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Demystifying Website Call Conversions



One of the more common concerns I hear from advertisers is that many features in AdWords are too technical. “I’m not a full-time coder,” I recall one exasperated advertiser saying.


It’s true, AdWords can be daunting. But often, these limits are self-imposed and if you have the courage to try to understand, you will prevail. Take website call conversions, something I wish all small businesses used. Website call conversions are used to track calls made from visiting your website. This is different from call-only ads and call extensions, which show your phone number on the search results page.


On the surface, creating them may seem tricky, but really, it’s as simple as finding the right information and pasting it in the right places. I hope this walkthrough will convince you.


Let’s use my dad’s small business, A1 Japanese Steakhouse as an example. He wants to start tracking website call conversions. Let’s get him started.


Here are the steps:

  1. In Ad extensions tab, create a call extension and apply it to the campaign.
    1. Screenshot 1_1
    2. Screenshot 1_2
  2. In Tools > Conversions, click on the red “+ CONVERSION” button and select to create a new Website Call Conversion. Give it a name and save. You can change the configuration anytime.
    1. Screenshot 2_1
    2. Screenshot 2_2
    3. Screenshot 2_3
  3. With your Website Call Conversion created, you can now apply it. Copy your conversion tracking tag. Where you edit your website HTML, paste the code between the <head> and </head> tags.
    1. Screenshot 3_1
  4. Replace his <body> tag with the inclusion of the onload tag and business number: <body onload="_googWcmGet('number', '610-709-0998')">
    1. Screenshot 4_1
  5. Where he has phone number on the website, replace it with this: <span class="number"><a href=”tel:610-709-0998”>610-709-0998</a></span>
    1. Screenshot 5_1


That’s it. Just like that, you can now track call details from people who clicked on your ads.


Hope you found this useful. For more on website call conversions, please visit our official support page: Track calls to a phone number on a website

Trevor_Stewart Top Contributor
May 2016 - last edited May 2016

Great post Tom,


Call tracking is a must to count conversions with today's online shoppers. Unless you would like to ask your client on the phone " Where did you find us"!@#$

Now that is always great on client experience...


Call tracking can actually identify the leads first visit including it's source by placing a cookie during its first visit.


We also use call tracking to record the calls so we are able to listen to the calls to filter non-sales calls.  Clients love having the recordings of their sales leads to listen for quality control. 


I would also add that phone call leads are often  better leads than forms or Pop ups. Tracking these leads to Cost per sale will more likely to have a better closing rate as well.


Thanks for sharing! 😊


Tom W Google Employee
May 2016

Really great points brought up, @Trevor_Stewart.

Indeed, for most businesses, a call is the opportunity to seize the potential customer then and there. This is far better than a form submission, which is passive and may leave the potential customer uninterested, as you mentioned.

Thank you for your insight :-)

Julia_Muller Top Contributor
June 2016

Great write up, @Tom W


Very simple instructions for anyone without programming knowledge to implement the complete call tracking any business needs in a matter of a few minutes. If, as an advertiser, you're not sure that you can do this, following above instructions is all you need. Implementing this shouldn't take no longer than 30 minutes all in, and less so after you've done it once or twice. I've done this times and again, without in-depth knowledge of coding, or a programming degree Smiley Wink


This is also very useful to use for the advertisers who have campaigns set to Target ROAS, Enhanced CPC or Target CPA -- as phone call conversions become part of the optimization data set. In addition, employing this feature usually allows to start accounting for phone call conversions generated by AdWords campaigns, a feature equally important not only to advertisers but also to agencies jugded on conversion generation performance. 


One addition I'd mention here is to add your business phone number twice, indicating one of them as mobile, just so that the system has a "mobile" version of the same number as back up. So you'd literally add your business phone number twice, and indicate one of them as "mobile" (at the point in Thom's write up illustrated by Screenshot 1_2 above).


So, you'd see this:

Screen Shot 2016-06-08 at 11.12.18.pngScreen Shot 2016-06-08 at 11.13.34.png












Tom W Google Employee
June 2016

@Julia_Muller, all I have to say is absolutely wonderful additional insights!! Thank you so, so much. Advertisers out there - if you're not convinced you should start tracking calls, read what she's written. I think that should seal the deal :-)