A Search for Motive: Why Do Some Local Marketers Hate Call Tracking?


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motive call trackingLately a few local SEO companies having been writing articles bashing call tracking. They claim that it hurts SEO.

It doesn’t. Studies have been conducted, and we’ve written SEO blog, after SEO blog, after SEO blog, detailing why and how SEO isn’t harmed by call tracking. Tens of thousands of local marketing companies use call tracking, millions of businesses in North America use it. Some of the biggest, most sophisticated companies in the world use call tracking.

When used properly, call tracking does not harm SEO. Period.

So here’s the question: Why do some local SEO companies insist that it does? What is their motive?

There are only about 5 possible motives. We’ll explore each of them.

1) They don’t understand new methods of call tracking

It is likely that some local marketing firms bash call tracking simply because they don’t understand it.

Call tracking no longer relies on changing phone numbers in directory listings or hard-coded numbers on your website. That’s how call tracking used to work. Companies were forced to change the numbers on their directory listings.

This hurt their SEO.

So…the call tracking industry developed new technology that allows companies NEVER change directory listings AND to keep their phone number hard-coded on their site but then dynamically, via a snippet of Javascript, display call tracking phone numbers dependent on source, keyword, or campaign.

The hard-coded number on the site never changes. NAP is maintained. SEO is not harmed.

It is quite clear that people criticizing call tracking don’t understand this new call tracking method. They still believe that call tracking depends on switching phone numbers in listings.

Seriously, they believe this! Their entire articles contain criticisms of call tracking being used in directories. CALL TRACKING HASN’T ADVOCATED THIS FOR 10 YEARS. This is like someone criticizing America for not allowing women to vote in 2013.

We’ve allowed it for 100 years now.

They’re criticizing something that isn’t a problem anymore. The problem was solved years ago.

2) They’re stuck in 1990 call tracking land

My guess is that the people writing these articles haven’t actually spoken to a call tracking company in 15 to 20 years. Honestly, when was the last time they had a demo of a modern call tracking tool?

It must be 15 to 20 years since they talked to a call tracking company.

Why do I assume this?

Because their knowledge of the technology is outdated.

3) They don’t value phone calls

The other possible reason local search companies bash call tracking is because they don’t value phone calls to begin with. That is, they don’t believe phone calls are valuable leads.

This is foolish and highly unlikely.

Most local marketers–I hope–know that phone calls are statistically their most valuable leads (BIA/Kelsey), result in more business and revenue than any other lead source (UNLV), and are the fastest growing lead generation area in the local space (BIA/Kelsey).

Hopefully they know all this. Hopefully…

4) They don’t want their clients to know how many phone calls they’re generating

This might sound a little conspiracy theory-ish. Think about what I’m suggesting here. I’m suggesting that there are SOME (not a lot, but some) local marketing agencies that would rather keep their clients in the dark than give them marketing data.

Why on Earth would they do this? Hmmm…

Perhaps they’re scared that if their clients knew how few calls they were actually generating, their clients would be upset.

Don’t think this is realistic? You don’t think a local search company would be so short-sighted and shallow? Think again.

Yesterday I was the phone with a major local marketing company. They indicated that they loved the idea of call tracking, but that, “They were concerned with client visibility.”

I asked what that gibberish sentence of business-speak meant.

There was a brief period of silence followed by this, “We’re concerned that if they can tell how few phone calls we’re generating, they won’t work with us.”

In this case call tracking isn’t the problem, their marketing tactics are the problem. This local marketing company was afraid.

5) They need something to write about

We’re in the age of content marketing. Content is the new king of SEO. There is pressure on every company, especially so-called marketing experts to produce content. This pressure is real and is ever-present. That’s why we’re writing 3 blogs each day.

Isn’t it possible that these local marketing firms that so malign call tracking are simply struggling for things to write about? And as they’re sitting at their computer with the blinking cursor and an empty screen mocking them, they suddenly remember something they read 10 years about how awful call tracking is.

Boom. The article practically writes itself.

This happens. As a guy who writes a lot, I can tell you that this happens.

The bottom line is this: when call tracking is used and applied correctly, it DOESN’T HURT SEO.

Republished with author's permission from original post.

McKay Allen
LogMyCalls is the next generation of call tracking and marketing automation. The award winning product from ContactPoint, LogMyCalls provides lead scoring, conversion rate tracking and close rate mapping. For more information visit LogMyCalls.com and call (866) 811-8880.


  1. I agree, McKay–if call tracking is done the right way, it will not hurt local SEO. The key is to make sure that you do it right and the information you send or post does not conflict with what’s already out there. –David @ Touch Point


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