Fundraise Smarter

Talk Nerdy To Me: New Data On Donation Pages

Posted by Andrew Littlefield on May 4, 2015 10:00:00 AM

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Have you ever looked at your website’s donation page stats and thought to yourself:

“Is this good? Should my page be doing better?”

Wonder no more! I’ve dug into the numbers for you to find out how well a typical donation page performs, the value of a donation page visitor, average donation size, the devices donors use, and more!

Before I get to all that, I have a confession:

I love whacky stats, particularly when it comes to sports. If you ever pay attention to that ticker on the bottom of the screen on ESPN, you’ll see all sorts of strange stats about upcoming games.

They range from highly relevant:

“FSU is 29 and 1 in their last 30 games”

To complete non-sequiturs:

“The Jets complete 78% of their passes when the harvest moon falls on a Tuesday before games.”

Those are the most fun. But they’re also the least helpful.

Donation page stats on the other hand, are highly relevant and exceedingly helpful. The analytics on the performance of your donation page help you do two very important things:

  1. Measure the effectiveness of your current efforts

  2. Predict the outcomes of future efforts based on past performance

Both are important, but we’re focusing on #2 today. If you know how effective your donation page is, you can make reasonably accurate predictions of how your fundraising efforts will perform.

For example, if you know that for every 20 visitors your donation page receives, 1 of those visitors will donate, you can assume that if you drive 1000 visitors to that page, you’ll elicit 50 donations. If you know your average donation size is $100, you can predict that driving 1000 visits to your donation page should raise around $5000.

So if that ad campaign you plan on spending $2000 on can drive 1000 visitors, you should be in good shape.

Do you know these stats? You should!

But it helps to have a benchmark to measure these numbers against. So I crunched some numbers across dozens of donation pages with thousands of visitors to get an idea of just how effective donation pages are.

Donation Page Definition

A little definition is in order: these stats are for 24/7 donation pages, not crowdfunding pages. These are the pages that live on your organization’s site behind the “Donate” button on your homepage. Typically, these visitors are not being specifically appealed to to give to a campaign.

These numbers were calculated using data from the WeDidIt platform.

Value Per Visit (VPV)

On average, each visitor to a donation page was worth $10.10 in donations. To calculate this metric, we take the total number of donations divided by the total number of page visitors.

This is impressively high. Think about it: every visitor you drive to your donation page is worth $10 in donations! Now of course, every visitor to this page will not donate $10, but by spreading out the average of donations across all visitors, you can quantify the effectiveness of your fundraising efforts.

Donation Page Conversion Rate

The average conversion rate (number of visitors who completed a donation divided by total visitors) clocks in at 5.3%.

At face value, this may not seem overly impressive. However, when you compare this figure to the conversion rate of other fundraising methods, it starts to look much more appealing (Hah! Get it?). A 6% conversion rate from phone appeals would be satisfying for many fundraisers, as this would be a far more cost effective method of securing donors than face-to-face meetings.

Online donations take this a step further. It’s even more scalable than phone calls, and converts at nearly the same pace.

Average Donation Size

The average donation size on donation pages comes out at $190. Not too shabby! If you can manage to drive 100 visitors a month to this page, at a 5% conversion rate, that’s almost $1000 a month in revenue!

New vs. Returning Visitors

New visitors were 44% more likely to make a donation than return visitors! I find this very surprising, to be honest with you. Most studies show that consumers need to hear a message multiple times before they’re ready to make a purchase.

However, I think we can make a distinction between hearing a message and visiting a page. Chance are, if someone visits your donation page, they’ve already heard your message. They’ve decided to take an action and visit your donation page.

Once you have them there, you’d better get them the first time! Once they leave, it’s hard to get them back, and even the ones that do return are far less likely to follow through with a donation.

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Mobile Donation Page Visitors

In case you doubted the importance of mobile-responsive design, 24% of your donation page visitors arrive at your site via a mobile device. Of these, 61% arrived via a smartphone, compared to 39% using a tablet.

66% of the mobile visitors used an Apple device, followed up by a smattering of Samsung devices as the next most popular device used.

Donation Page Visitor Tech

Apple might rule the roost when it comes to mobile users, but Windows still commands the majority of donation page visitors using a desktop. 53% of donation page visitors used a Windows device versus 23% on a Mac. There was no difference between these two groups as far as likelihood to donate, however.

0.07% visited using a video game system, in case you were curious.

Time on Page

Visitors who donate spent almost 3x as long on the donation page as non-donors (4:38 vs. 1:36). This shouldn’t be surprising as donors had to type in their payment information. But hey, it’s still interesting and could indicate the importance of compelling copy on your donation page.

So...Now What?

Like I said at the start, some data is helpful, some isn’t. Does it really make a difference to you whether your donation page visitors are using a Windows device vs. a Mac device? Probably not.

But other stats are highly important, and actionable! Does it matter than 24% of your visitors are on a mobile device? Absolutely! Make that page mobile friendly! Does it matter that new visitors are 44% more likely to donate than return visitors? You bet! Optimize that page to capture donors the first time they visit.

If you know how well your page performs, you can measure the effectiveness of small changes. Maybe a new video will increase the conversion, maybe it will hurt it. They only way to know for sure is to have a baseline.

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Image credit: Flickr user Jase Lam

Topics: online fundraising, Fundraising Data,, donation pages,

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