The Quick and Dirty Guide to A/B Testing Your Donation Page

Nonprofit Marketing Blog

Enter A/B testing. Although testing might seem a little scary if you’ve not done it, there are simple tests you can perform to ensure you’re getting the most out of your online donation pages. Set up a second donation page with that variable changed.

I Give It A ‘B’

The Agitator

Recently I received a Quarterly Impact Report from Possible , a nonprofit providing health care services in Nepal. It’s a modest-sized organization that has treated a bit over 300,000 patients in that one country since 2008.

Trending Sources

Roll out some testing to liven up those Summer months


We run a lot of multivariate tests on donation landing pages throughout the year. But when Summer rolls around, virtually every organization we work with sees a big seasonal drop-off in their visitor traffic and conversions on their top donation pages. Testing and Analysis A/B test

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3 Powerful Tools to Help You Optimize Your Nonprofit Website

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Crazy Egg lets you see what your website visitors are doing with heat maps (a picture of where people click on your website), scroll maps (shows how far down the page people are scrolling to help determine where they abandon your page) and more. Use this link to get a 90-day free trial.

Ask and Answer - A Tale of Two Oranges

Social Media Bird Brain

Two Oranges by Carolyn Texera Sometimes it isn't a question of apples and oranges, but a question of two different flavors of oranges. not-for-profits clementine nuance Business not for profits A/B testing valencia ask Small nonprofit orangesThe small nonprofit where I'm currently contracting couldn't decide whether the solicitation letter they were sending out should have the ask upfront or in the middle.

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Searching Your Nonprofit’s Web Site—A vs. B Makes a Huge Difference

Getting Attention

I’m a devoted participant in Anne Holland’s blog, Which Test Won. Which do you think works best, A vs. B? This is such a tiny difference.” ” Well, the truth is that tiny differences in layout and design can make a huge difference in your results.

Proof Point #2: Email Subject Line Length Matters, SOMETIMES

Getting Attention

The best email subject lines are short [50 characters or less]…and provide the reader with a reason to explore your message further. What’s a nonprofit communicator to do? Are hit with a way-off marketing request.

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Day in the Life of a Nonprofit Communicator – Thomas Negron

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Don’t be shy – tell us what you do in a typical day as a nonprofit communications pro. Catskill is a refuge for farmed animals rescued from cruelty and neglect. I have a call with a sales rep and request a proposal. It’s time for a walk!

Your Most Valuable Marketing Lesson Learned in 2011?

Getting Attention

I’d like to end the year by asking you to respond to a simple but vital question: What’s the biggest marketing lesson you learned (or re-learned) in 2011? Here are a few examples: Don’t fail to get a final proof before sending a brochure to the printer.

The 5 Questions Nonprofits Always Ask Me About Fundraising Emails

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Some about content, but a lot about mechanics. A good email appeal is part art and part mechanics. It dials up your emotions and proffers giving as a fix to outrage, fear or sadness, or as a display of loyalty, pride or duty. Next, A/B test your subject lines.

Ep237: How is Partnering with Nonprofits to Offer Unique Travel Experiences

Selfish Giving

Today on CauseTalk Radio , Megan and I talk to Michal Alter , Co-Founder and CEO, , about how this B-Corp is curating different local travel experiences — ranging from free to several thousand dollars per person — all in the name of social good!

Get Your Email Read

Getting Attention

I’m on vacation and NOT WORKING (unlike what’s become a bad pattern). Instead, I’m rejuvenating, clearing space, and building energy for a productive fall and winter. It’s a necessity for good creative and intellectual work, and sense of wellbeing. Heather is a web content and social media strategist who blogs at How to Reach People. Shape Your E-News around a Clear Brand, Message, and Call-to-Action. Use a strategic subject line.

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Download Your Multi-Channel Fundraising Campaign Worksheet [FREE]

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Or if you have been taking donations through your website, but want to take it to the next level, we have tips on how to optimize your webpage, run A/B tests, and segment your email list.

7 Online Donation Page Mistakes to Avoid

Fundraising 123

Has it been a while since you''ve updated your organization''s online donation page? When a donor goes to your donation form from your email appeal or website, do they feel like they have been transported to a different planet? A donation page that looks like your other campaign materials and your nonprofit''s website makes your donation experience familiar and seamless. Usability testing will help you uncover any issues that may derail a donor.

18 Email Subject Line Strategies That Will Increase Your Open Rates

Wild Woman Fundraising

Has it been a few weeks or a few months since you sent out your last one? Or there’s 4 ways to advocate for your cause, and you’re offering a free pdf about this! There’s no coincidence that this word happens a lot in movie trailers. A new monthly donor!

Cause Marketing and Your Crowdfunding Project

Cause Related Marketing

So how do you stand out before a crowd of would be funders? And aside from the technology of their underwear, they used a BOGO approach that benefits the Uganda-based organization AFRI-pads. And, as I’ve noted in the past, without effective sanitary napkins, schoolgirls in the developing world miss a lot of school because they stay home during their periods. Buy a pair of Thinx and they’ll donate enough money to manufacture 7 AFRI-pads, which will be given to those in need.

Your Boredom is a Bad Way to Measure Success

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

I get this question a fair amount, and it came up in the Direct Mail for Small Nonprofits E-Clinic this week: Once we find the voice and style that works for us, how much do we need to get creative every month? Getting creative is NOT a high value goal in direct mail. (I

Testing 101: 4 Steps for Optimizing Your Fundraising Approach

Fundraising 123

That is why testing is a must for nonprofits. We’re doing our causes a disservice each time we don’t test — potentially leaving money, actions, and opportunities on the table. Here’s a quick primer on how effective testing works: Step 1: Be clear on your goals.

How to get mobile donors to convert


For most nonprofits, there’s been a steady growth in the use of smart phones and tablets by visitors to their websites. This has led to a lot of consternation as organizations wrestle with the challenge of providing a better user experience for site visitors on smaller screens.

Where Does Fundraising Begin?

The Agitator

Well, not entirely, The Agitator would still give you a B+. As Godin says: “When the thing you sell has communication built in, when it is remarkable and worth talking about, when it changes the game–marketing seems a lot easier.

Mixed Links for Nonprofit Marketers

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Nancy Schwartz talks about A/B testing for websites and what a big difference tiny changes can make. Take a moment to answer their brief 4-question survey, NTEN 2012 Communication Mix. If you had busy week like I did, relax and enjoy some Mixed Links!

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Mixed Links for Nonprofit Marketers

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Our friends at Network for Good have compiled a list of charities that are providing relief to those affected by the recent tornadoes. If not, you should really consider simple A/B testing.

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5 tips for email optimization from the Obama campaign

Nonprofit Marketing Blog

In a recent MarketingSherpa webinar on email optimization , Director of Digital Analytics Amelia Showalter shared how President Barack Obama’s 2012 presidential campaign generated more than $500 million in online donations. The webinar is a great companion to our recent Fundraising123 piece, “ 4 Tips for Subject Lines That Work.” Here are a few especially important tips for optimizing your nonprofit email campaigns: 1. Are you doing any A/B testing?

Test your fundraising instincts

Nonprofit Marketing Blog

is a fun resource that regularly highlights A/B tests of emails, landing pages, and more. released their 2013 Email Testing Hall of Fame , a showcase of tests that nonprofit fundraisers can learn from. Which Test Won?

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Watch Your Pictures!

The Agitator

I subscribe to “Which Test Won” — a feed that proselytizes for A/B testing — both for the fun of testing my own instincts (and often disagreeing with their analysis) and just to remind myself that tweaks of copy, design and imagery, based upon testing, indeed matter. Here’s a recent test (actually a replay from 2009) that caught my eye, literally, because it was a test of two images. Even a guy can get this one right!

5 Killer Prospect Research Tools to Learn More About Your Current Donors

Fundraising Coach

The specific lyric that I’m referring to goes a little something like, “Sometimes you wanna go, where everybody knows your name, and they’re always glad you came.”. Why is this a great tool for your fundraising efforts? Political giving can say a lot about a donor.

All Cause Marketing is Local

Selfish Giving

Not that it’s a bellwether or anything, but outdoor retailer REI’s announcement last month that it will decentralize its presence on Twitter from one corporate handle to 53 local handles may be sign of things to come. Are you building a brand that consumers know, respect and love?

Would you like to learn how to grade your boss? Here’s your checklist

Wild Woman Fundraising

Are you a nonprofit employee? Do you want a clear system to figure out if your nonprofit boss is doing right by your organization or not? Or are you a nonprofit board member? Do you need a model to figure out how to make sure your nonprofit leader is doing a good job? Now you can grade your nonprofit Executive Director, rate your boss on a scale of 1-5 in each of these categories, giving them an A for all 5s, a B for all 4s, etc.

Acquisition: Direct Mail Testing – Part 1

The Agitator

The A/B road to infinity. The bread and butter of testing methodology has long been the A/B split test. If a nonprofit does 15 tests a year it will take 48 years to test all the possibilities!

Direct Mail Test Results

The Agitator

The Agitator has been featuring various A/B tests as reported on Which Test Won ? Here’s their first example of a head-to-head direct mail test … in this case, centered on the offer. Which offer wins: A $35 Special Membership or a $45 Membership + Dining Discounts? So far their tests have all been of the online variety. The test was conducted by Nebraska’s NPR station, and we have heaps of public TV & radio readers … so here it is.

6 Quick Behavioral Economics Lessons for Fundraisers

Nonprofit Marketing Blog

Professor Kessler encourages all nonprofit marketers to consider themselves to be scientists and to use simple A/B tests as experiments in their fundraising laboratory to sort out what will drive their donors to give more. Here’s a quick overview of six common concepts and how you can use them in your fundraising strategy. In a different study, donors were found to give more when they were recognized as consistent donors to a fund.

7 Ways to Make 2014 the Year of the Donor

Nonprofit Marketing Blog

What this looks like for your organization may be different than for your nonprofit peers, but here are a few basics to get you started: 1. Have a solid plan. To do: Create a comprehensive donor stewardship plan that complements your overall marketing strategy and retention goals.

Why Not Raise More Money?

The Agitator

Not surprisingly, it turned out to be a consulting pitch from a firm called Social Velocity. What that firm would do to provide a broad assessment of revenue potential is: Interview stakeholders. That said, reiterating the message above — and emphasized by several of our readers … the ‘solution’ is: a) probably a mashup; and b) definitely one you need to validate for your own organization.

37 Must-Have Web Visitor Strategies

The Agitator

All together, a terrific checklist, provided at the recent Bridge Conference by Sue Anne Reed (The Engage Group), Allyson Kapin (RAD Campaign), and Rob Manix (Defenders of Wildlife). Use a prominent donate button. Give visitors a reason to provide additional information. Include a clear call to action on every page. Have a clear goal for each landing page and remove any clutter. A/B test the donation landing page to find the best conversion.

Simple E-tail Cause Marketing

Cause Related Marketing

There’s a lot of fundraising going on at retail these days, oftentimes the easy to execute paper icon campaigns. A lot is at stake for cause marketers. Worldwide e-tail represents no less than a $770 billion business. Cause-Related Marketing does a world of good.

How to Use CRM + Donor Management Software to Talk to Anyone


Whether you're reporting to your board, supporting teams in different departments, or just trying to get through to a specific type of donor, we've broken down all the ways your CRM + donor software can help. FYI - this is a long read. Here’s a quick-start template to get you going. ).

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Raise more money online with a great headline


If you could change just one thing on your website’s donation page and get a 50% lift in the conversion rate, you’d probably do it in a heartbeat. To understand what a lift of that magnitude could mean for your online fundraising program, imagine your donation page is converting 12% of visitors, comprised of 10 donations a day averaging $50 ($500 daily revenue). And getting the answer is easy with A/B testing.

People Buy People: How Are You Connecting Your Constituents to Your Organization and Each Other?

Marketing for Nonprofits

"You can be part of a well funded startup, have all new planes, a cool product, leather seats, live TV, cool snacks. Chances are it's a little bit of each - product, place and people - that draws you to your favorite coffee bar.

Acquisition: Direct Mail Testing – Part 2

The Agitator

The problem occurs when an organization or its consultant creates and mails a test package with numerous test elements. Or to put it in the vernacular, a whole bunch of stuff is changed. Because the results reveal only a thumbs up or thumbs down for the entire package.

But Why?

Ann Green

You’ll answer a question, and she’ll respond with “but why?” A lot of our communication isn’t focused on why something is important. As you work on your messages, pretend your donor is a four-year-old who keeps asking “but why?” Give a specific example.