Six months ago, no one could have predicted where we’d be today. While the landscape for creative people is changing before our eyes, we are working hard to keep evolving and improving Patreon. That way, no matter where the world leads us, you can better engage with your community and continue to grow your creative business.
Here’s a recap of what we’ve been up to over the past six months, and also, what’s coming on the horizon for Patreon.
Last September, we set out on a mission to help you get and keep more patrons. We began by zeroing in on the fan to patron experience, so we could better understand what we could build to have the biggest impact on the growth of your membership.
That research led us to an important insight: as it turns out, fans checking out your Patreon page for the first time have different needs and questions than existing patrons do. This led us to our next question — if fans and patrons have different needs, why do they have nearly identical experiences when they visit your creator page?
So, we created a separate landing page for fans who aren’t yet patrons that has a super clear display of tiers and benefits. Then, we ran a series of tests to see which version performed best, and rolled out the winning version to all creators. With the changes we made to your landing page, on average 20% more fans are choosing to become patrons, which means less work for you to convert your fans into patrons. Since making these changes, we’ve continued to monitor average pledge size and have found no decrease in the pledge amount creators are receiving from patrons.
While that period of rapid change to your landing page is cooling down, Patreon is forever on the lookout for ways to help you turn more fans into patrons. Early tests show this new design with a list of benefit icons would lead to even more fans becoming patrons. Here’s an early take on how that could look:
Our research and data tell us that a patron’s first moments of membership are critical to keeping them around for the long haul. That moment of clicking “pledge” needs to be as impactful as possible, instantly whisking your new patrons into all the hard work you’ve put into making your membership feel special.
So we created a brand new welcome experience and home for all things benefits, giving fans an easy entry into the world they just uncovered by becoming your patron. And, if they can’t find something in their benefits, we also added a search box, so your patrons can search and filter through posts to find exactly what they need.
In addition to those updates, you can now curate these critical first moments yourself by pinning a post for new patrons to see on your Patreon page, or by crafting welcome notes specifically for the tier they choose.
Not only are all of these updates a much better experience for new patrons, on average, seven days into these changes, we saw an 8 percent drop in patrons cancelling their pledges to creators.
In January, we announced that we’re taking Patreon global. While we’ve always been passionate about our international creators and patrons, we’re now making the support of the global creative community a central part of our mission.
Here are some of our first steps toward that goal:
- We opened up a home base for creator outreach in Berlin and built a team to help launch thousands of creators in their local currency.
- We started support for multiple currencies, so now, creators can launch with their choice of GBP, Euro, or USD
- We launched global shipping for Merch for Membership. Since then, we’ve shipped exclusive merch on behalf of creators to patrons in over 70 countries.
The same way that a great singer can take a classic standard and put a fresh spin on it, we want you to be able to put a unique spin on your membership, so you can build memorable connections with your biggest fans and engage your community for years to come. And it shouldn’t be a full-time job to manage.
With that in mind, here’s what we’ll be working on over the coming months. Think of Patreon as your backing band, providing you a rock solid foundation to make something unique and memorable for your patrons.
- Improved Messaging. We’ll be improving Patreon’s Messaging feature to make it easier for you to quickly connect with patrons by searching messages, viewing message history, and sending group messages. Our goal is to make your Patreon inbox a more vital channel for running your membership efficiently and effectively.
- More data on patrons. We’ll be improving your Patreon analytic tools, which help you understand patron lifetime value, anniversaries, and benefit delivery timelines. We want to ensure that patron management is seamless, intuitive, and exciting — it should feel fun and less like a chore.
- Merch for everyone. Currently, Merch for Membership is only available to a limited group of creators. But soon, it will be available to everyone, so all creators can get high-quality merch to their fans without having to worry about manufacturing, shipping, or tracking.
- Currency choice. Patrons will be able to pay in their local currency (Euro, GBP, Dollars), and creators who want to change their payout currency to GBP or Euros will be able to do so in the coming months. The bottom line is that more choice means more money for creators.
We can’t wait to share more details soon on our blog and community forum!