Jan 19, 2015
Does your nonprofit accept online donations? If it does you're already one step ahead of the pack as long as you make online giving quick and easy for your donors and ensure their financial data is secure through certified payment processing. However, launching an online fundraising campaign, making the ask and seamlessly collecting the funds is easier said than done. With that said, let's take a look at the seven keys to running a successful online fundraiser:
1. Test, test and test
You must always be willing to experiment with every strategy when making your nonprofit's ask online. While your donors believe in your mission, not all of them can afford to give the same amount. Include a number of different ask amounts from $10 and up and give contributors the ability to write in their own amount if they wish to. You don't want to overwhelm your donors with options, but you do want to encourage everyone from small, one-time givers to those that donate in the five figures.
Besides experimenting with different ask amounts, use a distinctive voice in each email you send out requesting people to give to your nonprofit. Add some variety and shake things up by using a diverse set of email addresses so potential donors know your asks aren't coming from a robot.
2. Your story matters
A personalized approach is best when trying to raise money for your organization. You must remind your patrons about why you started your nonprofit, what purpose it serves and what specifically donations will go toward. How will donors help you make a difference? They need to know via a compelling story.
3. Track the donations
The work doesn't stop once the money starts coming in. Keep abreast of where these donations come from to estimate which of your fundraising tactics are working and which ones need tweaking.
4. Easier giving through your website
Streamline the giving process by embedding an online donation form on your website. By making donating easy and effortless, donors will more than likely give to your cause without a second thought. If visitors to your organization's website need to click around to find the donation page or have to fill out a lot of information, they'll be less apt to give. Nonprofits with their own branded donation pages receive six times as many donations as those that do not have one.
5. Be more mobile
Make your website and all its pages, including the donation forms, mobile friendly. As more people use smartphones and tablets to surf the Internet, you might lose patrons if they can't properly view your website on their devices.
6. Add a donate button
A good website must be intuitive and user friendly. Guide your visitors' eyes and make the giving process even easier for them by including a donate button on each page of your website.
7. Visualize your goals
Show the public the progress you make along the way through graph charts or a thermometer so donors can see how they're making a difference.