Auto insurance ranks high among transactions started and completed with a phone call, along with home repair, legal services, appointment-based services like dentists, cable and satellite television and auto repair, among others. Certain travel purchases, like a cruise, are almost always purchased by phone.
Marchex has pulled data to quantify how mobile click-to-call phone calls convert into revenue and highlight some of the challenges marketers face in this type of campaign. Data for this study comes from 24 million aggregated and anonymous "valid" phone calls analyzed during the last 18 months.
More than half of consumers use search engines as the primary vehicle to find a car, and most of these searches are mobile. More than 75% of leads to auto dealers from mobile are phone calls. Many retail inquiries are made via a phone call such as verifying store hours, enquiring about inventory or answering a simple question, according to the report, which cites a BIA/Kelsey estimate of 93 billion consumer-to-business phone calls made from smartphones this year. The research firm expects click-to-calls will grow to 162 billion by 2019.
In the analysis of more than 24 million phone calls, Marchex found the average conversion rate for sales, appointments or reservations lands between 5% and 25%. Taking the average order size of these purchases, Marchex conservatively estimates that click-to-call commerce will grow to nearly $2 trillion by 2019. Whether of not that number is accurate it's safe to assume that the majority of searches for business will occur from a mobile phone.
It turns out conversion rates from mobile calls on average are four-times higher than those on desktop. Between 5% and 25% of calls to advertisers convert into a sale. About three out of four calls to advertisers are product and service related. The calls must measure at least 30 seconds in length. Most are product or service related. For instance, it seems obvious that 83% of calls to a towing company is service related, compared with 34% of calls to a construction or home improvement company.
For financial services and insurance campaigns, the median conversion rate is 9.5%. Top performing campaigns can reach 15% and some campaigns convert at just 6.4%. The data also shows the conversion rate is consistently over 25% for rental cars and over 20% for hotels.
Interestingly, Marchex also analyzed spam calls. More than 51% of calls were filtered out as spam and misdials.