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Vossy
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Great Question –

Totally crazy if this site is a local business.

There are two reasons

1) …any SEO worth their salt will / should be interested in contacts / sales and if you ever conversion test a website the first thing you will do is add the phone number and a contact us form to every page. I’ve never seen it reduce contact outcomes.

2) the connection between google places (plus / maps) relies on the name address and phone profile and it nearly always works better if it’s on every page.

But tracking numbers do mess this up so that might be the reason for hiding the contact number. Google is looking for a local number that is the same as the one on Places not a 1800 / 1300 tracking number. That might be a reason but I’d suggest that the value is out weighed by the benefit of getting phone calls.

Phone calls convert about 4-7X better than contacts and you should do what ever it takes to get them

If you need to track you could do what True Local does and hide part of the number and then count the “onclick” events in Analytics.

Thanks again for the great question. Has anyone found a good solution for optimising phone calls (not clicks or contacts) from AdWords to the keyword level yet?

Cheers