Top 11 Reasons You Should Add Click to Call to Your Paid Search Marketing

One night, I decided to order a pizza. After blankly staring at my PPC analytics for hours, tricking myself into thinking I could somehow get more creative in 130 characters, I searched for delivery and saw something that looked like this…

Pizza Hut

Now, if I’m being honest, I wanted pizza so badly, I didn’t pay attention to the ad copy, I just called. Actually, I was a little surprised when it was Pizza Hut on the other end of the line.

Then it occurred to me, there are so many instances when I’d rather talk with a real human being than click around a website, and it made me wonder… just how effective is this click to call ad extension?

So I decided to investigate and found 11 great reasons to start using click to call in paid search ads and landing pages:


11. 58% of Americans Own A Smartphone

According to Pew Internet Research, as of January 2014, 58% of American adults own a smartphone. On its own, that’s a pretty impressive stat, but when you consider that back in 2011 only 35% of Americans had a smartphone, it’s downright staggering.

In the not too distant future, the majority of Americans will own smartphones –and they will expect click to call buttons as part of their mobile experience.


10. Global Mobile Internet Traffic Grew By 81% in 2013

Why is device access so important? To give you an idea of how powerful the mainstream adoption of smartphones is, consider this: According to a Cisco study, the global mobile internet traffic grew by 81% in 2013 – from 820 petabytes per month at the end of 2012 to 1.5 exabytes per month at the end of 2013.

In other words, there’s a TON of information that’s being accessed from a mobile device (88% from a smartphone).

In fact, the traffic that comes from mobile alone is about 18 times the size of the entire internet back in 2000, and is expected to grow by 10X in just four years.


9.Google Reports 70% Of Mobile Searches Result In A Phone Call

Here’s where it gets really juicy, according to Google 70% of mobile searchers call a business straight from the search results.

Think about that for a second. The number of mobile searches is expected to keep growing due to increasing smartphone adoption, and that means there’s a huge opportunity to capture a growing audience with the click to call format.

Think about how the phone leads convert. Assuming nothing about the phone sales process changed, would increasing the amount of inbound callers increase revenue?

According to Google and Ipsos Research, 52% of people report the ability to call being important to them during the research process and 61% report calls being important to the purchasing process, with the most common call activity being to “compare prices.”

My guess is, when there’s a knowledgeable sales person on the other side who can easily field questions, the purchasing decision comes much easier than having to sort through endless white-papers, ebooks, and drip emails.


8. Inbound Phone Leads Doubled In 2013
As smartphones continue to get into more hands, the amount of searches for businesses also increases.

In this report by BIA/Kelsey, research shows that on average phone leads doubled in 2013 and are expected to continue to rise. As mobile search replaces desktop search activity more and more, phone calls become the fast and convenient option for conversion.

BIA Kelsey Graph



7. Click To Call Landing Pages Are Just… Easier To Use

This one is pretty self-explanatory, right? I mean, exploring a website and filling out forms on your smartphone isn’t exactly the easiest experience in the world. Seriously, which looks more appealing to you? Having to fill this form out with the tiny keys on your mobile keyboard:

Mobile LP

Or getting to what you want in two (maybe three) taps with a click to button. Seems like a no brainer…


6. 94% of Mobile Searchers Say They Need To Directly Call A Business At Least Sometimes

According to a new study by Google, click to call is frequently used by 42% of mobile searchers, and a massive 94% of users have reported needing to call a business directly, whether click to call was available or not.

Even more interesting, over a third of people surveyed said they would consider exploring competitors if there was no phone number associated with the companies search result page.

It’s safe to assume the only reason more consumers aren’t using click to call even more is because businesses aren’t taking advantage of the format. This format is highly effective and presents a rare opportunity to leapfrog the competition.


5. 76% of Mobile Searchers Would Use Call Features To Schedule An Appointment For Professional Services

This information comes from the 2013 study of people using click to call, where over 75% of those surveyed said they would use the feature to schedule an appointment.

Now, think about some of the things you schedule appointments for:

  • Accountants
  • Dentists
  • Doctors
  • Lawyers
  • Architects
  • Home Repairs

If your goal is to drive leads for any kind of high dollar service like, this is some serious low hanging fruit for you.

To top it off, 52% of the respondents in the more recent version of the study said they found click to call useful and 48% report that having click to call functionality is extremely important at the point of purchase.


4. 3 out of 4 Calls Last Longer Than 30 Seconds and Calls From Ads Last Around 6 Minutes

Google’s research also found that 72% of calls lasted longer than 30 seconds and average calls from ads typically last around six minutes. These trends in call duration indicate phone calls are high quality leads that are likely to turn into revenue.


3. On average, AdWords Advertisers That Implement Click to Call See An 8% Increase in CTR

AdWords call extension

This is pretty straight forward. More people click on click to call ads because they’re a better fit for the mobile platform.

Look at the ad format itself. The call to action is incredibly clear, the ad is extremely clickable, and the promise of connecting with a real person right away lends itself perfectly to the immediacy of the mobile environment.

Having the call extension also makes the company look more credible. In the Google study it was found that 36% of searchers said they would explore other brands if the search results did not have a phone number associated with it.


2. Mobile Search Will Drive Nearly 70 Billion Phone Calls in Less Than 2 Years

If the trends continue, with more mobile devices entering the market, and the volume of calls from both paid and organic search, then mobile is set to drive over 70 billion phone calls in less than two years.

While the Internet has certainly made it easy for us to make buying decisions without help from real people, it’s not really a surprise that over 50% of people in Google’s study said that “speaking with a real person” was the main reason they call businesses.

With all those calls that’ll be coming from search, it’s really easy to bridge the gap and help people get what they want even faster.


1. Searchers Across All Verticals Are Likely To Use Click-To-Call

google verticals

This was perhaps the most encouraging set of statistics, because it highlights the fact that even in the lowest performing verticals, 24% of the study’s participants would still use the click to call format if it were available.

It also made me wonder how much more successful click to call could be if there were specialized services built around it.

For example, what if restaurants had an instant “book a reservation” function, or auto part companies had a “call a mechanic” feature to connect you when you’re trying to diagnose a car problem? With a little creative thinking, there could be a ton of great features that are built specifically around using phone calls.

But regardless of how you leverage click to call, it’s clear, there is a ton of opportunity and the time to get on board is now. Convinced and ready to start leveraging pay-per-call in your marketing? Check out pay-per-call platforms like Invoca to get started.

Tommy Walker
​Tommy Walker is a contributing author for Invoca and is the Editor-in-Chief of ConversionXL, Producer of ​Page Fights and founder of Social Filter. You can follow him on Twitter here.  

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