eCommerce for Nonprofits: Online Product Sales to Fight Cancer


Tap Cancer Out is a jiu-jitsu based nonprofit raising awareness and funds for cancer-fighting organizations on behalf of the jiu-jitsu community. As a sports-based nonprofit, they have a top-quality line of merchandise that is sold onsite at charity tournaments and in their online store.

We were tasked with the challenge of scaling up Tap Cancer Out’s eCommerce operation. The goal was to develop ROI-positive eCommerce marketing campaigns to generate more revenue for Tap Cancer Out. We leveraged Search, Facebook Advertising, and email campaigning to effectively drive store purchases using defined custom remarketing audiences. Along with featured campaigns based on new product rollouts and timely promotional discounts, we introduced low-cost dynamic product remarketing campaigns to store visitors to bring them to the point of purchase.

The Outcome

The right strategy is critical, but so are the tools to back them up. By leveraging a multi-platform approach connected by integrations across systems (social, search, email, and online store), we were able to interact with supporters and store customers when most engaged. The results were tangible, more than doubling the number of orders placed in a year. The impact was also tangible – more dollars raised towards the fight against cancer.


YoY increase in total sales


YoY increase in total orders


YoY increase in store visits

Multi-Touchpoint Campaigns

Utilizing a combination of search advertising, paid social advertising, and email, we sought to attract users looking for jiu-jitsu merchandise. By starting with awareness messaging on search, we drove an already interested audience to a landing page designed for lead capture with a 10% store discount offer. Thus, we were able to capture email addresses to then nurture supporters in a more 1:1 environment. Any landing page and store visitors who did not make a purchase were added into a remarketing audience.

Concurrently, running product ads on Facebook and Instagram, we sent a qualified audience directly to the online store with a purchase objective. Our growing remarketing audiences were then served follow-up advertisements using dynamic messaging and imagery based on the products they had already viewed, making them more likely to purchase.

Combining a long-term communications flow via multiple platforms and nurturing via email, we saw an increase in the likelihood of turning TCO’s current supporters and broader audience into store customers.

Testing Great Ideas

We use data to inform our strategy – always testing our assumptions before investing our client’s resources. Since eCommerce marketing was relatively new to Tap Cancer Out and we had a wealth of platforms, ad formats, and great content to test, we tested many different approaches to see what resonated best with Tap Cancer Out’s audience. Along with varied messaging strings and ad placements, we also tested different types of promotional campaigns – new merchandise drops, store discounts, product bundles, and other incentives to turn an audience of supporters into store customers.

Through our work, we developed an approach that spoke to potential customers at every stage of the buyer’s journey – reaching them with engaging content, and retargeting any non-converting store visitors with abandoned cart messaging to bring them back to the store website. eCommerce also proved to be an effective lead generation strategy with the initial store discount offer in exchange for an email address.

Track Everything

Data is at the heart of what we do, and having sophisticated tracking is of utmost importance – especially when running multi-channel advertising campaigns. Tracking allows us to optimize our campaigns for the maximum return on investment, reaching supporters with the right message at the right time.

Through our work, we were able to identify top-performing products (highest grossing and most cost-effective), the best messaging to resonate with TCO’s audiences, the most successful ad formats and content types for eCommerce advertising, and the most cost-effective and engaged audience segments across all platforms. This allowed us to provide recommendations on new product priorities based on cost-effectiveness and level of audience interest.

Thanks to lots of testing (and lots of data!), we have laid a solid foundation to continue to scale Tap Cancer Out’s eCommerce sales.

Ready to drive growth and impact through digital strategies?

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