How to Choose a Fundraising Platform for a Nonprofit?
Posted on February 10, 2021
The fundraising landscape has undergone a complete transformation during the last year. These changes were probably imminent, but the pandemic has speeded the process. A phenomenal rise in the number of donors worldwide coupled with online donations becoming the preferred mode of giving have given nonprofits food for thought on adapting to the changing scenario!
Although 2020 was not a year to write home about, it has been a year that has witnessed a boost of nearly 7.5% in year on year giving in the first six months. (Source: Report by Fundraising Effectiveness Project) It is also encouraging to observe that the first six months of 2020 also saw an increase 12.6% in new donors and the donor retention rate surged by 1.8%. (Source: Philanthropy News Digest )
It is heartening to observe the growth in the attitude among people across different demographics globally to donate in different ways to charities amid the pandemic. However, when an individual or an organization donates, they would like to make sure that they are connecting with genuine nonprofits. Hence, the onus is entirely on the nonprofit to use the right resources and establish its creditability. An online fundraising platform is the best way for a nonprofit to make itself visible in the digital world.
Also, the nonprofit should ensure that it offers and experience that meets the expectations of its users.
What do the donors want?
- Information about the nonprofit before they donate.
- They want simple and secure donation methods.
- They want to feel a part of a charity initiative.
- There are some who also want their act of philanthropy to be in the public eye.
Fundraising platforms are the best solution for nonprofits to cope with the ever-changing demands of the audience.
A fundraising platform offers a central source to manage different aspects of online fundraising. It helps manage multiple donors, organize campaigns, offer forms, facilitate credit card donations and many more.
When you search for best fundraising websites on Google, you will find a list of names such as Classy, Fundly, Donately, etc. And, when you look at the detailed information about each one, you will find that each one offers features that might be just right for your nonprofit! So, which one do you choose?
Selecting a fundraiser can be quite overwhelming!
Let me make it easy for you by breaking it into small bites:
Step 1: Establishing the Purpose of the Platform
First, you need to find out why you need a fundraising platform-what are you trying to achieve through the platform? For instance, is your platform for attracting new donors or is it to move your existing donors to an online space? Each of such objectives warrant different features of the fundraising platform. Therefore, if you are clear with the purpose, it will make it easier for you to shortlist relevant platforms.
Step 2: Determining Fundraising Strategies for your Nonprofit
Each charity adopts different fundraising strategies such as crowdfunding, charity auctions, peer-to-peer fundraising, etc. There is specific software that supports each of these strategies. Therefore, you can select the platforms that offer the relevant software for your purpose. It may also happen that you may require a combination of software. It is recommended that you choose a platform that supports most fundraising strategies. Also, it should have the flexibility to support additional needs at a later stage. Identifying the relevant software further narrows down your search for the best fundraising platform.
Step 3: Comparing Online Fundraising Platforms
You can compare the different platforms based on the following criteria:
1. Support Offered: Make sure to check the support and training offered for setting up and running the online fundraising platform.
2. Flexibility to Customize: It is also important to choose a platform that can be customized for your nonprofit. it should be easy to customize the forms, etc. with your logo and color scheme so that it is easy for your audience to identify your brand.
3. Ease of Use: Choose a platform that is easy for you to set up and run while offering an excellent experience to your users.
You need to make donating simple for your users. Therefore, choose a fundraising website that is user-friendly and easy to navigate. Also, make sure that your online donation platform offers plenty of secure donation options to users.
Make sure that the fundraising platform is responsive and allows donations through mobile as well.
4. Budget: By now you would have shortlisted the best online fundraising platforms for your nonprofit. Most of these nonprofit fundraising websites will likely offer comparable features. You can filter out the online fundraising platforms based on your budget. The cost of the platform is a vital factor for selection. While you must not compromise on the features required, you need to ascertain that the cost of the online fundraising platform is within your budget. It is recommended to conduct a cost-benefit analysis before deciding on the best online fundraising platform. Also, bear in mind that you might have to bear additional expenses for add-ons for some fundraising platforms.
Step 4: Finalizing
Once you have narrowed down your options to 2-3 fundraising platforms for nonprofits, check the reliability and performance. The best way to verify these aspects is by looking at the reviews and testimonials posted on the site. You could even connect with users and ask them about their experience with the platform. This will help you finalize the best online fundraising platform for your nonprofit.
This is a brief overview of how you can choose the best online fundraising platform for your nonprofit.
One of the best fundraising platforms for a nonprofit is iConnectX. This platform has all the features to support end-to-end event management, secure donations, forms, etc. iConnectX is a platform that has a long history in the field of philanthropy. It has been a part of several nonprofit initiatives over the years supporting both offline and online nonprofit events. The proven track record of iConnectX makes it an ideal fundraising platform for nonprofits. This platform supports a myriad of online fundraising strategies such as online auctions, crowdfunding, and many more.
iConnectX is a platform that has evolved over the years adapting to changing circumstances adopting innovative technologies. It has kept pace with technology to ensure that it offers its users the best experience while participating in philanthropic activities. It is a technologically advanced platform with regular updates to offer users the best features.