How do you know where you’re going if you don’t know where you’ve been? At Pursuant, we believe that data informed decisions drive strategy and ultimately help you achieve better results. Know your numbers…it’s our mantra.
One of the easiest places to measure results and effect change immediately is in the online channel. Online fundraising continues to be a primary channel for revenue generation – 79% of the organizations surveyed in the Convio Online Benchmark Report saw increases year over year from 2009 to 2010. The online channel is here to stay, so we need to pay attention to it starting now.
At Pursuant, we believe there are three imperative metrics to measure daily. Website traffic, conversion rates, and average gift size play a significant role in online revenue. We have found that each metric directly affects revenue, and when managed correctly, small incremental improvements for each component can create exponential impact on the bottom line. To learn more, contact us for a free online assessment.
1.Website Traffic: When you want to know something about an organization, what do you do to find out about it? Nine times out of 10 you “Google it,” right? What do you think your constituents are doing when they hear about you? Your website is often the first introduction someone has to who you are, what you do and why you do it, so make the experience an enjoyable one.
Do something now: Offer compelling content for free, optimize your site for search engine visibility, don’t be afraid to use paid search or advertising, or consider an integrated media approach promoting your site in other media channels such as mail, radio, DRTV, billboards and social media.
2.Conversion Rates: Conversation rates are measured by the number of website visitors to your site who voluntarily give their email address so that ongoing communication can begin. Since website conversion rates dropped this year from 2.2% to 2.0%, it’s important now more than ever to have a strategy in place that incents website visitors to engage with you and share their email address. Keep sign-ups on your site simple and tell visitors why they should do it. Then don’t abuse the privilege. Keep messages meaningful and relevant to the constituents’ interest so that you remain in the inbox and not the trash.
Do something now: Leverage free or “members only” content, or consider a premium offer to incent website registration.
3.Average Gift: In 2010 the average online gift was up to $91.94 in 2020 from $83.44 in 2009. (Average gift is measured as the sum of each organization’s online donations divided by the number of online gifts, which gives us an indication of the average amount each constituent gave.) This is good news! This increase in value of each online donor makes online donor acquisition a key focus for 2011 and further indicates this is a fundraising channel worth your attention. So, what are you doing to acquire new donors online and how are you communicating to them? Is your ask timely and relevant? And are you following up with each donor with updates after the gift is made? What’s your game plan?
Do something now: Don’t be afraid to test – e-appeals timing, subject line, varying content to optimize your results. Use a dynamic ask-string with a stretch gift to put the right ask in front of the right constituent at the right time. Optimize your donation form, eliminating any friction in the process. Be sure to be thankful.
Benchmarking is an invaluable tool in measuring your success year over year. Are you ahead of where you were last year? Are you maintaining status quo…or have you fallen behind? How do your results compare to your peers? We encourage you to check out the 2011 Convio Online Benchmark Study and let us start helping you measure your results. Let us know if we can help you evaluate your results and bring an overall lift to your online fundraising efforts. We hope you will continue your efforts in tackling this important channel of fundraising and communication.
Source: Benchmarking Data courtesy of the 2011 Convio Online Benchmark Report