Paid funnel investigation at Reforge
Unless you’re added to an existing company subscription, you must first apply to get access to Reforge. The application process is something we’ve had since the beginning of Reforge, meant to ensure that there’s a good fit between the customer and Reforge material and that customers are happy with their purchase. Word of mouth is an incredibly important part of what has helped Reforge grow to what it is today and critical to how we will be successful in the future. As Reforge has grown, we’ve expanded our acceptance criteria but we still have a robust process for reviewing applications even today.
Applicants are invited to pay to join the Reforge membership once we’ve accepted their application, and we look at the rates of how these people convert to paid status over time. We noticed a decrease in the rates at which people pay in April and dug into it to understand why it was happening.
The best companies use a mix of quant and qual to understand their business, and this doc is meant to document the process of how to quantitatively diagnose one of the most important funnels in our business.
It’s clear that April 2022 cohorts have started to perform worse than historical cohorts in terms of the accepted application → paid conversion rate. We don’t expect April 2022 numbers to perform as well as March 2022 because the seasonality of our business affects the payment conversion rate. Simply said, people want to participate in our programs and the deadline to participate is an effective incentive to get them to pay (programs started early in April). As soon as program enrollment closes, we always see payment conversion decrease.
When we compare against the same period in April 2021 (spring 2021 enrollment closed on 3/27/21 vs 3/28/22 for this spring), the cohorts in April aren’t performing as well. The weekly cohorts perform slightly worse in week 0, but a big gap develops starting one-week post-acceptance. We are seeing very few conversions past 14 days of being notified about their acceptance.
Note: these conversion %s have been altered from their true values