click-to-talk (CTC)

Click-to-call (CTC), also called click-for-talk, is a technology that converts Web traffic into voice telephone connections using VoIP (Voice over IP)...(Continued)

Click-to-call (CTC), also called click-for-talk or click-to-dial, is a technology that converts Web traffic into voice telephone connections using VoIP (Voice over IP). A true CTC service offers immediate voice connectivity in real time, in contrast to click-to-callback, a CRM (customer relationship management) technology that enables a person browsing a company's Web site to leave a phone number to which a representative can return the call.

A CTC service can be used with any computer that is connected to the Internet through a Web browser. Advanced cellular telephone sets also support CTC service. Phone numbers appear as hyperlinks on the Web page to which the browser is connected. The call is initiated by clicking on the hyperlink.

For businesses, an important advantage of CTC technology is the ability to instantly convert Internet-based visitors into potential customers. A CTC hyperlink can be embedded in the main part of a Web page, in a banner advertisement or even in an e-mail message. Phone connections take place in the same way as those dialed from a conventional landline or mobile phone set. Google offers a click-to-callback service free of charge. Another vendor, SPG Solutions, offers true CTC service for a nominal fee. If calls are made from a mobile phone, the user pays the cell phone provider for the airtime, exactly as would be done for any other call made from that phone set. Cell phone provider charges are incurred in addition to the charge, if any, made by the CTC vendor.

This was first published in January 2008

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