How increasing perceived security on a primary donation page for desktop devices can impact donor conversion Experiment ID: #12993

Billy Graham Evangelistic Association

Experiment Summary

Timeframe: 2/26/2019 - 3/27/2019

One of the most common reasons web visitors don’t complete transactions online is a perceived lack of security. Knowing this, Billy Graham Evangelical Association wondered if their primary donation pathway was losing potential donors because it didn’t visually represent how secure it was. They created a special security box around the credit card section of form and added a padlock into the shaded box to represent that the form was secure. This didn’t make the form more secure—it was already PCI compliant and had the highest levels of security. All these design tweaks did was increase perception of security with the end user. They launched an A/B test to see if it increased donor conversion as they hypothesized.

Research Question

Will adding visual elements increase the perception of form security increase donor conversion on desktop devices?



C: Without Perceived Security
T1: With Perceived Security


Treatment Name Conv. Rate Relative Difference Confidence
C: Without Perceived Security 49.9%
T1: With Perceived Security 60.1% 20.4% 100.0%

This experiment has a required sample size of 184 in order to be valid. Since the experiment had a total sample size of 3,926, 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
× 20.4% increase in conversion rate
× 0% increase in average gift

Key Learnings

Adding visual elements to increase the perception of security on the donation form increased donor conversion by 20% on desktop devices. 

This confirms our hypothesis that there is a segment of donors who experience anxiety when making a donation around the issue of security. The tactic that we tested helped to calm their fear, reduce friction through the donation pathway, and ultimately convert more people into donors. 

This 20% increase in donor conversion has a significant impact on revenue for the organization because 67% of the overall revenue coming in from BGEA’s primary donation page is from desktop devices. 

What is interesting is that this same exact experiment on mobile/tablet saw a 16% decrease in donor conversion.

Because of this, we recommend rolling out the perceived security tactic on desktop only. 

Experiment Documented by...

Courtney Gaines

Courtney is a Vice President 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.