A return on investment

Donors want to give, but they want the giving experience to be one they feel good about. For online donors, feeling good means a smooth, efficient experience, one without any problems or snags.

During the AFP 50th International Conference on Fundraising, Nathaniel Ward of the Heritage Foundation, Tim Kachuriak of Next After and Dan Gillett of Kimbia identified those problems or snags as friction, and they said it can have an effect on return on investment (ROI).

Their advice was to reduce friction in the online giving experience, and they said it could be done with the following steps:

  • Identify the goal. Is it capturing the maximum number of gifts, drawing the largest number of new donors, maximizing the average gift, driving the most revenue from monthly gifts, getting the most people to leave a comment? Ultimately, it’s about fundraising.
  • Be sure to measure results. This can be done with tools and services that do tracking.
  • Implement a radical design that reduces friction. For a test to get a meaningful fit, a redesign should be meaningfully different.
  • Run and A/B split test. Randomly display both versions of the page to visitors to see which performs best against the goal.
  • Validate the results. The experiment should be repeatable. If the test fails to get a lift, find out why.