What is Dynamic Number Insertion, and Which Companies Need It?

Dynamic phone number insertion (DNI) is a process that marketers use to measure the impact of digital efforts on  inbound phone calls. When a lead clicks though to your site from any advertisement, DNI technology displays a number that’s unique to the specific search engine, web page, keyword or other source. By tracking call tracking metrics in a CRM such as Salesforce.com, marketers can then gain a real-time view of which advertisements are generating leads, opportunities and revenue from phone calls.

DNI Dynamic Number Insertion

Marketers often use DNI on local ad campaigns to ensure that prospects in certain cities or regions are presented a local phone number.

Imagine that you have a business that sells travel packages, and you advertise those packages on Google AdWords. So long as prospects clicking your ad fill out a web form, you have complete visibility into ad conversion metrics. But many people follow  a web search with a phone call. The moment, they call your standard office phone, you lose all visibility into conversion metrics.

This is how most businesses operate, yet it’s painfully ineffective. The phone is no longer just something that facilitates voice or text communications – it’s now a data-driven technology that can inform the decisions you make while running your business.

The moment prospects call, all the resources you put into AdWords campaigns, content marketing and social media go right down the drain since you can’t associate your efforts with results.

Here’s where dynamic number insertion comes in. With DNI, every time a customer reaches your website, prospects automatically see a phone number that’s unique to the channel, campaign or keyword that led them to your site. If this happened on your site, wouldn’t it be easier to decide where to spend your marketing budget if you always knew which content and keywords were driving the best calls?

Which Companies Need DNI?

The short answer is any company that does any business on the phone.

Here’s the longer answer. At my first marketing job, I ran paid search campaigns for a B2C business that closed almost all of their deals over the phone. Of course I had killer AdWords analytics that showed how my paid search keywords were driving web conversions, but I had no way of reporting how my ads were impacting phone calls. I knew, in a general sense, that my efforts were benefiting my business, but I had no way to prove it. As many marketers know, there are few things more frustrating than putting in work without being able to take credit for good results.

Discovering call tracking was one of those “where have you been all my life?” moments. Suddenly, I could see— in real time—exactly how much revenue every ad, campaign and keyword was generating.

Displaying Local Phone Numbers

Beyond getting tracking metrics, another reason to use DNI is to present a local phone number to certain customers. In many industries, the presence of a local phone number can increase the odds that a prospect calls you right away. This is especially true in certain service industries, such as law or healthcare.

For example, imagine that you have offices in San Francisco, New York and Austin. You probably already have unique ad campaigns or ad groups associated with these areas. Displaying a local phone number to these prospects is as simple as associating a RingDNA number with each ad group or campaign. This way, prospects arriving at your site after clicking a Google ad from Austin will be presented a local phone number.

How RingDNA’s DNI Works

RingDNA was conceived by marketers who know how valuable DNI technology is, but wanted to make it as easy as possible to set up so that marketers could focus on the impact of calls on ROI. Here’s how our DNI works:

  1. Use our tracking wizards to instantly provision unique phone numbers for any marketing channel.
  2. Add a snippet of RingDNA javascript to every page on your site that contains a phone number. Very often, this is a one-time global code insertion.
  3. When leads click through to your site from a social media post, paid search keyword, specific URL, or any other online effort, they’re assigned a third-party cookie that keeps track of their referral source.
  4. As soon as customers reach your site, they’ll automatically see the unique number you associated with that the ad or keyword that referred them.

The Benefits of DNI

Optimize Your Budget in Real Time

Anyone who has ever been tasked to manage their business’ or a client’s paid search budget knows how important it is to have up-to-the-moment insight into which keywords are offering the best returns. Without phone call tracking, it can often be next-to-impossible to know how paid search is impacting phone-based revenue.

Provision Local and Toll Free Numbers

DNI technology also gives you the ability to dynamically replace your site’s numbers with a local number. This can be helpful for national businesses that want to establish a local presence, such as national real estate or travel agencies. In our post on A/B testing phone numbers on landing pages, we discuss the benefits of using DNI to serve up local numbers based on geotargeting variables in AdWords.

Report Social Media ROI

Social media managers often have to settle for reporting growth metrics based on likes and follows rather than the revenue driven by their efforts. But DNI allows social marketers to provision phone numbers associated with social content. The result is that businesses can finally see how social is impacting their bottom line.

Track Channels, Campaigns and Keywords

One of the best things about DNI is that it gives marketers the flexibility to track calls with different levels of granularity. For example, you can quickly see how a specific channel like Twitter impacts leads, opportunities and revenue closed over the phone. If you want to delve deeper, you can also track at the campaign or even keyword level.

Since discovering call tracking, I no longer struggle to prove that my efforts are beneficial. I can see, in real time, which ads are working and which aren’t. And I can, as a result, invest more in the efforts that drive the best returns.


About the Author

Jesse Davis

Jesse Davis is a sales and marketing strategist and Sr. Content Marketing Manager at RingDNA. Over the past decade, Davis has honed his business communications skills working as an inside sales manager, business writer and agency marketer. He is a proponent of utilizing platform technology and evidence-based methodologies to optimize creative campaigns, marketing ROI and sales performance.


  1. Awesome article. I love dynamic call tracking & I think it will become more and more popular as companies realise the importance of measuring offline conversions as well as online conversions.

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