Heifer International

Lifting 40 million families out of poverty

For more than 70 years, Heifer International has worked to better our world and to end global hunger and poverty, but their mission is far from complete.

After Lifeblue’s connection to Heifer in 2012, we first developed a digital platform that made it easier for donors to see and share first-person stories of the impact their gifts made.

In the years since, we’ve delivered a deep and broad range of business solutions – and we’re proud to have contributed to programs that have lifted more than 10.75 million people out of poverty in the years we’ve worked together.

Removing friction points

Heifer’s fund-raising efforts through its website had been effective, but each program was tied to its own technical platform. For example, donors who wanted to buy a gift from the online catalog and also set up a monthly donation found themselves fighting through several separate user experiences just to support the cause.

The impact we had:

  • A shopping cart that made it possible for donors to make any type of donation and buy physical gifts in an elegant, simplified checkout experience.
  • A more secure checkout experience, incorporating SSL and a trustworthy shopping experience.

Minding the store

Donor research showed that some people wanted tangible items to go with their financial gifts, and our work on the unified cart made it possible for Heifer to cross-promote all products. An analysis of the items in the online shop showed that while the products carried the Heifer logo, not all of them embodied the Heifer mission.

We worked with Heifer to create a merchandising strategy and pricing model that aligned the online shopping experience with the charity’s broader mission and voice.

The impact we had

  • Heifer Marketplace was repositioned and renamed, giving a nod to how goods are bought and sold in the villages that Heifer helps -- and giving donors a clearer picture of their gifts’ impact.
  • We allowed a way for Heifer to create partnerships with farmers and artisans by selling their products and helping them earn a living wage.
  • We helped Heifer analyze pricing models that would lead to an increase in retail revenue without compromising donations. In fact, Heifer saw not only a higher average value per order, but an increase in donation amounts as well.
  • In the first two months after we relaunched the Heifer Marketplace online, total sales were up 405 percent over the total from the entire previous year.

Introducing gift cards

With the boost in popularity of more philanthropic gifts, especially amongst millennials, Heifer needed a way to speak to both the gift givers and receivers.

Donors wanted a way to let the gift card recipients choose the type of gift to be passed to the family in need. For instance, choosing a cause that was more aligned to women’s empowerment formed a deeper connection to the recipient.

The impact we had

  • By giving gift honorees the opportunity to select the type of donation, long-term engagement with Heifer was increased, making it a more meaningful experience.
  • The first holiday season they were offered, gift cards landed in the top 10 of products sold.

Spreading the news, deepening the impact

As Heifer continues its work, taking its programs into new villages and new regions of the world, we aim to help them reach new potential donors: next-generation philanthropists who identify with the values and the mission that have inspired us so much over the last six years. 

It’s our goal to help Heifer attract new donors through content marketing strategies that appeal to those that support the philosophy of delivering “a hand up, not a handout” so that those in need become not just self-sufficient, but also able to help their neighbors. 

That model – called “passing on the gift” – is the hallmark of Heifer’s work, the result of shared knowledge and of small actions that add up to a large impact.

Thanks in no small part to our relationship with Heifer, we believe it's a hallmark of our work, too.


  • 405% increase in marketplace sales over the total from the entire previous year
Woman working over a wood-burning stove.

Help us lift families out of poverty

Donate to Heifer international