How ordering a donation form into steps impacts donor conversion - NextAfter

How ordering a donation form into steps impacts donor conversion

Experiment ID: #33628


FamilyLife® has been committed to helping individuals find biblical help for their marriage and family relationships. Through the Weekend to Remember® marriage getaways, FamilyLife Today® radio broadcasts, The Art of Marriage® video event, and the many other resources and content, God has used FamilyLife to restore hope for millions of couples and transform their lives.

Experiment Summary

Timeframe: 07/16/2020 - 10/17/2020

Through previous testing with other organizations, we found that ordering the donation form into steps has led to an increase in conversion rate on donation pages. Knowing this, we wanted to see the impact that this tactic would have on FamilyLife’s primary donation page. To test into this, we developed a treatment that took each section of the donation form and made them into steps – “walking” people through the donation pathway.

Research Question

Can we increase donor conversion by breaking the donation form into ordered steps?


C: Control
T1: Stepped Form


  Treatment Name Conv. Rate Relative Difference Confidence Average Gift
C: Control 22.1% $0.00
T1: Stepped Form 22.5% 1.7% 9.2% $0.00

This experiment has a required sample size of 91,435 in order to be valid. Unfortunately, the required sample size was not met and a level of confidence above 95% was not met so the experiment results are not valid.

Key Learnings

Overall, there was no difference in donor conversion. As we dug into the data a bit more, we found some interesting results within individual segments. Take a look:

  • New visitors had a 42.4% decrease in donations with a 98% level of confidence.
  • Returning visitors had a 49.0% increase in donations with a 97% level of confidence.

These two segments, new and returning, had opposite results. This is why the overall results were flat. Our hypothesis in the decrease from new visitors is that the steps actually created friction to the giving process causing the page to look like MORE work to fill out (since there were steps to it), rather than our hypothesis of thinking that the steps would help the giving process. Returning visitors were more familiar with the donation page and giving process, so the steps may have helped them get through the form faster – resulting in the increase in donor conversion.

This shows us that users’ motivation is dramatically different, and implementing new tactics like this can potentially have a significant impact – positive and negative – on certain segments.

Experiment Documented by Courtney Gaines
Courtney Gaines is Vice President at NextAfter.

Question about experiment #33628

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