Localized Fundraising: After $1.75 Million, How Are We Doing?

Mozilla is a global organization, we will always work to improve the donor experience for everyone, no matter where they might be on the planet. Last year 58.5% of total donations came from inside the United States, and 41.5% of campaign revenue came from outside the U.S.. This year we set an internal goal to switch the ratio to 55% non-US donations and 45%  US donations. Specifically we wanted to:

  • Localize the about:home EOY snippet for three more locales than in 2013, including India (IN); Indonesia (ID); and Spanish (ES). We ended up localizing for Spanish, but not India, and limited Indonesian. The number and diversity of languages spoken in India is so great we couldn’t execute localization in a quality way given our translation resources. It also became clear during the campaign that while Indonesians are among our biggest supporters and volunteers, donor response remains relatively low.
  • Increase the number of accepted currencies. We increased the number of accepted currencies from one (USD) to 16.
  • Increase the number of payment methods. In addition to adding 16 currencies we also began accepting bitcoin and added instructions for donating via bank transfer to our Ways to Give page. Bitcoin’s growing acceptance across the world makes it an attractive currency for some.

L10n provided outstanding support for this campaign, and the importance of high quality translation is reflected in our results. Now is a good time to check in to see if our efforts have paid off. We recently reached a milestone in the campaign: $1.75 million USD raised, though we still have a few days left until the campaign ends on December 31st. Analysis of the country-by-country giving trends compared to the 2013 year-end campaign revealed some exciting numbers:

  • The number of countries with total giving of at least $1000 increased. In 2013, Mozilla raised $1000 or more in 36 countries; this year donations from each of 49 countries totaled more than $1000 so far. That’s a 36% increase.
  • Overall, giving has increased in 140 of 176 countries and territories (80% of all locales).
    Giving at least doubled in 42 countries compared to 2013. Some of the most notable gains were in:

    • Argentina (increased 251.64% from $489 to $1,720)
    • Chile (increased 136.58% from $554 to $1,311)
    • Colombia (increased 489.13% from $173 to $1,019)
    • Czech Republic (increased 103.92% from $970 to $1,978)
    • Hong Kong  (increased 161.28% from $1,311 in 2013 to $3,425 in 2014)
    • Mexico (increased 180.87% from $1,632 to $4,582)
    • Russia (increased 125.30% from $2,645 to $ 5,958)
    • Singapore (increased  378.15% from $563 to $2,692)
    • Spain (increased 120.44% from $4,153 to $9,156)

The big gains in Spanish-speaking locales are no doubt thanks to our addition of Spanish localization this year.

While the ratio of US to non-US giving has inched closer to 50/50, we are still far from the 55% non-US / 45% US goal we set before the campaign began. Here’s where we stand:

Donations from outside the United States have grown a whopping 47% so far this year over 2013, with several more days of fundraising to go. Given all the positive gains in donations from outside the US, why didn’t the U.S.-to-non-U.S. ratio shift more? The answer lies in our testing strategy. We spent a good deal of time and resources testing and optimizing performance on the donation form and snippet. In some cases we improved conversion by as much as 4x (increasing from 5% conversion to nearly 20% conversion).

We optimized the French, German, Portuguese, and Spanish versions through testing, and there were significant performance gains there (more on this in a future blog post). However, because we have a relatively small team, and because roughly half of donations come from English-speaking locales, we focused more of our optimization efforts on the EN donation form and on the EN snippet. As a result of that work, the gains for EN were bigger.

In short: We achieved significant gains in localized giving and we should be very happy with the results. However, we saw even bigger gains in EN optimization, including the U.S.. Optimizing the form greatly increased donation completion rates and increased overall revenue for the campaign significantly.

We now know for certain we have a big opportunity to improve conversion rates for many locales, and we are only limited by our systems and resources.

Scaling up our optimization work across many countries and languages exponentially increases the complexity of our work, but we must find a way to do it. Our mission is global, and Mozilla is committed to reach its community of supporters where they are.

To see a country-by-country accounting of donor totals, see the “Donors by Country” chart on the main page of fundraising.mozilla.org and click on “Show Other”.