Financial Management

Good techniques for boosting online donations

Nonprofit organizations that are seeking more donations should allow contributors to give money online. With the right fundraising software, donors can easily contribute with a click of the mouse. However, to get the most out of online fundraising, it’s imperative to have a site that is attractive, informative and easy to navigate. Here are some good techniques for boosting online donations:

Simplify website design
If a nonprofit organization’s website is cluttered, includes hard-to-read fonts and fails to provide clear instructions, donors will likely get frustrated and close the page. A nonprofit’s donation page should be as clean and simple as possible. It should provide clear directions on how to give money and be free of ads, banners and other items that can potentially distract donors. Nonprofit Hub recommends asking volunteers to provide an honest evaluation of the site. If these participants say a nonprofit’s website is difficult to navigate, leaders of the organization should work to make improvements.

“If a nonprofit’s website is cluttered, donors will likely get frustrated.

Use giving levels
Instead of letting people enter the number they want to donate, suggest a few amounts. Recommending amounts will simplify the process and may convince donors to give more than they originally planned. Nonprofit managers should look into how much most of their contributors give. If many of these supporters give less than $20, and the lowest suggestion is $50, potential donors may get discouraged. However, nonprofit leaders shouldn’t be afraid to push their sponsors to contribute more. For example, if the highest donations top out at $300, include a $350 or $400 level.

Include a captivating image
Nonprofits can increase online contributions by featuring a captivating image on the donation page. For example, if an organization is trying to raise money for hungry children in Africa, including an image of a native child eating food can warm donors’ hearts.

Persuade donors to give monthly
Although a one-time donation is helpful to a charitable organization, receiving a gift every month will benefit the cause even more. After donors complete a transaction, nonprofits shouldn’t hesitate to ask them to donate monthly. For example, organizations could create a message that says something like, “Thank you for your donation. Would you consider supporting our cause every month?” The Association of Fundraising Professionals says philanthropic organizations may have to wait a few years before there’s a significant amount of monthly donors, but these monthly supporters will eventually make a big difference.

Make websites mobile-friendly
With so many people using mobile devices to access the Internet, it’s wise for a nonprofit business to make its website mobile-friendly. If donors can easily view a nonprofit company’s donation page on their smartphone or tablet, they may be more likely to give money.