In March 2010, Google expanded "click-to-call phone numbers" in mobile ads for national advertisers that enables customers to connect with the business by clicking on a number directly from the ad, regardless of their location.
But what happens for phone numbers that are entered in an ad, but not via a "clickable Call Extension"? Since, "advertisers can now view detailed reporting on click-to-call activity by segmenting traffic by click type. As a result, we will be "making an upcoming change to ads where any phone number in an ad will be clickable on a mobile device"," announced Surojit Chatterjee, Product Manager, Mobile Ads.
"Calls stemming from clicks to these numbers will now be the same cost as a click to your website. Moreover, potential customers are now able to click on your number while on their mobile devices, and you'll be able to leverage the power of Adwords reporting by segmenting your campaign reports by click type," informs Chatterjee.
Google recommends that to get the most value from click-to-call, "you remove your phone number from your ad creative and manually create a Call Extension."
There are two primary benefits to this: "First, your number will appear as an additional line of ad text which frees up space in your ad creative for other messages." "And, you're able to take advantage of other powerful enhancements such as Vanity Numbers, call-only creatives, and Call Metrics reporting," explains Google.
(Left): Previously, numbers in ad were non-clickable and customers users couldn't directly call a business from the ad. (Right): Now, phone numbers in ad text will become clickable. Users can call a business directly from an ad, and full AdWords reporting is available for all calls placed.
To get started with these call based features, visit the 'Ad Extensions' tab in your account to create your first Call Extension.