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Google Click-to-Call Advertising

Google are testing a new form of advertising in some parts of the USA – it’s called Click to Call. And is where readers click on a little green phone icon on text ads and Google will arrange a call for you. Advertisers must be paying on a ‘pay per call’ basis. Here’s how Google explains it:

‘We’re testing a new product that gives you a free and fast way to speak directly to the advertiser you found on a Google search results page – over the phone.

Here’s how it works: When you click the phone icon, you can enter your phone number. Once you click ‘Connect For Free,’ Google calls the number you provided. When you pick up, you hear ringing on the other end as Google connects you to the other party. Then, chat away on our dime.

We won’t share your telephone number with anyone, including the advertiser. When you’re connected with the advertiser, your number is blocked so the advertiser can’t see it. In addition, we’ll delete the number from our servers after a short period of time.’

Read more at Google Click-to-Call

The Click to Call ads are only reported to be showing in some parts of the US at this stage in Google’s search results (and not on publishers pages) but if this takes off I guess we can expect to see green little icons on our sites. See the Screen Shot below to see what the ads look like.

Google1

Picture from Yardley.ca – he has more on his site.

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Tom says:

    Excellent idea, I wonder if people searching will understand what the little green phone does. If it does appear on a publishers site, I wonder how they will figure out how much cash we make?

  2. Nancy says:

    Interesting idea. As a consumer I wouldn’t use it because it’s so much easier to do things online (no waiting for endless recorded instructions), but it will be interesting to see what the results are.

  3. Johnny says:
  4. Tamil chat says:

    Super duper idea. Great Google..
    Thanks for the sharing of this information Darren

  5. IO ERROR says:

    There’s still a significant percentage of the population who use the Internet for research, but when it comes time to open up the wallet, they prefer the old brick-and-mortar, usually because they don’t trust giving out their credit card information online. (That’s pretty silly, considering your card is at much greater risk in those brick-and-mortar stores, but anyway…) This could reach that segment of the population that wouldn’t ordinarily click through and purchase online.

  6. well this is sort of like what ebay plans on doing with skype. sooner or later voice will be so cheap and pervasive that everyone will have a “click to call me” function on their blogs/e-stores.

  7. While the little green phone and the program it represents will probably change the way some people contact advertisers, I think many Web users (including myself) will try to avoid using it, at least at first. Why call when you can snoop quietly around the Web and get the same info? I know that may sound silly, but I’d feel wary that the advertiser would be pushy with me.

  8. Adam says:

    You guys are totally missing the point, IMHO.

    The ideal market for this isn’t books or ebay or amazon-like stuff. It’s for services like one of my clients offers… $10,000/month subscriptions where there’s no way in hell someone’s gonna sign up online.

    With that said, though, I must admit that as a consumer, I’d be much more apt to click on a link, see if the site looks reputable and suggests that the company’s got what I want, then (for very high-ticket items or subscriptions) look for a phone number to call from the Web site.

    Now if Google could somehow put a call button directly on the advertiser’s SITE… that’d be absolutely brilliant and a massive success, IMHO. Right now, my clients are really frustrated because they have no easy way to tell where their phone traffic (from their number posted on their site) is coming from.

  9. Johnny says:

    Here is another related article : Onsite Advertising is Goolge new Adsense feature

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