After six years of consistent and considerable growth, the importance of online and mobile giving has now been firmly established. Yet for many churches and charitable organizations, the thought of introducing digital giving to their supporters is more than a little intimidating.
But it doesn’t need to be! Yes, it requires a bit of research and a bit of legwork, but a successful digital giving solution really comes down to getting three basic things right. Focus on the three things below, and you’ll be an e-giving expert in no time at all!
1) The Right Platform
I could write an entire series of posts on this point alone. For our purposes today, lets just focus on the three essentials that any self-respecting online giving platform will include.
Scheduled giving: Online giving’s ability to transform one-time givers into consistent monthly “partners” can completely transform your organization’s finances. Your platform should make recurring giving a snap. The less time and fewer clicks required, the better!
Mobile integration: Mobile Internet usage is expected to overtake desktop usage by the end of this year. Your online giving solution needs to be a mobile giving solution as well. Giving apps, mobile optimized forms, text giving, something really cool we haven’t even heard of yet. It doesn’t have to be one thing, just make sure you’ve got something.
Customization / Flexibility: How seamless does your platform integrate with your website? Does it allow you to easily create multiple giving campaigns? Can the reports be customized to your liking? Can givers easily control and modify their giving activity? Your fundraising needs are always changing and your platform should be able to change with them.
2) The Right Integration
So you’ve identified a giving provider uniquely suited to serve the needs of your organization. That’s great! Where is it? If I’ve been on your website for more than 10 seconds and am still not sure where the giving page is, you’ve already lost me.
Be proud of your giving page! Don’t hide the link under a bushel! (Or on the footer. Or on an image carousel. Or on a list of 15 other links.) Get the “Donate” button on your homepage. Get it above the fold. It doesn’t need to be the first thing I see when I visit your website, but it should be easy to find when I need it.
But integration doesn’t end there. What happens after I click the button? Am I transported away from your site to an impersonal, unbranded landing page? Does this landing page look like it was built in the late-90s? Once again, you’ve lost me. Get the giving form embedded onto your site! Not only will this provide a more seamless experience for your givers, studies have shown that branded giving pages lead to higher gifts.
3) The Right Communication
Having completed Steps #1 and #2, I have seen far too many organizations take the “Field of Dreams” approach with their online giving: “If we build it, they will come.” Unfortunately, what works for mysterious Iowa baseball fields doesn’t typically work for online giving pages. Having digital giving options is not enough. You need to tell your supporters about them! And then you need to tell them again. And again. And again.
It’s not about nagging people into giving. It’s about providing frequent reminders about the various ways people can support your mission. As a fundraiser it’s your job to ensure that your givers know exactly where and how they can give back to your organization whenever the opportunity presents itself.
How you communicate with your supporters is entirely up to you. Maybe it’s with regular email appeals. Maybe it’s with social media updates and a banner on your homepage. Maybe it’s a verbal reminder at your next event. Maybe it’s all of the above! You know which avenues will work best for your organization, but – as we said with mobile giving – just make sure you’re doing something!
CLICK HERE to learn more about Mogiv’s unique approach to online and mobile giving.