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Helping you Get and Keep More Patrons, Part 1

We’re excited to kick off a series of product improvements over the next several months with two goals in mind: helping you get more patrons, and making sure the patrons you have are happy and sticking with your membership.

To tee up this project, we’ve spent the past few months talking to patrons and creators, and analyzing data, to give us some clues about where we can have the most impact. And in the process, we’ve uncovered some things that creators can do to reach those goals, and some areas where Patreon can help.

In this blog series, we’ll share our learnings and plans, starting with the things Patreon will work on to help you get and keep more happy patrons.

Your creator page

We sat down with potential patrons to get their feedback on the current creator page and tested a few concepts, and here’s what we’ve learned: the page as we’ve designed it is hard to read and understand, especially on mobile. The About section is too long in most cases. The tiers are pushed way over to the side, and you have to scroll a lot to read all of them and understand what’s being offered. Also, the page is trying to do too many jobs. It’s trying to explain to potential patrons what membership is, and what you as the creator are offering. And it’s trying to be the home where you deliver posts and benefits to those that are already patrons.

What if we tried something different — a public page for non patrons, and a separate page for patrons only?

Based on our research, we think we can help you get more patrons by tailoring the page for non-patrons to be more streamlined and readable, especially on mobile devices. So that’s what we are going to work on in the next couple months.

But rather than just rolling out a whole new design at once, we’re going to start slowly, with gradual changes that we can test before moving forward. Starting this month, if you're logged out of your account you may notice that your page looks a bit different, because we’re trying some small tweaks that will only appear to non-patrons.

For example, we’d like to test a new placement for tiers that makes them easier to see, as well as an expandable About section, so people aren’t overwhelmed by too much text. These changes will only be visible to a fraction of the non-patrons that visit your page, which allows us to measure the impact of the changes, and ensures that they actually work to grow your business. Once we see that something is working, we’ll roll it out to everyone, and we’ll keep you informed along the way.

Finding and enjoying benefits

Another thing we learned is that many patrons have a hard time finding the benefits they signed up for. For instance, new patrons often have to scroll through dozens of posts before finding the exclusive content they’re looking for. We discovered that some patrons were having trouble accessing their creators’ Discord communities, logging in to Patreon, and retrieving their membership benefits, in general. We also learned from analyzing data that if a patron is going to leave, they’re probably going to leave in their first month.

Based on these findings, we plan to improve the post-pledge experience, so it feels like patrons have unlocked a world of benefits that are easy to find and to access. We’ll test Google Single Sign-on to improve login issues. And we’ll test different approaches to helping patrons discover posts they’ll love.

We are taking special care to make sure we don’t change anything that will confuse your current patrons. We want to make finding things easier and more obvious, without disrupting what patrons are used to. Our goal is to improve patron retention (with a special focus on that first month following a pledge to a creator).

Sharing Learnings

As this work progresses, we’ll share what we learn with you through this blog series, through email, and in the Patreon Community forum. We’ve already started the conversation in the forum where we’ve asked for feedback on the creator page and shared some future design ideas. If you’re not in the forum, apply here and you'll be emailed a link to join. If at any time you have questions about changes you’re seeing on your Patreon page, you can send us a note here.

We hope you’re as excited as we are to make Patreon better for you and your patrons.

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