The Heritage Foundation

How layering a donation ask impacts overall revenue

Experiment ID: #80368

The Heritage Foundation

Founded in 1973, The Heritage Foundation is a research and educational institution—a think tank—whose mission is to formulate and promote conservative public policies based on the principles of free enterprise, limited government, individual freedom, traditional American values, and a strong national defense.

Experiment Summary

Timeframe: 10/06/2014 - 10/10/2014

The Heritage Foundation and its sister organization Heritage Action For America wanted to run a joint campaign to raise money for both organizations and highlight the individual strengths of each organization. This campaign concept mirrored a direct mail concept that included two separate reply envelopes, one for each organization.

Since the organizations are independent from one another, they needed to have two donation forms. Initially, the campaign put both of these donation forms on the same page, right next to each other. We developed a treatment that layered these two asks, one after the other, with the ask for Heritage Action first.

Research Question

We hypothesized that by asking the user to make one decision at a time and layering the two donation forms, we could reduce mental friction and decision friction on the page and increase conversion rate and revenue.


C: Multi-Give
T1: Serial-Give


  Treatment Name Revenue per Visitor Relative Difference Confidence Average Gift
C: Multi-Give $1.55 $28.33
T1: Serial-Give $3.08 98.8% 100.0% $64.39

This experiment was validated using 3rd party testing tools. Based upon those calculations, a significant level of confidence was met so these 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
× 12.5% decrease in conversion rate
× 127.3% increase in average gift
98.8% increase in revenue

Key Learnings

Layering the two asks meant accepting a trade-off: the site visitor would not be allowed to choose to give to either organization. So, it was not a surprise when overall conversion dipped 12.5%. However, the layered asks resulted in more people choosing to give to both organizations, which had a significant impact on average gift. Overall, layering the two asks resulted in a revenue increase of 98.8% — nearly doubling the previous revenue per visitor.

This provided a great learning for future campaigns — and was immediately put into use on the main Heritage donation form. After a donor makes a gift on that form, they are immediately offered the opportunity to give to Heritage Action as well. This has resulted in an additional, consistent revenue stream for Heritage Action.

Experiment Documented by NextAfter

Question about experiment #80368

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