#SciFund Crowdfunding Goals and Success

Recently, I was asked some questions about Goals for #SciFund participants that I hadn’t investigated since round 1. Namely, what’s do people usually ask for? Which of course led me in a few directions.

First, what do folk ask for?

The mean ask is $3356.33 with the median at $2500 over all three rounds. Or, for a round-by-round breakdown

Round Mean.Goal Median.Goal
1 4584.28 3500.00
2 2175.90 2000.00
3 3308.50 2500.00

So, the goal has is kind of bouncing around a bit. To see that visually:

Of course, this got me thinking – has the relationship between goal and success (weak in R1) ever really meant anything? Is it changing? So, I ran a quickie analysis…In general, it appears that larger and larger projects are hitting their 100% goal over time.

The analysis agrees – looking at how the observed log(Goal) was predicted by whether or not a project was funded at 100% and what round it was in, there’s an interaction between funded status and round. Basically, the analysis says the same thing as the plot – as we’ve progressed, bigger and bigger projects are hitting 100%!

Sum Sq Df F value Pr(≤F)
Fully.funded. 5.98 1 13.56 0.0004
Round 5.39 2 6.11 0.0030
Fully.funded.:Round 3.52 2 3.99 0.0212
Residuals 48.93 111


Estimate Std. Error t value Pr(≤|t|)
(Intercept) 8.3438 0.1092 76.44 0.0000
Fully.funded.Yes -1.0335 0.2366 -4.37 0.0000
Round2 -0.6946 0.1763 -3.94 0.0001
Round3 -0.3856 0.2280 -1.69 0.0937
Fully.funded.Yes:Round2 0.7463 0.3046 2.45 0.0159
Fully.funded.Yes:Round3 0.9003 0.3690 2.44 0.0163

Interesting, no?

gist of code to generate the above

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  1. Nice analysis, Jarrett!

    I’m curious whether conversion rates have also crept upward as SciFund has progressed? Here I define conversion rate simply as donors / pageviews, and there are reasonable proxies for pageviews if Google Analytics data is missing.

    At Microryza, the overall conversion rate across projects is fairly consistently in the 2-3% range, with temporary spikes (doubling even) in conversion rate precipitated by press/blogosphere/Twitter KOL mentions. Notwithstanding media coverage, conversion rates are higher at the beginning and end of campaigns. I would expect those features to be stable across rounds, but perhaps overall conversion rates are creeping up as accumulated knowledge of crowdfunding and best practices emerge.

    1. Yep – 2.06% in R1, 3.51% in R2, and 3.11% in R3. Lots of spread in the numbers there, though. Intriguingly, no relationship with total amount raised (p>0.18). Might be neat to dig into further.