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UK Pay Per Call service to be withdrawn

ingenio/MIVA not dialing up the numbers?

1:51 pm on Mar 19, 2007 (gmt 0)

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The pay per call service offered by ingenio/MIVA will cease on April 5th according to an email I recieved from MIVA today.

In analysing the importance of this we should remember that the the UK operations of MIVA do not suffer from as much criticism as the US arm.

What does this withdrawal tell us? Is it more to do with MIVA or a general lack of interest in the market?

How do we encourage local businesses to adopt performance based advertising?

12:48 pm on Mar 21, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Will they also be stopping the 118 118 liaison? or will 118 118 take it in house?

(Or am I asking such an obscure question that nobody knows what I am talking about?)

When the pay per call model launched, I confess to having doubts about the projections being made. I have the same problems with claims about the size of the mobile search market, at least at the moment. People frankly don't want to search using a phone and by the same token, people don't want to call someone direct from a web advert without first seeing the website to check they are in the right place.

There's no doubt that these attitide COULD change in other delivery channels - and the MIVA/118 partnership was one of them in my opinion - but there the model broke - they couldn't charge by the call for some reason, only by the text message displaying the number.

2:16 pm on Mar 21, 2007 (gmt 0)

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When Miva launched pay per call, they heralded it as the new begining. At least they gave it a go, and they were always very good at doing that. The 118 idea was also great, but I don't think much came out of that. Wasn't it advertising on text messages - so when one called to get the number for McDonalds, on the footer was BK's number - if I remember correctly. Quite cool really.

Miva was always a mini Google in terms of innovating (image ads, pay per call etc) simply leagues apart though.

I see they have an Adsense product out there - any idea how well that does? I saw it on the UK Scotsman newspaper web site which surprised me!

2:54 pm on Mar 21, 2007 (gmt 0)


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people don't want to call someone direct from a web advert without first seeing the website to check they are in the right place.

Exactly, there isn't enough info in most PPC ads in most industries to make someone want to call. You clck an ad, review info and if that sparks your interest, then you take the next step - call, email, drive out to the store or property. On the other hand, integrating Skype or something similar to make it easier to call the business behind the website while on the website might increase conversion rates a bit.

3:12 pm on Mar 21, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I tried pay-per-call before. Never got a valid lead from it.

The only calls I got were from competitors and people who misdialed and got to me, or found my # listed somewhere.

Ingenio was recycling old 800#'s and due to that they would be old support #'s for defunct products, companies etc.

We'd get calls like "Do you have part #888444 I need it for my tractor and it says to call this phone #"

Keep in mind I'm a web design and internet marketing company...

yeah... so pay-per-call great in concept is just not working...

If Google wants to improve on this idea they could offer to remotely host a contact form and give you a trackable 800#, then you make a clone of your site with no email contact, only this google form and google phone #.

You would then, in turn, pay only per call or per lead... I think they could make that work!

3:27 pm on Mar 21, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Having worked with a number of clients some of whom introduced the service my understanding is that it just didnt work - full stop.

The adverts took up space on a web page and it was space that could have been used to display PPC adverts. The client had the option of "do i display an advert that tells the user to phone XYZ (often a financial/loan or similar type advert)and get say 1.50 earnings if they phone it, or do i display a PPC advert for the same thing where a simple click to view it may pay say 25p."

The feed back i had was that internet surfers are happy to visit sponsored listings but when it comes to phoning up a company its too much effort. The bottom line was that a PPC advert produced much greater earnings than the Pay Per Call was despite pay per call offering generous sometimes even greater than 30X the earnings per transaction.

In all, i do think it was a good idea and right for miva to try something new and different in the market.

You never know this concept could work yet if introduced via the mobile phone platform. ie where the users sees the add whilst holding his mobile phone - now that COULD be effective


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