You know the drill everyone: it’s time to rev those fundraising machines for the year-end! It’s the holiday season — people are in good spirits and wanting to give out of sheer generosity or to offset their annual taxes and the most savvy nonprofits stand to gain the most by capitalizing on online giving trends.
It’s never been easier to raise money online because people are getting more accustomed to giving that way: one silver lining of the pandemic that nonprofits a 32% increase in online revenue in 2020. The number of donors also increased that year by more than 11%, another sign of the power of online giving.
CauseVox’s recent Year-End Fundraising Fair featured several sessions centered on how best to maximize your year-end fundraising plans, including one session dedicated to highlighting “6 Ways to Raise More This Year-End” led by Candace Cody, CauseVox’s Manager of Content + Education, which you can watch below:
In-person events over the holidays are OUT. Unless they feature some sort of hybrid element to appeal to those who do not feel comfortable attending in-person events. Most nonprofits should instead consider their usual channels of direct mail, email campaigns and social media and experiment in some new areas like Livestreaming.
And whether you’re seeking to acquire more donors, increase gift size, or increase donor retention, just make sure your site is optimized and easy for potential donors to give you money as they’ve really come to expect an easy and seamless experience from anything they do online. (More on that later)
And of course, all good strategies start with a transparent goal that tugs at a donor’s heartstrings and tells them what kind of impact they can have on your work with a donation, so be sure that message is clear and compelling.
Here’s Six Ways You Can Raise More Online During Year-End 2021:
1) Drive Everyone To Give in One Place
Create a dedicated campaign page on your website to help streamline all of your fundraising activities during the end of year (remember that compelling goal we told you about earlier!). By simply telling your audience how much you’re looking to raise and why, you can track progress on your site and generate excitement from your followers who want to see you reach your goal and might even donate more to get you there.
If you’ve decided to try out using QR codes in any of your mail appeals (of course you have!), you’ll be able to easily send your donors to this campaign page and can track their participation. And don’t forget to change the link for your standard “donate” button on your homepage to redirect to the campaign page while it is launched. Just remember to change it back when the campaign is over.
And as we noted before, having an easy-to-use page is essential. CauseVox can help you get your year-end fundraising campaign site up and running in no time. Watch a 4-minute CauseVox demo here.
2) Focus on Storytelling and Impact
More than 56% of social media users cite compelling storytelling as a prime motivator in donating so you should capitalize on your best ambassadors to help raise money.
This tells us that your year-end fundraising appeal, and the story you tell with it, is essential to inspiring your supporters to give.
Who can you feature among your program participants? Can you use a strong and compelling quote from them about the impact your work has had on them along with their photo?
Be sure to tie your story to the impact a donation makes as well. The amount donors feel like they’re making an impact with their gift is a huge motivator for many donors. By using impact-driven donation tiers on your campaign page, you may be able to increase your donations by an average of $100. Here’s a look at how Fiver created impact-driven tiers for their year-end campaign.
Does your work lend itself to a community engagement campaign? If so, build a social media campaign that encourages followers to share their experiences whatever cause you’re working on, which helps generate many other stories and encourages sharing.
3) Optimize Your Donation Page To Maximize Year-End Gifts
On average, only one out of five people who get to a donation page goes through with a donation, which is a huge area for improvement. It’s time to streamline your donation page and less is more when you’re thinking about the number of form fields you’re including on your page.
Reducing the number from four to three fields increases conversion rates by 50%, according to Hubspot, because it’s easier for a busy donor to quickly make a donation.
Keeping donors on your branded site is also essential because they are 70% more likely to give again if they have experience with your site and keep getting sent back there. And whatever you’re doing, make sure your page is optimized for mobile devices and mobile wallets — more than 65% of traffic is on mobile and more people every year are making donations from a cell phone or tablet.
And don’t forget to thank your donors within two days of their donation, which makes them 400% more likely to give again — try automating this process by creating a personalized, automatic donation receipt.
A small investment in optimizing your donation form now will yield big results and help you raise more online this year-end.
4) Integrate Peer-to-Peer Fundraising
Peer-to-peer fundraising typically nets twice as much than crowdfunding because of your supporters’ networks. Find your ambassadors and make it easy for them to ask their networks to help support an organization they care about during the holiday season. Make it easy for them with a fundraising toolkit of suggested messages and templates for social media.
An added bonus is that this approach also helps build a whole new pool of potential donors if you engage them well when they donate.
Peer-to-peer provides a huge opportunity to attract new donors at the end of the year. For example, SOS Children’s Villages Illinois said that they received donations from 419 new donors through their peer-to-peer year-end campaign, which accounted for 75% of all their new donors in 2020.
5) Get A Matching Gift For Your Online Year-End Campaign
Do you have a board member, major donor, or corporate partner who wants to provide a matching gift?
Matching gifts have been proven to result in a 50% increase gift size. Why? People like to know that their donation will be even more impactful if it is matched so do what you can to line up some matching gifts throughout the year that can be leveraged.
By securing a matching gift, you’re setting yourself up to raise more online this year-end than ever before.
6) Use Pledge Now, Pay Later To Get More Large Gifts Committed
More than half of consumers have used “Buy Now, Pay Later” pledges — and 83% of donors who have used it have said they would give more if they could pay in installments, according to the Pledge Now, Pay Later Study.
With this approach, you’re deepening your relationships with your donors who are likely to stay connected to your organization, make larger gifts and become lifetime supporters. Our software makes this approach easy to use and you can read more about how you can get started with Pledge Now, Pay Later here.
When you incorporate Pledge Now, Pay Later, into your year-end fundraising plans, you’re going to increase gift size while also setting your nonprofit up for fundraising growth all year.
Raise More Online This Year-End With CauseVox
Are you ready to explore some new tactics in year-end fundraising? CauseVox makes it easy for you to set up and launch a digital fundraising campaign site and implement all of these best practices so you’re equipped to raise more this year-end.
Easily brand, customize, and start sharing your campaign in minutes.