4 Proven Methods for Tracking Phone Calls on Your Website

track phone calls

Websites have become the preferred touch point for many consumers around the globe. But why is that? 

The Internet has enabled customers to fully own their buying experience. What’s better than having product info, pricing, a wide choice of communication channels, all at your fingertips 24/7.

Businesses and marketers also have an upgraded toolkit thanks to this digital transformation. With the right technology, you can analyze online forms, live chats, emails and even track phone calls from your website. 

In this guide, we’ll cover all the different methods which you can implement to track phone calls on your website, including:

  • Asking callers manually (duh)
  • Counting clicks on a particular phone number
  • Using Google Ads Phone Call Conversions
  • Implementing a Call Tracking solution

Method #1 – Track phone calls by asking callers manually

✔️ Free
✔️ Builds relationships with customers
❌ Time-consuming
❌ Not scalable
❌ Might annoy some callers
❌ Might get wrong answers

This one is a no brainer. 

While the most difficult to systematically achieve, you can quickly collect valuable data regarding your marketing efforts.

With just a few questions, you can figure out:

  1. Which marketing source generated this call (q: How did you find us?)
  2. What product/service is this call about (q: Is there something specific I can help with?)

Complement your data with call outcomes and you’ll have some unique insights on which marketing sources work better in terms of phone calls and which landing page is driving more callers to engage.

While asking callers can be time consuming and inconvenient, it’s suitable for businesses with low call volumes.

Method #2 – Track phone calls by measuring click-to-call actions

✔️ Free
✔️ Can measure at scale
❌ Will not track phone calls from another device – manual dials
❌ Accidental clicks will count as conversions (that’s around 40% of clicks)

During 2012-2017 mobile optimization was the next big thing. And perhaps the most used marketing buzzword for those 5 years. Part of mobile optimization was empowering visitors to easily contact your business, and rightly so click-to-call buttons became a thing.

Click-to-call buttons take a user to the dial screen when clicked, but do not actually initiate the call. 🤯🤯

Consumers that found your business while browsing on their smartphone are more likely to call if offered the option. And, with the correct setup, it’s possible to track these events in Google Analytics when someone clicks on your telephone number.

But how do these buttons work when someone is browsing on Desktop or Laptop?

Most of the time they don’t. Only computers with maybe software such as Skype can utilize them and unfortunately, most consumers prefer to manually call the number from their physical phone.

Ready to implement this method? Brace yourself, 5 steps of technical marketing ahead ⚠️

  • Step 1: Create a GTM Trigger that fires when the click url contains “Tel”
  • Step 2: Create a Phone Calls Tag
  • Step 3: Link the Trigger with the Tag
  • Step 4: Publish it
  • Step 5: Create a Phone Call Clicks as an Event-Goal in Google Analytics

Did the above leave you scratching your head? 

This in-depth guide does an amazing job at describing thoroughly the implementation process.

Method #3 – Track phone calls with Google Ads Phone Calls conversions

✔️ Free
✔️ Scalable
✔️ Tracks phone calls from all devices & manual dials
❌ Works only for Google Ads traffic
❌ Might attract spam callers

Google is to marketers what water is to humans. (okay, maybe I’m exaggerating. or am I not?)

Anyways, Google Ads enables marketers to place their product in front of the right person and monitor the effectiveness of their campaigns. By effectiveness we mean 💰

Phone calls typically lead to 💰 thus they’re not an exemption – and Google offers a way to measure those conversions.

Like in the previous method, setting this up requires some level of marketing knowledge and I strongly recommend reading Google’s official documentation

The main idea is that Google introduces unique phone numbers to your Google Ads campaigns and forwards phone calls to your main phone number. In case a visitor clicks on one of your campaigns, Google’s phone number will swap the phone number on your website via GTM. (Google Tag Manager)

Method #4 – Track phone calls by using a Call Tracking software 

✔️ Scalable
✔️ Tracks & attributes every single phone call
✔️ Works for all marketing channels and even offline media
✔️ Richer data such as recordings, transcriptions, caller ids, who hung up, call durations, hang-up reasons and more!
❌ Paid option
❌ Might come across as complicated by people not familiar with UTMs

With 3 free options, why would I opt-in for a paid solution?

Dedicated call tracking platforms are the end-game of tracking phone calls from your website.

This option is for marketers and businesses that receive phone calls from many marketing sources, the phone call is important to their business, and they want to get the most from their advertising spend.

Through a platform like Nimbata, you can:

  • Acquire multiple phone numbers without paperwork
  • Show to each visitor a unique phone number and gather data on his/her customer journey
  • Forward all calls to your main phone number
  • Record calls and understand which channels are generating actual sales

Whether calls are coming from Bing, Google, Instagram, Facebook or even Offline media like Newspapers and TV, call tracking platforms will show you which places are untapped gold mines of phone calls. 


Curious to:

🤔 See how many phone calls are coming from your marketing efforts?
🤔 Learn the keyword most customers search for before they call you?
🤔 Know why some people eat potato chips with chocolate? 

I have no idea about that 3rd one, but in case the first 2 got your attention, you will find a subtle CTA below.

Gain full visibility on what makes your phone ring

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