Non profits rely heavily on donations to survive and to accomplish their mission. If you’re a nonprofit or church either struggling to generate donations or looking for non profit donation tips, this article’s for you!
Before we dive into growing donor retention, let’s go over some non profit donation basics.
2 Primary Types Of Non Profit Donations
Cash donations and in-kind donations (non-cash) are the two main forms of donations. Cash donations are self-explanatory; they’re donations your non profit receives that are in a form of cash, a check, or a credit card transaction.
In-kind donations are donations typically in the form of goods or services.
If you’re trying to increase how often people donate, start by considering a couple things:
1) The different ways people give.
2) And how often they currently give.
We live in a fast-paced world. If you’re trying to raise donations for your non profit, it’s important to make donating as easy as possible. People should be able to give to your organization with a click of a button. Online donation forms are a must for your non profit. Donation widgets that have a “Donate Now” button is a plus.
A great non profit donation form should be:
- Simple and look good
- Easily accessible
- Mobile friendly
- Able to share the purpose (where the money is going) of the donation form (non profit transparency is key)
- Able to have the option to give recurring donations (and customizable amounts)
Non Profit Donations Are About Relationships
Building relationships not only increase your chances of generating more donations, but it gives your organization opportunities to engage donors and share your mission and vision. Make it a habit to connect and engage before sending emails and forms asking for them to donate.
Remember, when trying to grow donor retention, it’s crucial to keep relationships at the forefront. So, creating an online donation form doesn’t just have to be a way for your organization to collect money. It can be a great way to market and share your non profit’s mission, vision, and overall purpose for your donations.
Another thing to consider when growing your donation base is the importance of recurring donations. Recurring donations not only help build your donation base, but it also creates the opportunity to regularly connect with your donors.
Often times you’re working past the typical 5 p.m. work hour, as so many non profits require investments of more than 40 hours per week. As such, anything that can streamline how it runs can make your life easier and should be considered. One of the best things you can do for your non profit is look into a great donor data base (donor management software). Investing in a robust donor database to track and communicate with your donors could be very impactful for your organization.
Imagine having all of your donor information in one place instead of having multiple notes or excel spreadsheets. You could have a system that can breakdown donor history. It could allow you to keep all your donor information organized and use tools to engage and grow donor retention. A good donor data base should have:
- Great UI and an easy to navigate dashboard screen
- A great contact list that can record donor’s information
- A way to track any relevant donation history
- Methods for track communication and contact notes
- A way to track prospects, new, engaged, or lapsed donors
- Email marketing
- Fundraising and marketing tools
- Online giving platform options
- Great donor reports
- And Event registration is a plus
In the end, your donor database should be your donor data base. Look for a donor database that can cater to your non profits needs and that feels good to you.
Bonus Tip: Look for a donor database that has a donor/member portal (and the ability to make a donor profile to login to their account and update/change their donation). Great customer support is a plus as well.
And if you’re looking for even more information on strategies for donor retention, read more here.
Recording Non Profit Donations & Contribution Statements
Lastly, look for a donor database that can record donations easily and accurately and generate contribution statements for your donor.
Keep in mind that any donation over $250 requires a donation statement from your organization. It must include the non profits name, donors name, the dates of the donation and amount too.
It may seem hard to keep the focus on how much money you raise for your non profit – just don’t forget why you do what you do and to engage with your donors.
Building an active donor engagement system keeps your non profits mission alive. And remember, growing donor retention requires focus on relationships, an accessible way to donate, and a great donor database to keep you organized.
Using Software To Help Track Donations
If this all sounds overwhelming, using an online donation software solution can help make things easier. Not only will it help you automatically track your donations, but it will also provide you with tools to attract more donors. You can create giving forms to allow donors to contribute online, or through your website. Plus, you can automate giving statements and donor letters to make sure you are staying in touch with your main supporters.