Adwords pay per call advertising

So you've set up your pay-per-call campaign, and are currently buying laser-targeted traffic from your source of choice? That's great!

But then you look at your statistics, and you see something very strange.

You sent 20 new callers to that offer which converts on a simple 2 minute call… yet most, if not all are dropping at either the 30 seconds to 1:30 minute mark… What's going on?

My Unprofitable Learning Scenario

I had this exact issue when using YellowPages Pay-Per-Call advertising service (not recommended).

The YP PPCall service allows you to advertise your # in their platforms for a fee-per-call. Sounds like a charm right? Pay $2+ a phone call, and generate $7-50 a call (if they meet the offer criteria).

Yet, after several dozen unprofitable calls, I did further research, and determined a LARGE amount of their traffic consisted of robot-callers and telemarketers. I had to dig deep to find a case study on the quality of YP calls, and found this: YellowPages Advertising Still Effective?

Listening In On Google Ads Traffic Quality

On the other hand, we have Google Ads traffic sending us laser-targeted mobile keyword traffic.

While I don't doubt the quality of Google Ads traffic as being the best in the world (and the priciest even), I had to make sure that what I was getting was exactly what I needed.

So I did a call-forwarding with call-recording on the numbers (more on that below), and listened to who was calling in, and what the issues were.

In this case the offer is for a specific lawyer niche, and what I found were 3 things.

  1. The customer service specialists aren't exactly the most well-spoken individuals, but they get the job done (varies from call-center to call center)
  2. Make sure you set the EXACT offer settings for conversion during your targeting, otherwise, the caller will not convert (I accidentally included a U.S. state which was not part of the offer).
    • In Location Options (Campaign settings), Target: People in My Target Location
    • Exclude: People in, searching for, or viewing pages about my excluded location
  3. Despite some states being listed as ‘targeted locations', various ZIP codes within those targeted states were not converting, thus cutting the time on the call, and losing the conversion.

How To Listen In

Disclaimer: Only listen to the calls for the sole purpose of qualifying your traffic, affiliate offer, and call-center.

This part is very simple, and involved:

  1. Taking your affiliate phone number
  2. Plugging it into your call-tracking platform
  3. Take your new call-tracking phone number
  4. And attach it to your traffic source.
  5. Listen to the call traffic coming in

For the time being, I'm using which provides the call-record feature for Pay-Per-Call advertising. Thankfully, they have a trial period, so you can test out their service on your traffic quality, and see if they end up making you even more profitable.

Quote of the Day

We want to reinvent the phone. What's the killer app? The killer app is making calls! It's amazing how hard it is to make calls on most phones. We want to let you use contacts like never before – sync your iPhone with your PC or mac.

~Steve Jobs


  1. I’m glad I re-read this article. I just read a WSO that actively promotes the AT&T(YP) directory (and the guys showed his dollar results etc)- though it was from early 2011 so things may have changed since then.

    Do you think there’s any value in at least trialing this method?

    • This method is B.S, but don’t hold it against yourself not to try.

      Everyone has a different result, but the statistics prove otherwise from the linked article.

  2. HI Leonidas
    i found your pay per call video in warrior forum which is a great source of education and now while am reading this great article i couldn't understand how do you use toll free to listen to calls, so i was wounderig if you could please make a video for it, it would be appreciate it.
    thanks man.

    • I don’t run quality checks on the calls anymore, due to running large volumes of calls.

      But you basically take your phone # from RingRevenue, plug it into your call-forwarding platform, and take the phone number you bought from them (the call forwarding platform), and plug that into adwords/bingads.

  3. Hello Leonidas,
    great post and thanks for the link to call forwarder.

    I suppose that using call forwarder is great when creating campaigns for new offers, to test the quality of the advertiser, but in the long run recording every single call for the same offer could eat up the profit margins.

    I don’t understand this part, I read somewhere that it is recommended to use call filtering with IVR, where callers need to answer simple questions with their phone keypad before the call even starts, so they can be properly redirected (filtered).

    So my questions is, do you recommend setting up IVR for click2call Adwords campaign?
    And my biggest confusion is, do the advertisers or publishers (affiliates) set the IVR?

    Thank you 🙂

    • Hey Damir,

      Request ‘Call promotions’ under your account->features.

      That’s your IVR for filtering traffic, although most advertisers have a good IVR in place.

      And yea, call forwarding can chew at your margins, but it’s sometimes important to see what’s happening with your calls.

  4. I made about a $1500 from student loan offer I ran on YP back in ’12 the offer ended before I found out if call quality was an issue. I have tried to run other offers there and not had any success. I still have $179 in spend there I may do some testing with it chances are its better spent at Adwords.

    • Hey Dustin, Yellow pages is unfortunately archaic, although it still has potential to work. Unfortunately the calls are expensive, and only profitable if you either A) run direct, or B) have a large payout.

      Worth a test on your remaining $179, or just ask for a refund.

  5. Oh by the way… If you need more call tracking/ recording options… You can get a free local number with 100 free minutes from AddSource a new competitor of Call Rail. Another great but little known service is You can get local numbers for $1 per month and .02 per minute. Call Tracker Jack make look a little cheap but its built with the Twililo api so its bullet proof. Both Call Tracker Jack & Add Source feature call tracking, call recording and local or toll free numbers.

    • Great, thank you Dustin. It’s amazing all of these new call tracking platforms. It also allows you potential for building out your own call-offers (if you manage to build out a call-center also).

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