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ProPublica Sees 14-Point Conversion Rate Increase in 2 Months Using PayPal On Classy Pay

The Mission

Expose abuses of power and betrayals of public trust as an independent nonprofit newsroom.

Results Between November and December 2021:

14.2 PT

YoY Conversion Increase


raised with PayPal


transactions with PayPal


average donation

Supporting an Annual Campaign Launch

ProPublica knew that a modern, mobile giving experience was critical in retaining their 35,000 donors. In 2017, they adopted Classy as their payment processor to make it a reality. Classy Pay added PayPal in October of 2021, and ProPublica activated it before the busy giving season. Set up was under two hours and in just two months they had 2,744 transactions and a 14-point conversion rate increase through the PayPal button.

I can’t think of a larger hurdle to giving than an outdated donation form. Classy Pay’s excellent mobile UX paired with their automatic card updater has made a powerful impact on our recurring giving program, and I’m so grateful to them.

Jill Shepherd

Director of Membership at ProPublica

Donor Demand Inspires More Payment Flexibility

If you would just offer PayPal, I would give.

ProPublica Donors

Previous to 2021, ProPublica saw the positive impact of Classy Pay’s digital wallet options for their donors. However, they still heard from their donors about the desire to add PayPal to that list of options. ProPublica originally added PayPal to their donation pages with a workaround footer. Because of that, they lost visibility into which donors used it and the experience they had. ProPublica knew donors wanted PayPal but eagerly awaited a more seamless way to use it with Classy. As soon as Classy announced PayPal in November 2021, ProPublica traded their temporary solution for a complete Classy Pay experience.

Now, the PayPal button comes with the same fraud protection, mobile-first experiences, card updating, seamless payouts, and in-depth campaign attribution analytics as the rest of their payment options through Classy Pay. In addition to their significant conversion rate increase, their recurring giving program added 3,457 members between 2020 and 2021. This resulted in $56,856 more raised and a predictable income stream to lean on in the year to come.

I raised 20% more this year with PayPal vs. last year without. Why wouldn’t you want to activate it?

Jill Shepherd

Director of Membership at ProPublica

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