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Just like all the other activities, donations have shifted online, too. In fact, online giving increased by 23% in 2017, after growing 15% in 2016.
That being said, not every online fundraiser is a success. Some of them just don’t raise as much money as they planned, for one reason or another. There are certain mistakes that are common among these failed fundraisers.
In this article, we’ll tackle some of the most important things people should know when they build a fundraising website. Also, we’ll talk about the sustainable strategy that we advise our nonprofit organizations at GivingLoop to adopt.
What online fundraising involves
Raising money isn’t as easy as some might think. It requires a lot of planning and research. Only that the idea sounds good to you doesn’t guarantee its success. Although it’s for a good cause, fundraising still requires marketing.
It’s important to know how to reach the audience, the right audience. And this doesn’t only involve sending invitation emails to random strangers.
There are many mediums nonprofit organizations can advertise on, and email is just one of them. However, it’s not about being aggressive and persistent. Sometimes we have to play it smart. Having a good strategy is always the way to go.
So, what kind of strategy should we go for?
We at GivingLoop believe that the best way to go is with monthly donations. These recurring donations are much more efficient than one-time donations. Keep reading.
One-time vs Recurring Donations
Statistics say that monthly donors give 42% more annually than one-time donors. This subscription model is gaining more popularity among for-profit companies, such as Amazon and Netflix. Because people would much rather give a small amount of money each month than splurge it all at once. Since last year, monthly online donations have increased by 40%, while one-time increased by only 19%.
Besides that, monthly donations help fundraisers survive. Let’s say we start a fundraiser and invest a large sum of money in advertising it. And let’s say it reaches a lot of people. A lot of donations will come in all at once, but when the craze is over, the fundraiser will be at a huge downfall.
In order to avoid this, we use recurring donations, offering our donors the opportunity to subscribe to a monthly plan. The amount they want to donate each month is completely up to them. Because of this strategy, fundraisers can be at a constant growth instead of having extreme ups and downs. New subscribers will be coming in, and those who have already subscribed will keep donating every month.
We should always choose quality over quantity. Although a certain goal has to be reached, we must be patient. That way, we can have continuous donations even after the goal has been reached.
Some Other Useful Tips
As we said, if you want to fundraise for nonprofits, you have to play it smart. That includes planning and strategizing.
Here are a few more tips that you might find useful.
- Choosing the right time (aka. riding the waves). Fundraisers usually revolve around big current events or disasters, such as forest fires or some political statements. When the fundraiser is relevant, the chances of attracting a great number of people are high. That’s because current events are more real, and thus more emotional for us. And it’ll probably take less effort to reach people, being that most of them have already heard about the event in the news.
- Simplifying the donation process. Most people value their time highly. And that’s why they’re not going to spend more than a couple of minutes on donating to our fundraiser. Make the donation form fairly simple for them.
- Thanking the donors. Everyone likes to feel special. Thanking our donors after they donate shows that we care. Besides, they will feel good about themselves. And we do want them to feel good. That way, they will want to donate more often. We usually ask the donors for their email and thank them there.