Home STI test kit orders hit 3,000 and return rate rises to 68%

Nerding out with teh numberz

Nerding out with teh numberz

OK, you’ve got the picture from past blog posts – SH:24 takes its data seriously. 

Whilst nothing beats hearing from our service users on how we could further develop the service and make improvements, numbers play an important part in our story.

Since we launched the service in March 3,000 people (62% women, 38% men) have ordered an STI test from SH:24 – this is on average 600 orders a month, and achieving what we have been commissioned to deliver by Lambeth and Southwark councils. Alongside encouraging feedback such as…

…this is great news. It is a strong indicator that people want and like to use the service, and that taking a design-led approach that puts users at the heart of development is paying-off. SH:24 also has a 7% diagnostic rate – helping to prevent further infection of STIs and improve the sexual health of the local population.

Most encouragingly SH:24’s return rate has increased to 68%, significantly higher than other online testing services. Again this reflects the iterative approach taken to develop the service – that not only looked at digital development, but all aspects of creating the service, including ‘offline’ elements such as test kit instructions and packaging. 

From very early on what users were telling us led us to believe that the major ‘cliff-edge’ in the service wouldn’t be completing the online order form and risk assessment (vindicated by 95% of users completing the order), but by completing the blood test at home. This has been at the forefront of our minds through development and since launching the service. We’ve made some improvements that have made a real difference – new lancets, top-tips for the blood test kit, a new instructional video and a reminder text message for users who haven’t returned their kit at 16 days.

We also feel like we finally might be cracking the search engine algorithms – with 25% of people finding SH:24 through organic search. Support from partners through signposting our service from their websites has made a big difference (special thanks to Southwark Council, Young Lambeth, Clapham Park Group GP Surgery and Herne Hill Group Practice to name a few).

With nearly 60,000 page views of our website – from across the county (and internationally), we're confident we have a product that not only has the potential to increase access to sexual health services in Lambeth and Southwark, but well beyond.