Media Research Center

How incentive and 3rd party credibility affects conversion rate

Experiment ID: #915

Media Research Center

The Media Research Center (MRC) is the nation’s premier media watchdog. The sole mission is to expose and neutralize the propaganda arm of the Left: the national news media.

Experiment Summary

Ended On: 03/12/2013

As part of an email acquisition campaign, Media Research Center visitors were offered a free bumper sticker in exchange for their name, email, and home address.  They were then taken to a landing page with a contextualized giving opportunity.  This page had historically produced a 0.8% immediate conversion rate.

We had recently completed an experiment that improved the general donation form conversion rate to 1.6%.  With this being higher, we wanted to see if the newly validated general donation page could convert better than the existing contextualized page.

The new treatment did not mention the petition they have just signed but did include language about a matching gift opportunity and emphasized 3rd party credibility indicators, such as quotes from well known figures, as a way to lower the anxiety associated with giving a gift online.

Research Question

Which donation page will produce the greatest donor conversion rate?


C: Contextualized Donation Page
T1: General Donation Page


  Treatment Name Conv. Rate Relative Difference Confidence Average Gift
C: Contextualized Donation Page 0.80% $25.00
T1: General Donation Page 2.6% 230.0% 98.9% $20.35

This experiment has a required sample size of 387 in order to be valid. Since the experiment had a total sample size of 1,271, and the level of confidence is above 95% the experiment results are valid.

Flux Metrics Affected

The Flux Metrics analyze the three primary metrics that affect revenue (traffic, conversion rate, and average gift). This experiment produced the following results:

    0% increase in traffic
× 230.0% increase in conversion rate
× 18.6% decrease in average gift
168.6% increase in revenue

Key Learnings

The new treatment outperformed the contextualized donation page by 230%.  This proved the incentive behind the matching gift language and increased credibility outweighed the specificity of associating the gift with their previous action.

This learning led to ideas for additional tests such as including this language and imagery on other contextualized pages to help lower anxiety while maintaining the specificity that comes from a contextualized donation ask.

Experiment Documented by Tim Kachuriak
Tim Kachuriak is Chief Innovation and Optimization Officer of NextAfter.

Question about experiment #915

If you have any questions about this experiment or would like additional details not discussed above, please feel free to contact them directly.