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If you have a website, you'll know that boosting your rankings via search engine optimization is a continuous struggle with no guaranteed results. You may have also tried paid search engine marketing (SEM)—search ads—for which you are charged on a pay-per-click basis.

Whatever the case, you've had experience with leads entering your site only to leave without contacting you. Those leads could be coming from a Google search results page, your social media campaigns, banner ads you have in place, or various other sources.

The question here is how to ensure your online marketing is doing what it should be: driving business to you.

The next evolution in SEM will help you do just that. With call tracking, a whole new wealth of information about your potential customers is now available. You'll be able to see the number from which the call was made, where and what time it was made, how long each call was, whether it was a repeat or first-time caller, and how many calls you're getting from each geographical location; and, of course, you'll be able to play back call recordings. Missed call? All that information will also be available.

Call tracking improves your paid search conversion rate and maximizes efficiency.

Here's how you can get the most out of your online marketing efforts via call tracking.

Step 1: Figuring out what you need

If you've got a small operation and don't engage in any online advertising, it might be time to think about catching up with your competitors. If you are already doing all sorts of online marketing, it's time to assess the effectiveness of each online channel and decide on how granular you want your analysis to be.

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image of Leonard Tan

Leonard Tan is the founder and CEO of PurpleClick, an award-winning online marketing agency specializing in search marketing. He is also featured in Red Herring Top 100 Asia, among the list of the world's best technology innovators.

LinkedIn: Leonard Tan