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Nonprofit Leaders 3min read

Why Your Nonprofit Donations Aren’t What They Could Be

Want to increase the amount of nonprofit donations supporters make to your organization? Of course you do. But you may be inadvertently hurting your own efforts. Let’s take a look at four reasons your nonprofit donations aren’t growing as much as they could.

You Rely On Outdated Methods

If you want to receive as many nonprofit donations as possible, you can’t simply rely on the same old methods of receiving gifts. Pledge cards, checks, and cash were at one time the best way to accept donations, but modern technology has quickly usurped their territory.

According to Blackbaud’s Charitable Giving Report:

Compared to 2013, online giving increased by 8.9% in 2014.

Small organizations saw online giving increase even more, with a 10.6% year-over-year increase.

Ttotal fundraising from online donations increased to 6.7%.

Now is the perfect time for your organization to review how you accept donations and upgrade to more modern processes. For example, online giving and mobile giving apps are great assets that can enhance your organization’s fundraising potential.

Donors Don’t Know Where Nonprofit Donations Go

Supporters like to know how their donations will specifically help your cause. To convince them to give, be transparent. Give updates on how you are spending the money you have received. Show the faces who are being helped by your efforts.

Donors are more likely to give — and make more donations in the future — if they see how far their nonprofit donations will go. Keep them posted on the good your organization is doing, and you will see the results during your next found of fundraising.

You Don’t Reach Donors Where They Are

How easy is it for supporters to give to your cause? Do they have to be currently attending a fundraising event? Will they have to take home a pledge card and hopefully remember to fill it out and mail it back in?

If donors aren’t able to give to your organization easily from wherever they are, you are missing a great opportunity. Using modern technology like mobile giving apps, supporters can send nonprofit donations from anywhere, at any time. Even if they can’t make it to your next fundraising event, they can still make a donation.

You Don’t Say Please and Thank You

Politeness is not just good advice for young children. It can also come in handy with increasing nonprofit donations.

When was the last time your organization requested money from its supporters? Do you ever ask at all? When you do ask, does it sound more like a demand than a polite request? Maybe your requests for nonprofit donations aren’t the issue. Perhaps the problem is that you don’t thank your donors for helping support your organization.

In her book Donor Centered FundraisingPenelope Burk shared results of a study that backs up the importance of thanking donors:

  • When making future donations, supporters who received a thank you call gave 39 percent more than those who did not receive a call.
  • After 14 months, those called were giving 42 percent more.

Always say please and thank you. Ask your biggest supporters to donate to your cause, and when they do, show your appreciation. Send them a thank you note in the mail, or give them a personal phone call. This will go a long way in building strong, long-lasting relationships with your donors.

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About the Author

Allison has a passion for charitable giving and believes that small acts of kindness can make the world a better place. She uses her web content and social media expertise to guide churches and nonprofits through the mobile fundraising process.

Allison Weaver