How relevance and evidentials impact conversion on a serial ask Experiment ID: #8448

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: 1/5/2018 - 1/30/2018

The serial ask found on The Heritage Foundation donation pages has become a significant source of revenue and new donors for their sister organization, Heritage Action for America. When a donor makes a gift to Heritage, they are shown a screen that contains both the thank you message and a value proposition for Heritage Action. There is then a single text field that is pre-filled with the gift amount they just gave. Historically, 1 out of every 10 donors would give an immediate second gift when prompted this way.

What is unique about this offer is that that value proposition used on the page has not changed in the 2.5 years since this offer was first launched. Given the volume of people that see the offer, it has been challenging to validate something new.

However, during the year end campaign, we decided to test new language for this offer. We wanted to see if a more relevant value proposition, one that spoke to areas of work that were actively being debated in the news, would be more appealing than the Control. We saw a lift during year end but given the high urgency of the time period and the relatively small sample size, we wanted to re-test this for a longer period of time and across more donation forms.

Research Question

Will a more relevant value proposition increase conversions over an evidential-based value proposition?


C: Original
T1: New HAFA Language


Treatment Name Conv. Rate Relative Difference Confidence
C: Original 2.4%
T1: New HAFA Language 3.9% 61.3% 100.0%

This experiment has a required sample size of 1,068 in order to be valid. Since the experiment had a total sample size of 17,902, 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
× 61.3% increase in conversion rate
× 0% increase in average gift

Key Learnings

We found that the more relevant value proposition significantly outperformed the evidential-based one that had been used for the past 2.5 years. What is amazing is that this means 1 out of every 5 donors decided to give an immediate second gift when prompted.

This is an area that we will need to monitor over time to ensure the conversion rate is maintained. If it does experience decline, this may indicate that the relevance of the offer is no longer as strong and needs to be refreshed and re-tested.

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Experiment Documented by...

Kevin Peters

Kevin is the Chief Technology Officer at NextAfter. If you have any questions about this experiment or would like additional details not discussed above, please feel free to contact them directly.