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Google AdWords Reveals Mobile Call-Only Campaigns

Google has revealed call-only campaigns, a new option in AdWords that allows advertisers to reach customers by showing their phone number, business description, and call button.

Call-only campaigns are optimized to show on mobile devices that can make phone calls. When a user searches for a business, the only call-to-action (CTA) is a phone number that prompts the searcher to confirm the call. He/she is unable to reach the advertiser’s website via the ad.

According to Google, around 70 percent of mobile searchers call a business directly from search results, which means there is a lot of potential to reach new customers with these campaigns.

“This is a big deal because it’s the first ever unit in AdWords where the only CTA is a call and not a link back to a landing page. This means every click an advertiser pays for can be a phone call to the business,” says a source close to the move.

“It’s great for advertisers who only seek calls as leads, especially when people are increasingly searching on mobile and able to make those direct calls,” adds the source.

As well as displaying a phone number and call button, call-only ads can also be customized with options such as “speak to a specialist today,” or “call to make an appointment.”


Previously, advertisers were able to set up call-only ads with call extensions but the new ad product means it is easier to measure calls as the only conversion type for a campaign. Implementation in the user interface is also much simpler. In fact, as the ad type is specifically designed to encourage phone calls, ad copy, too, can be created with that in mind.

“This move shows Google’s willingness to embrace a mobile ad that completely eliminates the website – reinforcing its focus on helping advertisers find ways to make mobile make sense. Advertisers will need to track metrics off these ads carefully, as many users may not realize a click places a phone call until after the advertiser has already been charged,” says, Bob Sturges, account director at 3Q Digital.

For existing advertisers using the older method of manipulating calls via call extensions, you can upgrade to call-only campaigns by following the details on this AdWords Help Center page.

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