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Top 5 SEO and Customer Experience Questions to Ask Your Call Tracking Provider

Jonathon Byrd Customer Success Director, DialogTech

With any new piece of digital marketing technology, marketers worry about how that technology could affect SEO rankings and the impact it has on their customers. The world of call tracking causes marketers to ask the same questions. Implementing call tracking software involves many factors: new phone numbers on a web page, additional JavaScript code, changes in page load, and new landing page experiences. So how do you decide what call tracking provider to use? Below are 5 key questions you should ask your current provider or prospective call tracking partner:

1) Does Your Software Impact Numbers Currently on My Website?

Call tracking may require you to edit the hard-coded phone numbers on your website. In some cases, it requires you to completely remove the phone number and replace it with a piece of JavaScript. I highly suggest that you do not use a product that requires this as a part of its implementation. In turn, look for software that uses find and replace technology, meaning the JavaScript searches for the phone number(s) hard-coded on your pages and overwrites them. The hard-coded number remains the same, but the visitor will see a dynamically assigned number. Implementing technology that doesn’t use find and replace brings us to our second question.

2) Does Your Software Negatively Impact Google Indexing?

When a website doesn’t have a consistent hard-coded phone number, it can result in a negative impact on your site’s NAP score. A NAP score is applied by Google and represents how consistently you use the same name, address, and phone number throughout various web properties; for example, Google My Business. With software that uses find and replace script, your hard-coded phone number remains on the site’s source code which allows Google to index it when they crawl your site.

3) What Type of JavaScript Do You Use?

On top of ensuring the JavaScript uses find and replace technology, ask your current or prospective provider how their script can be implemented. Some providers require their script to be directly added to the source code of your site, likely due to the script being synchronous (i.e., required to load as the page loads). Many synchronous scripts also require additional JavaScript to be added later if you plan on integrating your call tracking data into a third party platform. Not only would a marketer possibly need to involve their IT department to add the original script, but they may also need to go through the same cumbersome process (especially if they work for a large corporation) to add additional script later.

Other call tracking providers use an asynchronous script for dynamic number insertion. This means the script loads independently of the page, which results in zero additional load time of that page. Also, asynchronous scripts can be inserted into tag managers like Google Tag Manager, Tealium, and Ensighten to give marketers better control of what loads on their pages without needing to involve IT or change the source code.

4) What Happens If a Visitor Does Not Have Javascript Turned On?

For websites using call tracking JavaScript in place of a phone number, any visitor whose browser setting is set to not use JavaScript will not see a phone number. Since there is no hard-coded number to display, a blank field will appear in its place – completely removing the ability for that visitor to contact you by phone. I always recommend using software that dynamically inserts a phone number and lets you keep your number hard-coded in these uncommon, but possible, scenarios.

5) What Happens If Your Call Tracking Application Goes Down?

Similar to the above scenario, if a website uses call tracking software that requires a JavaScript snippet to replace a hard-coded phone number, there is a risk that a number will not appear if there is an issue on the provider side. If the application is unable to display a phone number, it prevents the visitor from reaching your business by phone. Using script that allows you to keep the phone number hard-coded on the site allows that number to be displayed to visitors if an incident were to occur.

Hopefully these questions help you evaluate your current or future call tracking provider. If you’ve experienced any of the scenarios mentioned above or are new to call tracking, contact us for a demo today!