Nuances and Best Practices of Mobile PPCall

According to call tracking and analytics provider Telmetrics mobile is where the PPCall growth is today, though there’s meaningful usage online and in print. However Telmetrics President Bill Dinan argues you can’t apply the same rules to PPCall on the PC and mobile.

The company released some “best practices” advice around mobile PPCall. Among them are the following:

Use category specific benchmarks: Dinan argues that appropriate call durations vary by category and that vendors/publishers can’t apply a “one size fits all” approach — which is largely what exists today. In other words, a 20 second call may be a “quality call” in one category but not in another. Dinan says vendors/publishers have the data and should develop vertical and category specific rules around call duration.

Don’t discount “basic info” calls: Dinan says that calls for directions or store hours are good leads for merchants and are legitimately billable, especially when coming from mobile users who are typically “ready to act” or “ready to buy.”

Existing customer new sales opportunity: Most SMBs don’t want to pay for calls from existing customers, focused instead on “new leads.” However Dinan argues that in a mobile context this is wrong. Existing customers may present a new sales or “upsell” opportunity. In addition there’s a defensive element. On a mobile device if your customer doesn’t come to you she’s probably going to go to somebody else.

IVR avoidance: When a local consumer calls a local business (as opposed to Chase or United Airlines) she doesn’t expect an IVR menu, often used to avoid telemarketers. A substantial number of users will drop the call if they hear an IVR system. This is especially true for mobile users for whom time is often a consideration.

The bottom line here, according to Dinan, is that many mobile PPCall providers are leaving money on the table either because they’re using business rules that are too crude or because they’re not recognizing the differences between mobile and non-mobile users (although more and more users are dropping their landlines making the distinction murky).

From a sales standpoint some of these rules are more challenging to implement than others. For example the idea that businesses would pay for short calls and/or calls from existing customers requires some education, making the sale somewhat more complicated. But Dinan is correct that many times short calls from mobile users (and existing customers) are high-quality leads and should be billed.


Check out “Beyond PPC: 8 ways to increase conversions with call tracking.” It’s a free webinar and panel discussion I’m moderating this Thursday (June 28) at 10 Pacific/1 Eastern.

In addition to me, the speakers will be:

  • Josh Reznick, Founder and CEO, Datalot
  • Rick Finch, VP and General Manager, LendingTree Autos
  • Todd Fisher, Co-founder, Call Tracking Metrics

We’ll be talking about call tracking, analytics, phone leads and PPCall. It will address brands, publishers and SMBs. To attend you need to register.

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