The Power of Call Tracking for Auto Body Shops

The Power of Call Tracking for Auto Body Shops

Table of Contents



Call tracking is a powerful tool that can help you understand where your collision repair shop’s calls are coming from, and how to fine tune your marketing efforts. Chances are, you may already have access to some basic tracking info, whether you know it or not.

Before we get into the details of call tracking, let’s look at an old-fashioned marketing technique that various businesses have tried in the past. 

Imagine you run into Target for a few items, and when you come out, there’s a flyer on your windshield, with an offer for car detailing. You know you are past due for a deep clean, so you call the number on the sheet to schedule a cleaning appointment.

The friendly guy who answers your call asks “Hey by the way, are you calling because of our flyer?”

You answer “yes”.

He then asks “What color paper is it on?”

And you tell him that it’s light blue.

This business has color coded the papers, so that they placed light blue flyers at Target, pink flyers at Walmart, and yellow ones at Kroger.

Using this info, they can tell which parking lot generates the most business, and they can fine tune it over time.

Leaving flyers is very labor intensive and time-consuming, but today, we tend to use more digital marketing techniques. Call tracking is one of them.

Flyer on windshield
Flyer on a windshield

What is Call Tracking?

Call tracking is a system that allows businesses to track and analyze phone calls made to their business. It works by assigning a unique phone number to each marketing campaign or advertising channel. When a customer calls that number, the system logs the call, providing valuable data on how a customer reached out to your shop.

For example, say you have a billboard near a bad intersection. On that billboard, you have a phone number listed – but it’s not your primary number – instead, it’s a special number you bought that is only used on billboards.

Now anytime you view a call log for that number, you can tell how many people called because of your billboard. If that number is very low, you can use that info to determine that billboard advertising isn’t working very well for your shop.

Another example is your website. You can place a unique phone number there too. When someone calls that number, it instantly forwards to your main number, but leaves a record of how many calls came from your website.

To belabor the point, let’s include one more scenario. Let’s say you’re running Facebook ads, with a goal of getting people to call in. You guessed it, we use a unique phone number there too.

Why Should We Track Calls to Our Shop?

Here are just a few of the benefits of using call tracking for your body shop:

Measure your Marketing ROI

Call tracking helps you measure the effectiveness of your marketing efforts by showing you which campaigns, sources, or locations are driving phone calls to your business. This information allows you to focus your marketing budget on the channels that are producing the best results, improving your return on investment.

Better Targeting

When you know how callers found you, you can tailor your marketing efforts to reach the right audience and increase the likelihood of converting them into customers.

For example, you may find that certain marketing messages or calls to action are more effective at driving phone calls than others. Perhaps Google Ads are generating more calls than Facebook Ads, or your free Bing Places Listing is knocking it out of the park, while your banner ad on the local radio station’s website is turning out to be a waste of money. 

Use this info to do more of what’s working, and cut out the stuff that doesn’t get results.

Business Insights

Call tracking software provides a wealth of data and analytics that can help you better understand your marketing efforts and make informed decisions about your business. You can use this data to identify areas for improvement, track the performance of your campaigns, and optimize your marketing strategy.

Some of the things you can learn about your calls through reporting include:

  • Number of missed calls
  • Number of answered calls
  • Number of first-time callers
  • Average call duration
  • Number of calls per employee 
  • What days and times have the highest call volume
  • Which campaign the call came from
  • What keyword led the caller to you
  • And more

How Do You Implement Call Tracking?

There are a few ways to implement call tracking for your body shop. One option is to use software that integrates with your current phone system. This type of software allows you to track and analyze calls made to your business, as well as providing additional features such as call recording and call routing.

Another option is to use a virtual phone number service, which assigns a unique phone number to each marketing campaign or advertising channel. When a person calls the virtual number, the call is forwarded to your business phone and the call tracking system optionally records and analyzes the call. These numbers can be as low as $1 and some change per month!

In most cases you do not need any new phone hardware, calls are simply forwarded to your existing phone system. Some systems basically forward calls and show a simple report, while more advanced systems can integrate with your customer database or CRM and record and attach calls to a customer record.

Recorded call from a collision repair customer
Store call recordings in a CRM

For instance, a prospect named Bill Jones calls your shop to discuss collision damage on his Toyota. Your system can automatically record the call and store it along with any notes you made during the call. Afterwards, you can easily replay the recording to double check any details you may have missed.

There are loads of systems available on the market with varying prices, but some popular ones include CallRail, Invoca, and CallTrackingMetrics.

You May Already Have Some Tracking Capability

If you have claimed your Google Business Profile you are likely already using some basic call tracking. When someone searches body shops on Google, and then sees your listing, they can click directly on your phone number or on the “Call” button. 

Either way, when that happens, Google tracks the call for you. If you have admin access to the GBP account you’ll get a weekly email summarizing the number of calls you received via Google Search and Google Maps, as well as some other useful information, such as how many people viewed your listing, asked for directions, viewed your photos, and more.

Google Call Tracking for Body Shops
Google Business Profile

Even though this is great info to have, it only shows calls made from Google. Using a call tracking system gives you a more comprehensive view of where your calls come from.

Final Thoughts

Call tracking is a valuable tool for collision shops looking to improve their marketing efforts and understand the sources of phone calls. 

If you’re ready to get started tracking calls for your shop, reach out for more details. Call my tracked number now!

Oh and one more thing, when you call, be sure to ask about the “Missed Call Text Back” feature!

Google Business Profile Special Offer

We'll add your business to Google (or claim it) for you. No messing around to figure it out yourself, let us handle it!

Only $149
The Power of Call Tracking for Auto Body Shops
Jason Ferguson

About Jason Ferguson

Jason has been a graphic designer since 1994 and started building websites in 1997. Since then he's learned countless new marketing skills and loves helping companies get more customers using digital marketing techniques. Jason founded Conspicuous Digital in 2017 and focuses on helping collision repair shops with their marketing.

< More Blog Posts