How Alzheimer’s Soci­ety trans­formed it’s online giv­ing experience

Exhibited by
Addition by WPN Chameleon
May 17, 2017
Medium of Communication
Online Giving
Target Audience
Type of Charity
Country of Origin
Date of first appearance
December 2016

SOFII’s view

Getting a donor’s online experience right is a crucial challenge for modern charities. By comprehensively reviewing their digital presence and taking into account feedback from users of their website, Alzheimer’s Society revamped their product to deliver something user-friendly, substantially increasing their conversion rates and overall donations.

Summary / objectives

Alzheimer’s Society, the UK’s leading dementia support and research charity, wanted to optimise their online donation journeys to drive an increase in online giving. They also wished to improve the front-end user experience and the back-end admin functionality, thus enabling them to create campaign-specific donation journeys, optimised to maximise conversion rates and gift values.


Alzheimer’s Society had limited insight into the motivations of their online supporters. Working with digital product studio Addition (part of WPN Chameleon), the first step was to undertake several research activities to understand how users interact with the site, their motivations and their emotional attachments to the charity.

Once they had this insight, attention then turned to gaining a complete understanding of the organisation’s internal requirements including customer care, finance, digital, data and IT.

This information was then combined with Addition’s extensive experience of online donations to create working, device responsive HTML prototypes that were then user tested.

These prototypes tested different landing pages and multiple page flows vs a single page flow. After a number of versions were tested Alzheimer’s Society were happy to sign them off; the multiple page flow won out due to what users perceived to be increased trustworthiness.

Running alongside this project, the charity was undergoing a major rebrand that would impact on the donation product. It was agreed that Addition would design the product as an intermediate step between the current brand and the upcoming rebrand. This was a unique design challenge which, through continuous collaboration with the brand, digital and digital fundraising teams at the charity, was met successfully with minimum fuss.

After a successful design phase came the development phase with the designs passing over to the front- and back-end teams to implement HTML and CSS (cascading style sheets). The product was a custom implementation of Addition’s donation platform, with payment processing through Braintree. The product also integrated with the charity’s CRM system ProgressCRM, email system SmartFocus, and direct debit service Rapidata

Special characteristics

Utilising Braintree’s seamless integration, Alzheimer’s Society could give their supporters more choice including PayPal, credit card and, the recently launched, Apple Pay. The implementation also means that Addition can add in new payment options as required by Alzheimer’s Society, including the soon to be released Android Pay for the web.

The charity was part of the first wave of UK charities to implement Apple Pay in March 2017. This innovative technology will make single and regular donations much easier and quicker for supporters donating on Apple devices, including mobile, tablet and desktop.

Alzheimer’s Society are now able to channel supporters through tailored campaign routes which start with campaign specific landing pages meaning users are taken on a journey that is tailored rather than generic.

Optimised campaign landing pages have enabled Alzheimer’s Society to A/B test gift values, messaging and imagery to ensure they can optimise the journey to hopefully continually increase conversation rates and ultimately total donations.

Influence / impact

The organisational transformational fundraising drive and the new brand – launched in January 2017 – meant that Alzheimer’s Society would be sending more people to the site to donate. However, the old donation journeys were underperforming with a poor user experience, low conversion rates and a disappointing year-on-year increase in digital fundraising income. To avoid this they needed to provide the digital infrastructure to handle donations efficiently.


Since launching on 8 December 2016 Alzheimer’s Society have seen a 72 per cent increase in donations and the conversion rate has jumped from 22 per cent to 65 per cent, which is a huge increase.