7 Super Easy Ways to Improve Your Online Fundraising

These days, you’re probably looking for ways to boost your online fundraising. Findings from the 18th annual online fundraising “Benchmarks” report from M+R show that online fundraising remained relatively flat in 2023.

It’s not difficult to track down ideas for how to improve online fundraising. But some approaches take a significant investment of time and money – something that’s not always easy to find.

So, what do you do when you need to give your online fundraising a lift and you don’t have extra resources to devote to it? Try these easy approaches to take your fundraising up a notch.

Seven easy tips to improve online fundraising

1. Make your donation page easy to find.

The last thing you want is for donors to lose interest in donating because they can’t find your online donation page. Make sure your “donate” button and any links to your donation page are in can’t-miss locations on your website, email communications, and campaign pages.

2. Simplify your donation form.

The longer it takes for someone to fill out your online donation form, the greater the chance they’ll become distracted or frustrated before completing it. So, take a little time to review your donation form to see if there are ways you can simplify it. Be sure to ask for only the information you need to process the donation properly.

3. Associate giving levels with your nonprofit’s mission.

In your fundraising emails and online donation page, tie giving levels to what the funds will help your organization to accomplish. It will only take you a few minutes to include details about the impact a donation can make. Telling supporters that their donation can, for example, provide the funding for your nonprofit to serve food for a family of four for a year is far more compelling than just asking for a specific amount of money.

4. Ask donors to make their gifts recurring.

Research shows that monthly donors give more annually than their one-time donor counterparts. So, give donors the option to make their gift a recurring gift, with the convenience of monthly donations charged automatically to their credit cards.

5. Ask donors to cover transaction fees.

You know those pesky transaction fees that you must pay your payment processor each time someone donates through your online form? You can recapture some of those lost funds by including an option in your online donation form for donors to cover the cost of the transaction fee, which means more money will go directly to your nonprofit. It’s important to note this is different from the tipping model some fundraising platforms use. With tipping, some or all of the additional funds go to the platform itself to cover operating costs, including server maintenance, customer support, and other expenses.

6. Embed a matching gift tool in your donation form.

Matching gift tools are a simple addition to your web pages and donation forms. Using one of these tools makes it much easier for your donors to seek matching gifts and for your nonprofit to track expected gift matches. It also helps you to ensure you aren’t leaving money on the table with each donation.

7. Ask your top supporters for help.

You don’t have to do everything yourself. Reach out to some of your top volunteers and donors and ask them to share one of your fundraising campaigns, and why they support your organization, with their social networks. This is a low-effort and low-cost – yet effective – way to extend your fundraising reach. If you’re willing to take on a higher-effort strategy that leverages your top supporters, try hosting a peer-to-peer fundraising campaign!

Learn more tips for improving your fundraising

There’s almost always an opportunity to take your fundraising up a notch by trying something new. Learn more tips for improving your fundraising. Read the guide, How to Use Data to Take Your Fundraising to New Heights.

Author: Mark Becker, Founding Partner, Cathexis Partners

Mark founded Cathexis Partners in 2008, providing technical and consultative services to nonprofits of all sizes and types. He previously served as director of IT consulting at a fundraising event production company focused on nonprofits. For more than 20 years, Mark has supported hundreds of nonprofit online fundraising efforts.

Wrapping Up

Here are three other fundraising resources your nonprofit should check out: