How technology has changed fundraising

22 April 2021

Technology has had a massive impact on everyone’s lives and this includes how donations are raised. Technology innovations have reshaped the way Fundraisers run campaigns with tools that constantly improve how they advertise, give and run events. 

New technology such as online giving forms has paved the way for cost-effective fundraising so that charities can put extra effort into their campaigns and services. By simplifying giving, online forms provide a better user experience and create a way for charities and donors to build better personal relationships encouraging regular donations.

Fundraising technology is constantly evolving, and we would like to share with you some of the biggest improvements and benefits technology has made so far.

The refinement of Online Fundraising

Online fundraising has changed drastically over the last few years, now your organisation can run campaigns through online giving forms, via text and through social media “A recent NFP statistic showed 68% of donors worldwide prefer to give online”.

You can tailor your giving forms to suit your campaigns, your donors to easily see donation options broken down and explained all within the giving form. Tailoring giving forms also makes it easy to include features like text to give and multi-giving. Your organisation is also able to customise and edit the giving form easily saving you an enormous amount of time and improving your donors’ experience. 

One of the biggest benefits that comes with online giving is cost-effectiveness, organisations no longer having to pay for endless mailouts with little reward. Giving forms may not be free, as providers generally ask for a flat rate or percentage of each donation, but they are far cheaper and more practical compared to old methods of fundraising.  

Another benefit of online giving is that you can provide the option for donors to contribute to processing fees. This option allows your organisation to take home 100% of the profits to put to good use. While not all your donors will select to contribute to the processing fees you will find most times your donors are happy to contribute knowing their full donation amount will now be put to good use. 

The introduction of online giving forms has also now made it easier for organisations to partner with charities such as the Payton Foundation. Giving forms allow a cost-effective way for partners to support multiple charities and keep track of the donations all in one place. Partnerships are a great way to not only help to increase awareness for many small charities but also funds as Donors can give in multiple places.

“We love how easy it is to create separate campaigns so you can customise the buttons to suit the fundraiser which also makes tracking the results easier.  And that you can embed the widget in your webpage so the donor is not taken to another website to enter their details – this helps them to trust the payment process.” – Jason Pater, Payton Foundation.

Improved User experience

Advancements in technology have offered a great opportunity for charities and NFP’s, to improve user interaction.

The multiple options that online giving forms present you with, allow your organisation to personalise the way the giving request is displayed, for a better and more audience-oriented user experience. 

Some of these personalisations include options like breaking down giving to explain what each amount allows your organisation to achieve, multiple giving and the inclusion of images to support the request.

One of the other great advancements when talking about user experience is one-time data capturing. Giving forms make it easy for your donors to fill in their details and payment methods that are then saved for later use. With this type of experience, your donors are also more likely to set up a recurring transaction as they know they are easily able to log back into their online form or app anytime to edit or change the transaction details. 

Make sure you are providing a good user experience, suitable for multiple devices. Creating a responsive format that works well on all devices will have an incredible impact on your user experience development. 

Providing a successful user experience will define how donors and potential donors feel when they are interacting with you online, and it will determine whether they stay and complete the donation, or leave and never come back.

Better accessibility for a broader audience

Technology has not just provided different options of giving but it has also offered better accessibility for a broader audience, donors now have options to give online, by app, or even by text. Providing these options makes giving accessible for everyone including those living with disabilities as now they can easily donate on their devices that are tailored to their needs. Making giving accessible also means your donors are more likely to give as they no longer have to attend events to get behind the cause. 

Advancements in technology have also allowed your donors to be able to share the donations they made on multiple social media platforms. This not only benefits your donors as they can easily share a cause close to them to their friends but also your organisation as it provides an opportunity to raise further awareness and donations.

Online giving has also provided your organisation the option to select whether donors can give anonymously. This allows your donors a level of privacy if they don’t want to receive praise for their donations or for your organisation to gain all their details. 

Multiple ways of payment

Changes in technology have also solved a timeless problem: Donors don’t always carry cash.  Technology has enabled multiple options for giving, such as online bank payments, Direct debit, Credit card,  PayPal, Apple Pay, and even Text donations via SMS. By providing multiple options your donors can pick the method that suits them better making them more likely to give.  

Donors can give multiple ways and to multiple charities, with many charities using the same online giving forms donors can use the same account to give. This makes it easier for your donors as they don’t have to continue adding their details and payment methods. It also makes it easier to set up recurring gifts for different organisations as they can manage all their transactions in one place. 

Online fundraising tools also make it simple to keep track of offline donations. Your organisation can use your fundraising tool to add and import offline transactions in order to send campaign receipts via email to your donors. Fundraising tools also allow you to keep track of your donations and manage your donors details all in one place. 

While people can give easily from the comfort of their own home that can also give quickly and easily at live events with options like Text to Give. Enabling this method allows your donors to easily give at live events as they can simply text an amount and keyword in order to donate, leaving them with more time to enjoy your event and support your cause.

Personalisation for a more authentic approach

Another huge benefit technology has provided to fundraisers is the chance to create a personal approach to fundraising. You can now personalise giving forms with photos, descriptions, and goals to explain your message and what you aim to achieve. This increases giving as it appeals to your donors emotions and makes them what to contribute to your set goal. You can also personalise emails and receipts to thank donors for their generosity. 

Online giving has allowed you to also build a relationship with your donors by easily being able to track regular givers. Creating a donor type that characterises how often and how much your donors give helps you to highlight your best donors so you know who to keep in contact with. 

Another great feature available on most giving forms is the subscription button, this option allows your donors to subscribe to newsletters and information from your organisation to keep them informed about current and new campaigns they can contribute to. 

While you can personalise what your donors see and receive from you, your donors can also add personalised notes with their donations. This allows them to write a thank-you note or provide a reason for why they donated.

Technology is constantly evolving and making fundraising practices more efficient. Fundraisers’ ability to adapt to this new technology not only has made their efforts more cost-effective but has also allowed them to reach their donors better and improve their user experience. 

Improvements in technology continue to enhance the experience for fundraisers and donors, this helps charities to increase their donations and continue doing all the amazing work they do. 

Check out Generous tour to find everything we offer to improve your fundraising.