. Again, this is not SEO, this is a tools’ topic for you. We’re covering it because it’s so impactful for the price that you’ve just got to do it.
Bob: Yeah, and we use it as a tool for our clients because we want to deliver. And, basically, when we can, we try to create a baseline with them and say, “Hey, here’s a tracking number. We want to see before we do anything, or while we’re doing the work in the background to get your web stuff going, we want to know where your baseline is.”
Bob: So, we both can look each other in the eye and say, “Hey, we brought a value to you. You can measure those metrics.”
Bob: And that’s, again, part of this we’re going to get into here is measuring all that.
Bob: One of the things that, again, call tracking will do is to help train your team up. And this is, again, where I made a mistake. So I came from the managerial standpoint of, “What can I catch people doing wrong?” And scold them or discipline them for that, or whatever the case is, when I should’ve been coming at it from a coaching perspective to say, what can I help them do well? And, more importantly, what incentives can I create for them to do well?
Bob: Right? So nobody wants to do situps. If the end goal is to run the Ironman Marathon, that’s a big goal, that’s a huge canyon that you’ve got to get through. If you’re a good trainer, I would assume that you’re going to figure out how to give that person a Scooby snack, so to speak, after they do 30 or 50 pushups.
Bob: Okay, now let’s move on to the next level where you’re going to get this reward. And, if you can give those different rewards to people that are part of your team, then you can achieve those loftier goals. So it’s a great tool for helping them answer the call correctly and helping convert.
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