After the Internet took root in the 90s, companies realized that they had to be online to survive. E-mail quickly became the communication channel of choice, mostly driven by consumer preference. Companies that understood this shifted much of their advertising and marketing efforts to satisfy this “new” online buyer.
We are now seeing another shift with mobile devices and tablets. The advances in technology have made having a cell phone ubiquitous nowadays, and companies again must shift their marketing gearboxes to accommodate today’s buyers.
A recent report conducted by BIA/Kelsey states that phone calls from prospective buyers are increasing exponentially and are considered the best channel for initiating the sales process. Mobile has been a major driver for this growth and has opened up new opportunities for businesses to respond and communicate with their customers. Upon sampling decision makers, 61% of advertisers say that a telephone call from a prospective customer is the single most important lead they can receive.
Internet (online) searches continue to outpace offline sources when it comes to locating a business. Of the online searches, mobile dominates in generating phone calls.
Most advertising is largely a “push” medium and often does not include a clear call-to-action (CTA). Including a compelling CTA, (e.g. driving to a phone call), will generally produce a much higher sales closing ratio. Call conversion from a desktop local search is 7 percent once a local landing page is viewed, vs. 57 percent from a mobile device, according to the study.
In 2011 the average U.S.-based business received 10.9 calls as a result of search engines (and all downstream properties through SEO) and 34.7 calls from mobile.
Call management technology and analytics are essential for businesses to capitalize on this exploding trend. Infusing this technology into the business flow is very simple and does not require code development or IT resources. All businesses already have the two required pieces- a phone number and a phone.
Here are a few of the available technologies our clients have access to:
> Local and Toll Free Numbers: Local and toll free numbers with carrier-grade sound quality and reliability.
> Call Tracking: Measure marketing ROI for any offline or online campaign. Get all the details of calls made through your tracking numbers for more insight and informed decisions. Track call quantity, duration, date and time, answered calls, geographic call origin and other call tracking features.
> Advanced Call Routing: Geo-routing, scheduled call routing, hunt groups, menu routing, ring multiple extensions
> Reports: Online reports give dashboard and downloadable data for easy analysis. Scheduled reports also available.
> Call Recording: A vital resource for frontline phone performance management, training, and deep understanding of lead quality.
> Call Tagging and Call Commenting: Use tags to create call metadata for categorizing calls. Develop skills by attaching comments to calls.
With its simple deployment, call management tools can instantly provide value without disrupting present business processes. Any investment in this technology will pay for itself times over.