How the presence of a privacy statement affects email acquisition - NextAfter
Harvest Ministries

How the presence of a privacy statement affects email acquisition

Experiment ID: #4354

Harvest Ministries

Harvest Christian Fellowship exists to bring Christians closer to God and to bring nonbelievers to a saving relationship with Him by showing how God's Word and faith in Him are applicable and relevant to everyday life.

Experiment Summary

Timeframe: 06/02/2016 - 06/16/2016

Harvest has a daily devotional from Greg Laurie. On the sign-up page for this devotional, there is a privacy statement under the form fields that reads “We take privacy seriously and hate spam, so we’ll carefully protect your e-mail address.” While this statement is meant to give a person peace of mind that their information is secure and safe, we questioned if this copy actually created anxiety in someone’s mind when they came to sign-up. Would this present an element of friction rather than eliminate it? We did a split test on this page of the control vs a treatment where we simply removed that privacy statement.

Research Question

Does the privacy statement cause friction in the sign-up process?


C: With privacy statement
T1: Without privacy statement


  Treatment Name Conv. Rate Relative Difference Confidence
C: With privacy statement 27.1%
T1: Without privacy statement 18.1% -33.3% 99.1%

This experiment has a required sample size of 175 in order to be valid. Since the experiment had a total sample size of 682, 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
× 33.3% decrease in conversion rate
× 0% increase in average gift

Key Learnings

Our hypothesis that the privacy statement possibly created friction in the sign-up process was wrong. The control, with the privacy statement, had an increase in email sign-ups by 33.3%. Their is a mental cost (friction) associated with a person giving their personal information to an organization. The privacy statement in this sign-up process alleviated that cost. People want to know that their information is safe and secure when they give it to us.

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

Question about experiment #4354

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