Nonprofits are wonderful entities in our world that make a huge difference in our neighborhoods and culture at large. They work tirelessly to meet the needs of people and even creatures that cannot meet those needs themselves. These organizations are a part of the backbone of our society as they do their work in the name of the greater good.
At their core, nonprofits operate financially how their name denotes: they are not for profit. They aren’t selling products to fill their pockets. On the contrary, they are constantly pouring out their resources toward their cause.
So, where do those poured-out funds even come from? They derive from the nonprofit’s donors!
Nonprofit donors are the people who believe in the organization’s cause so much that they are willing to back them up with their financial resources. They are sold out to the vision of the food shelter, church, or foundation and want to further their mission.
Donors are not just obtained overnight. There is a relationship between the nonprofit and the donor built through trust, vision, and mission. While many people in the world are extremely charitable, getting them to commit financially to your particular vision is not the easiest task.
But let’s say you already have great relationships with several incredible donors, but you want to expand your reach to those who may not be fully committed donors yet. In comes the wonderful world of the Internet!
With our digital era comes the ability for donors to shift the ways they reach out to potential donors and receive their donations. Before, many nonprofits were limited to in-person donor events where they have a nice meal, pitch their vision, then do a cattle call for donations. In reality, the people who attend those events are by and large already committed to the cause. The Internet has made it possible for nonprofits to reach those who are outside the existing donor circle.
How can you effectively leverage your website donation page to convert spectators to donors? Here are a few tips to spruce up your website donation or giving page!
1. Make it secure
This is the most important hurdle to leap when you set up an online donation page. Unfortunately, some people would rather just give “the old-fashioned way” because they don’t trust the security of entering their credit card information online.
The best way to mitigate this concern is by encrypting your donation page with a Secure Sockets Layer (also known as the “s” in https://). This Internet protocol ensures the safe transfer of private information (e.g., your credit card information) between the user and the website.
This will prevent donors’ sensitive information from being used/accessed by anyone other than your organization.
2. Keep it simple and clear
A roadblock to receiving donations online is just making it way too complicated for potential donors to give. Instead, you should have a very clear donation button that stands out from the rest of your navigation menu items. Once that button is clicked, the donation page should be short and simple.
It may be wise to add in a small blurb about the importance and value of the donors’ contribution, but don’t litter the page with it. That is what the rest of your website is for.
Keep the process easy by having a basic form with fields for the donor name, address, email, payment information, and an optional field to set up recurring payments (which we will talk about in the next point).
3. Include a short but compelling “Why.”
Your mission has gotten your potential donor to this page, and a compelling “why” can help inspire them to click that donate button! But not every visitor to your donation page is determined to give today, and even if they are, they may be thinking about giving to a variety of organizations.
Having a short and compelling reason for giving today will help motivate your donors to give, so you can grow your organization and increase your impact!
4. List suggested giving amounts
Don’t let analysis paralysis stop your donors from deciding on how much to give. Present them with options.
By simply adding the element of choice with 3-5 giving options, you can boost engagement and online fundraising goals by taking some of the work – and choice – out of the equation for your donors. Using suggested donation amounts makes it even easier for potential donors to click through quickly and contribute to your mission with ease.
5. Give an option for creating a donor account
Depending on the capabilities of your website, consider offering an option to create a donor account upon making their initial donation. This will make things easier in the long run for the donor to view their past donations, set up recurring payments, and access any other information you want to provide.
Speaking of recurring giving, always give an option for that. This will allow your donors to automatically give an amount of their choosing each month without having to go back to the initial donor page. Recurring donations provide a steady stream of support for the nonprofit. It is a fantastic way to manage charitable giving without the concern of missing a payment. Donors can indicate the frequency, select the payment method, and their gift continues to give over time.
6. Make sure it’s mobile-friendly
More and more people are using their mobile devices to access the Internet. When it comes to reaching potential donors, you need to ensure you can reach them on their smartphones! Make sure that the donation page is mobile-friendly and can offer the same security, simplicity, and clarity that your desktop site offers. It’s that simple!
7. Say thanks!
Often when you make an online purchase, you receive a short follow-up email from the company you bought something from. This is usually a pretty generic email that is automatically forwarded to you. If large for-profit corporations express a sense of thanks to their customers, you surely should be doing the same with your donors!
Instead of opting for an automatic email reply, you can instead send out a personalized email or even a thank you letter in the mail. While this doesn’t directly correlate to your actual donation page, it is a beneficial addition to help establish a growing relationship with your donors.
Growing your donorship community is a critical aspect of running a successful nonprofit organization. Utilizing your organization’s website is one of the best ways to make it easy for current and potential donors to contribute to get to know you better and contribute to your cause.
Remember to make your donation page secure, simple, intuitive, mobile-friendly, and always thank donors for their support!
Need some help rebuilding or creating your nonprofit organization’s donation page? Our web team is here to help you out!
We want to help those who do good do more. Establishing a secure, responsive, and concise donation page will help you seamlessly receive support so you can focus on the mission at hand. Contact us today for more information!
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