By Sri Sharma
The research, which was commissioned to understand the use of the click-to-call option in mobile search, found that almost half of those surveyed (42%) had used this function, with the need to talk to a real person stated as the main motivation. Wanting answers more quickly and needing more information than a website could provide were the other main reasons provided for using click-to-call. The average click-to-call conversation is six minutes, suggesting the option can lead to high level of engagement for companies.
Click-to-call is seen as most important for mobile searchers in the purchase phase. 48% find it extremely important to be able to call the business when they are about to make a purchase and 36% need it when researching an item or service.
The findings also suggest that businesses that do not offer the option risk damaging their brand image and could lose customers. 36% of mobile searchers indicated they would be more likely to explore other brands if click-to-call was not offered. 32% would feel frustrated or annoyed and 30% would be disappointed in the brand.
The business value is further highlighted through previous Google Adwords research, which found that the service increases average ad click-through rate by 8%.
Ian Carrington, Director of Performance Solutions & Innovation at Google, comments: “Globally, we know that 40 million calls are driven by Google Ads each month so it’s fair to say that click-to-call is a clear sales driver. Moreover, for businesses that haven’t yet built a responsive or mobile site, click-to-call is a great way to ensure consumers can still reach your business easily, showing that mobile advertising doesn’t just have to be for the mobile-ready.”
The research also compared behaviours across different verticals. It found that consumers use click-to-call across different sectors but are most likely to need the capability for local services (63%), automotive (42%) and tech (38%) businesses. Travel (36%) and hospitality (27%) followed.
Case Study: sk:
sk:n, the UK’s leading provider of non-surgical skin treatments, used click-to-call as part of an AdWords enhanced campaign, resulting in a 42% increase in calls. The business changed their mobile search result messaging to encourage consumers to make calls rather than visit the website. Results showed that click-to-call conversion rate was 26 times higher than that of the standard mobile campaign while the enquiry-to-consultation conversion rate for the click-to-call mobile campaign was 2.2 times higher compared to all search channels.
About the research
Google commissioned Ipsos, an independent market research company, to understand UK consumer attitudes about click-to-call within organic and paid mobile search results. The study explored behaviors within the context of 7 different verticals: Travel, Restaurant, Finance, Retail, Technology, Local Services and Auto.
1,500 respondents were surveyed between November 14 and November 25, 2013. Respondents were aged 18-74, smartphone users who use mobile search multiple times per week, and had made a purchase in at least one of the verticals in the past six months.
What is click-to-call?
About the author
Sri Sharma is Managing Director of Net Media Planet, sk:n’s marketing agency.