Finding the Best Online Fundraising Platform: Great Online fundraising platforms for Donations!
Finding the Best Online Fundraising Platform: Great Online fundraising platforms for Donations!
In today’s highly competitive nonprofit sector, you need every advantage to grow your charity and prosper. Thankfully the best nonprofit software platforms give you the tools and resources to not just run your nonprofit on a daily basis, but to allow it to grow and thrive over time.
These highly specialized online software platforms can run every single aspect of your nonprofit in such a way that they actually end up saving your charity both a ton of time, and a ton of money. And every dollar that can be saved is a dollar that can go into fulling your mission statement and making the difference your nonprofit was intended for.
The Fundraising Platform in Modern Philanthropy
Basically, technology is the backbone of your organization and is just as integral as your donors. These platforms are a way to give your donors the ability to research your organization as well as contribute to your charitable cause from the comfort of their own homes using their computers, smartphones, or other devices.
And the best part is, this can all be done on a global scale from anywhere in the world with an internet connection. That means your small nonprofit can have a global presence instantly. And once a potential donor does find you, they should never need to leave your platform for any reason.
In a perfect world, they’d be able to look over your financials to see how you’re using your donations online. They'd also be able to see what others have to say about your organization on platforms like YouTube or Facebook all on your own branded site, as well as be privy to any upcoming events or fundraisers you have planed and what you're doing with all of your charity fundraising.
Once they’ve decided their beliefs align with your cause and are ready to donate, they should be able to choose a giving method that makes it easy for them to complete their donations as well as expect to receive a receipt instantly and be kept updated on the progress of your mission and how their fundraising donations were used.
All the while your non-profit should be able to gather data on all the traffic it’s getting and have the ability to analyze all of this in order to make better fundraising and donor management decisions in the future. This data should also be available to your entire staff from one easy to use dashboard so they can interact with your donor base in a highly personalized way.
The thing is, this perfect world does exist, right now in fact. And you’re reading this information on a platform, PayBee, that can do all of this for your nonprofit and a whole lot more. But we realize we may not match every single nonprofits needs, so we’ve looked over the top 6 platforms and given you our unique prospectives on each as a SaaS ourselves, so our reviews will be a bit more in-depth and relevant as far as fundraising features than most others you’ll read on the internet.
Features and Tools the Top Fundraising Platforms Must Offer!
There are a lot of platforms today that offer a ton of bells and whistles, but the fact is nonprofits need a very specialized toolset that most platforms overlook, or are unaware of. This is why we suggest sticking to a platform that caters to nonprofits specifically rather than those trying to be a come one, come all type service.
Typically we find that fundraising platforms that haven’t been designed and created specifically for nonprofits are often bloated, slow and hard to use and navigate due to all the extras they add. Extras that you not only will never need or use, but you’re paying for them nonetheless.
Of course for those platforms we have found that can really benefit your nonprofit, there are still those features that are most definitely must haves and should be standard in any well designed SaaS product. We’ll go over each one in detail and why they’re so important to your organization so when it does come time to choose a platform, you can clearly understand what’s essential and why.
By the way, PayBee is a powerful suite of tools that was created specifically for nonprofits that makes the donation process easy. Our easy to use and highly intuitive user dashboard makes using our platform easy for you and your entire staff. With options for donor management and a plethora of fundraising options like live auctions, silent auctions, gala events and live streaming, we offer a ton of powerful options for your nonprofit to optimize its fullest fundraising capabilities.
And it’s so easy to get started, simply go to our free demo page and open a free account. One you’re logged in, give our platform an intense test drive and see why we’re so proud of the solutions we’ve created. And of course everything is brandable and configurable to match any of your charity’s branding needs, and we’re always here to answer any questions you might have.
Great Donation Pages
Amazing donation pages are a bit technology, marketing and even a little art. These pages should not only look professional on any computer or mobile device, they should also be intuitive for your donor to use while gently persuading them it is a safe place to go ahead and make a donation to your cause.
That means these pages should offer you and your staff ways to brand everything with your non-profit’s logo, colors and other branding that makes your charitable company unique. They should also offer multiple payment buttons and payment gateway options, as well as things like SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) encryption and PCI protocols such as PCI DSS while still being lightening fast on any web browser.
All of this power should be easily customizable by you and your team and shouldn’t require an expensive programmer to build or require you to spend hours just to get the page to look right. Everything should be point and click while still accepting any special code your organization uses for tracking or other marketing efforts.
All of this offers a beautiful and fast experience for your supporters while at the same time conveying trust and transparency when you fundraise. Brandable pages with fast load times that follow standard online safety protocols always outperform and convert much easier than those that don’t.
Secure Payment Processing
Any time you accept donations or any type of fee online, there are a lot of compliance issues you need to be aware of.
Nonprofits need to comply with data protection laws, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the European Union or the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) in the United States. They must keep all types of donor information safe at all times, inform donors about data collection practices, and obtain consent where necessary.
When it comes to specifically dealing with compliance issue when processing major credit cards, you need to be sure all transactions are PCI compliant. These PCI industry standards are necessary for anyone accepting donations or payments via the world wide web, and are a set of compliance standards that assures all credit card information is stored and transmitted during the transaction in a safe and secure way.
Second, your website must offer a way to accept any type of financial transaction securely from other sources like PayPal or Vemo. This usually involves an SSL certificate combined with the newer standard HTTPS (Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure). This basically works like a cable connecting your payment processor to the donor with no way of anyone tapping into the cable. If you look at your browser it should tell you if the site is SSL certified and if the site’s SSL certificate is valid in the upper right hand corner of the address bar.
These safety protocols are necessary not just for your donor's safety when you fundraise, but for the safety and compliance of your own nonprofit as well. Having PCI complaint processing and an SSL secured website are industry standards, and any platform option not offering these basic necessities should never be included in your final assessment for the best platform for your non-profit.
Recurring Donation Payment Options
One of the best ways to get a donor to donate more to your non-profit is to offer a way for them to make an automatic donation every month without even thinking about it. Recurring payment options make it easier for you and your donor to donate consistently without ever needing to pick up the phone. So any top platform should offer a variety of ways to accept automatic recurring donations on behalf of your non-profit.
And it pays to be sure they do. This comes down to the fact that donors that create recurring payments end up donating more than 42% more per year than those making a single fundraising donation. If that isn’t incentive! And these recurring payments can even be broken down into weekly, monthly, quarterly or yearly donations. Like we always say, it’s great to have options!
Auction Fundraising Capabilities
Everyone loves a good auction whether it’s a live online event or in person. Auctions are typically an awesome way for nonprofits to raise money and auction software is regarded as a necessity in any complete nonprofit fundraising packages. These platforms not only make the process of planning, and running an auction event many times easier, they also add to the entire auction process in a myriad of ways as we’ll go over in more detail below.
Live Auction Fundraising
Live auctions are a fantastic way to not only create some profitable fundraising scenarios, but in-person events like these also help to establish community building and a way to cement personal donor relationships in an intimate setting. And let's be honest, they can be really fun and exciting! That's why at PayBee we offer a lot of different options to make your auctions awesome. For example, we can supply electronic paddles your guests can use to bid that not only tracks their entire bidding history throughout the event, our software even tallies their bids, offers a secure payment solution and lastly sends them a receipt they can use for tax free exemption on their taxes. All without any extra work on your part.
Joint Live and Virtual Auctions
How would you like to combine the above advantages with an online equivalent to boot! Imagine holding a gala or other big event and being able to give people online the same opportunities and intimacy the supporters at your live event are getting. With live streaming capabilities, the top platforms can offer your supporters a way to take part in all your auctions from anywhere in the world. And all with the same seamless tracking and giving options no matter where your donors are. These events can use any sort of fundraising activity or auction they want. The only difference is now the entire event can instantly become a global one.
Silent auctions are silent because there is no auctioneer calling out numbers like a traditional auction. They auctions are a great fundraising idea for any non-profit and when combined with an online platform, your auction can become a global event through electronic bidding. The app calculates and tracks all the bids and can arrive at the winner instantly. They work well for those nonprofits that can get their supporter base to donate items that can be then auctioned off.
A Chinese Auction, also known as a Tricky Tray or Penny Sale, is a type of fundraising event that combines elements of a silent auction with a traditional raffle. Like a silent auction, there is no one calling out bids. In fact, there is no bidding at all. Rather, each person buys raffle tickets that you offer for a fee and places them in the appropriate container in front of the prize they want to win. The only way the can improve their chances of winning for a particular prize is to add more tickets. Your donors can’t outbid each other. If you want to try running your own Chinese auction, check out our article on Chinese Auction Basket Fundraising Ideas here.
Matching Gift Technology
One of the newer technological advances for the nonprofit industry is the advent of matching donation software. This option offers companies a way to set up corporate matching giving programs for your nonprofit organization, thus allowing a company match their employees' charitable donations, effectively doubling or sometimes even tripling the impact of individual giving with no extra work on your end.
Peer to Peer Fundraising
Another easy way for your nonprofit to make more in contributions while doing less work is to offer your donors peer to peer fundraising options. Peer-to-peer fundraising is when donors want to create their own landing page branded to them and drive traffic to their page themselves, saving you a lot of time and money.
A sophisticated platform offers these types of features and allows your donors to create and manage their own fundraiser donor pages, and then contact their own friends, family members and so on and invite them to donate on their page. Since they are contacting people they know personally, the conversions for these types of donor pages can be incredible high which is why they’re another must have on our list.
The Top 6 Best Online Fundraising Platforms for Your Nonprofit
1. PayBee - Elevating Fundraising Excellence
As a comprehensive philanthropic platform, we take immense pride in delivering our clients top-tier services and securing our standing as the premier fundraising solution for your team. PayBee distinguishes itself by offering an impressive array of non-profit specific features that surpass most other platforms, all at remarkably competitive rates. Our suite of sophisticated yet user-friendly tools empowers you to seamlessly orchestrate in-person and hybrid events.
Revolutionize your online fundraising endeavors with our efficient system, providing and intuitive tool-set for fundraising donation collection and hosting limitless, high-caliber galas. Craft customizable donation forms aligned with your nonprofit's branding, all while overseeing every aspect of your online presence—from campaign page aesthetics to donation form font size—via our intuitive user-friendly dashboard.
Unlock a treasure trove of fundraising utilities, from managing staff and backend paperwork to scheduling and resource procurement. Whether your gala is a golfing event or a Chinese silent auction, our solution overview transforms your fundraising concepts into reality, offering diverse avenues to meet your financial goals. In essence, fundraising has never been more accessible!
The true catalyst for your non-profit's empowerment lies in our event hosting modules. Begin with PayBee's event management software, streamlining communication between guests and staff. From personalized email campaigns to video chats, effortlessly manage updates, such as date and venue changes, and even design seating charts for your attendees.
Expand the reach of your galas globally by live streaming through popular platforms like Twitch or YouTube. Foster interactive networking opportunities for guests, engaging with virtual attendees in real-time and conducting Q&A sessions for a personalized touch.
Our platform excels in both live and silent auctions for giving oppertunities. For live events, offer personalized bidding paddles with QR codes, simplifying bidding and payment processes. Virtual or hybrid events benefit from mobile apps and online auction software, fostering a global bidding environment and friendly competition, ultimately maximizing funds for your cause.
Moreover, our platform preserves event data for easy access, enabling you to not only track fundraising donations but also analyze guest contributions, bids, and item sales. This data-driven approach informs powerful fundraising strategies, propelling you toward even loftier financial goals. Whether hosting an in-person, online, or hybrid gala, PayBee equips you with all the features to effortlessly organize a successful fundraiser that's both simple and enjoyable. Plus we even offer fundraising tips and other information on our website's blog.
To quote, 'End to end fundraising events solution. Paybee handles all your event needs from ticketing, invitations, auctions, donations, reports and more!'
2. Fundly - The Crowdfunding Option to Fundraise
Opting for Fundly is an excellent decision for smaller foundations seeking to raise funds without the comprehensive toolset provided by PayBee. Functioning more as a crowdsourcing platform, Fundly not only facilitates fundraising but also attracts additional traffic and new members to your organization.
Fundly boasts a streamlined and user-friendly interface for both your team's backend operations and your supporters' frontend experience. While offering customization options for the space you create on their site, it's important to note that the extent of customization capabilities is somewhat limited.
The platform allows you to incorporate a blog featuring diverse content formats, including text articles, images, and videos—all easily shareable and seamlessly integrated with major social media sites. Notably, Fundly enables the acceptance of group fundraising donations directly from Facebook, eliminating redirects and convoluted URLs, which proves advantageous for your social media campaigns.
Peer-to-peer fundraising is a standout feature of Fundly, providing a hands-free revenue-generating avenue. Supporters can establish their personal fundraising pages, circulating them among family and friends to garner contributions for your cause, requiring minimal effort from your team.
Fundly includes event management tools for effective communication, tracking, and campaign launches. Seamless integration with Eventbrite is also available for organizations utilizing the platform. The site offers decent analytics and reporting, empowering you to monitor crucial data. Additionally, it goes the extra mile by allowing you to embed maps, providing a visual representation of donor locations for trend spotting or targeted outreach in your future fundraisers.
In summary, Fundly serves as an ideal team fundraising platform for burgeoning organizations that prioritize simplicity and don't require an extensive array of tools for their fundraising events. You need to speak with them when it comes to the fee for using their website.
3. Donorbox - Online Fundraising Software
Donorbox is another on our list of the best fundraising platforms and is known for its swift setup and user-friendly features. Trusted by over 50,000 organizations across 96 countries, Donorbox eliminates start-up fees and contractual concerns. It simplifies online giving, providing a seamless experience for fundraisers of various scales.
This platform empowers users to effortlessly craft branded donation forms, commencing fundraising within minutes. Noteworthy features include the ability to establish crowdfunding campaigns with visual goal thermometers and donor walls, conduct text-to-give initiatives, and initiate peer-to-peer campaigns swiftly. Donorbox accommodates membership campaigns through its Memberships feature, creates event pages with unlimited tickets, and seamlessly integrates live fundraising through the innovative Donorbox Live™ Kiosk app.
Beyond these capabilities, Donorbox allows donors to allocate their contributions to specific projects and facilitates tribute donation giving in memory of loved ones. It offers a user-friendly interface for donors to manage accounts, donation plans, and receipts. Moreover, the platform supports the collection of supporter information and the cultivation of donor relationships.
Donorbox's versatility extends to payment methods, including Google Pay, Apple Pay, Venmo, credit cards, bank transfers, and PayPal. Notably, it accommodates cryptocurrency and stock donations through a powerful integration. The platform seamlessly connects with various systems, such as MailChimp, Zapier, Double the Donation, Salesforce, and multiple web design platforms.
To foster global support, Donorbox accepts donations in over 20 currencies and facilitates donation forms in 11 languages. Catering to nonprofits of all sizes, its pricing structure is transparent. Standard pricing entails a $0 monthly fee, a 1.75% platform fee, and payment processing fees of 2.2% + $0.30 for Stripe and PayPal. Pro pricing, at $139/month, includes a 1.5% platform fee, mirroring payment processing fees. For customized needs, Premium pricing offers dedicated account management, fundraising coaching, priority technical support, and more.
Donorbox's commitment to transparency extends to allowing donors to cover fees, ensuring that a larger portion of their contribution directly supports the cause. Further details on pricing can be explored on the platform's website.
4. FundRazr - Virtual Fundraising with a Peer Centric Fundraiser
Positioning itself as a cost-free online giving platform without hidden charges, FundRazr pledges to support the success of nonprofits and their teams. However, it's crucial to recognize that even with its "Simply Free" tier, there are associated costs, including an optional tip from donors to cover the platform fee, which could impact potential fundraising donations. Additionally, you need to be mindful of payment processing fees, which may be the standard third-party rate or fees imposed by PayPal or Stripe, or a specially negotiated non-profit rate. Alternatively, FundRazr offers pricing models with a standard 5% platform fee borne by your organization.
Given FundRazr's competitive pricing, there are constraints on the types of fundraisers you can organize. Nevertheless, the platform provides visually appealing fundraising pages, social sharing features for event organizers, and options for peer-based fundraising. Depending on your fundraising approach, FundRazr might offer cost savings, making it a worthwhile consideration if your team has a dedicated organizer with the time to invest. The platform also caters to the specific needs of online fundraisers for sports teams, offering specialized tools for events, walks, and runs. While not the most feature-rich platform, FundRazr can contribute to your success, especially if you're working within a tight budget.
5. BetterWorld - Empowering Sports Team Fundraising through Donations
BetterWorld is a no-cost, cloud-based fundraising platform used by numerous nonprofits and individuals. Tailored specifically for sports teams, this platform facilitates fundraising for tournaments, trips, and championships, allowing you to secure funds for essential elements like gear, uniforms, and athlete training resources and certifications. Donors benefit from BetterWorld's mobile-optimized pages, enabling them to contribute directly via their phones during sports games and events, enhancing the convenience of sports fundraising.
Utilize the software to conduct online auctions, launch crowdfunding campaigns, sell tickets, and organize raffles and giveaway fundraisers. Creating a sports team account on BetterWorld takes only a few minutes and provides a centralized hub for all your fundraising activities. The software includes pre-designed templates and seamless social media integrations to enhance the promotion of your fundraisers.
While BetterWorld operates as a free fundraising platform, it still has pricing you need to be aware of. Donors incur a 2.9%+ $0.30 credit card transaction fee on their contributions. However, donors have the option to cover this fee, allowing your group to retain a larger portion of the raised funds. Additionally, BetterWorld is sustained by voluntary contributions from donors, with suggested pricing at $0.25 to 10% on top of ticket purchases and winning bids. This means that a portion of your supporters' generosity contributes to the sustainability of the free software.
Despite these considerations, BetterWorld earns commendation for its user-friendly interface, responsive customer service, rich features, and value, positioning it as a practical choice for budget-conscious sports teams that want to fundraise without a lot of hassles.
6. Mightycause - Two Tier Pricing Software
Mightycause brands themselves as a comprehensive fundraising suite, providing a versatile array of features to streamline your fundraising initiatives similar to PayBee. This all-in-one software features user-friendly donor management options, robust peer-to-peer fundraising support, and more, making it a convenient solution for organizations seeking a multifaceted approach to fundraising.
Within Mightycause, you can craft tailored fundraising donation pages that seamlessly align with your organization's brand identity. The software lets you to create and run unlimited fundraising campaigns and accept a monthly recurring donation. Integration is made easy with the option to embed donation forms and widgets directly into your website. Whether you're planning a text-to-give campaign or diving into crowdfunding, Mightycause accommodates diverse fundraising strategies. The inclusion of peer-to-peer fundraising tools enhances your outreach efforts, maximizing the impact of your campaigns. To keep you informed, Mightycause provides a user-friendly fundraising dashboard equipped with at-a-glance metrics and comprehensive reports.
For organizations seeking a spectrum of fundraising tools and are open to a monthly subscription or contractual commitment, Mightycause offers two pricing tiers and no free version. The starting price for the Essentials plan is $59 per month (billed annually), caters to online fundraising campaign needs. Meanwhile, the Advanced plan, with pricing available at $99 per month (billed annually), extends its support to include tools for event management, volunteer coordination, and more. It's important to note that processing fees of 0.95% and 29¢ apply to transactions conducted through the platform on top of the previously stated pricing. Mightycause emerges as a valuable resource, combining functionality with flexibility for organizations navigating various facets of their fundraising campaign.
Evaluating Usability and Accessibility for Fundraising Sites
In order for these software sites to be truly effective, they must be easy to use both from a donor’s and your staff’s perspective. You really need to try a demo of a platform in order to see just how user-friendly it is. Just taking their word that they are a user-friendly software doesn’t necessarily make it so as we’ve found in our research.
The first thing to look for is how easy is it for you to use, navigate, perform tasks and make any changes to any part of the whole. Non-profit software is meant to save you time and money, not to require you to have a university degree in technology. Everything should be easy to find from one dedicated dashboard that your entire non-profit will be using simultaneously.
From your dashboard you should be able to easily navigate to whichever section or tool you need in one click, then perform your task intuitively if the platform really is that well thought and laid out. This is where you’ll send your staff in order for them to perform their tasks, and it needs to be easily comprehensible to them as well. You do not want to waste valuable time training every new employee on your nonprofit’s software.
This is the same for your donors. They should land on your page and be able to find everything they would want right from your starting page. Donation buttons should be large and clearly labeled. Menus should be easy to navigate. And signing up for your email campaign list or becoming a member should be a simple process and require the least amount of effort on their part. You do not want to loose a potential donor because you’re software is slow, or too sophisticated to find a donate button or read your blog.
Online Fundraising Platform Data Analytics and Insights
One of the features of using an online software platform is its ability to give you feedback and data on a variety of variables for any project. These insights can allow nonprofits to better understand your donor’s behavior and their preferences, giving you an advantage when it comes to organizing future successful fundraising campaigns and seeing where possible new opportunities lie.
Things like donor conversion rate can be tracked so you know how well your website visitors are are converting to an actual donation. This type of data can tell you how well your platform is effectively engaging and convincing visitors to contribute and if your marketing strategies need to be changed to boost conversions.
You can also track fundraising donation sizes and the top days donating occurred. And on the topic of money, cost per dollar raised is another important metric and let you see exactly how much money your spending on fundraising campaign efforts for every dollar your organization raises.
You can even track your traffic sources to see where your visitors are coming from and make tweaks to those that are not performing as well as you’d like, and push more focus on the ones that are working well. Sources like organic search, social media and email campaigns can all be tracked to understand exactly how well they are performing or not.
Another crucial metric is donor retention rate. With this information you can see how well your platform is building lasting relationships with supporters, reducing the need to constantly acquire new donors which of course saves you time and money.
You can even go deeper and track and analyze your donor demographics that include their age, location, and interests. This can really let you hone in on helps tailoring campaigns to specific demographics that create more targeted and personalized marketing efforts.
By regularly tracking and analyzing these metrics, you’ll get a much clearer picture of all the things your non-profit is doing well, and where things may need some addition work or resources. These types of data can mean the difference between a mediocre non-profit and a thriving one. So don’t discount the power of data analytics.
Understanding Pricing Structures
There are two main types of pricing for online fundraising platforms. These include a straight monthly pricing structure with no other hidden fees involved other than the stated monthly fees, and a sort of pay-as-you-go option that takes a percentage of your fundraising donation rather than a flat fee. Deciding on which pricing strategy is best for your organization will have a lot to do with its size and what features and tools you really need to be successful.
If you’re just starting out and the chances are you’ll always be small, like under $100k per year, then you may not need much at all and a pay-as-you-go type model may be your best bet, or even a simple crowdfunding platform. But if your charitable company takes in millions a year, then the percentage platforms charge on your gross fundraising donations will be far more than the monthly pricing structure.
One thing to mention here is even though you may not be big enough for a certain fee structure right now, if you feel your non-profit will grow you may want to take that into consideration. The reason being is it is not easy to switch what you've been using down the road. People get used to what they are using daily, and no one like change. So think about the future of your non-profit as much as where you are now when making your decision.
Also be sure to ask or look for any additional fees that may not be so obvious. Read the fine print! Some less scrupulous SaaS companies will state a price, but add extra fees for things that seemed like were included in the original quote. If add-ons like auctions or recurring giving options are just that, options that need to be paid for on top of the standard fees, you’re better off if you just continue your search. All of these little fees can add up quickly!
Good Support and Training for Nonprofits
No matter how intuitive a company’s online fundraising software is, there are always going to be questions that come up, or technical glitches that can happen with any software. It’s just part of using an online platform.
And software companies that care about their client base recognize this and have both customer support and training resources in place to mediate any problems that may arise. And we’ve often found that the best SaaS companies place a lot of importance in giving their clients 24 hour access and multiple ways of contacting their support team. They’ve also created a well laid out training manual that offers many of the solutions beginner users may experience.
Often times the very top platforms will also integrate a blog in order to help their users keep updated on any software changes, or technical challenges they may be experiencing. Constant updates and upgrades are always evolving the software, and changes can impact your use in different ways. When a company posts updated information on their blog, they’re not only helping their clientele, but also keeping their support team from being flooded with calls.
So always look for companies that offer twenty four hour support, and can be reached in a variety of way including live chat, email and by telephone. Also, if the company has been around a while, they should have a large glossary of training resources on using their platform and how to get the most out of it.
Here at PayBee our blog also includes a ton of other information that we feel can help your non-profit become even more successful, and we are constantly adding to and updating our information to give your non-profit the edge it needs to thrive. You can check out our blog here. Let us know if there is something you’d like to know or learn about that we haven’t gotten to yet and we’ll make it a priority.
One real life tip here when evaluating the quality of support services we’ve found through our research. Literally try using the support options the company has listed on their website. Then see if you’re being assisted in a way that makes you comfortable. Literally send an email, try their live chat and give them a call. If you’re assisted by their support team in a supporting way (pun intended), then the company should be one that you can count on and really cares for their user base.
Integration Capabilities with Other Tools and Apps
There really is no one platform that will do every single thing you could ever want, nor would one be cheap or easy to use. And that is totally acceptable. Fundraising software should focus on your fundraising campaigns and similar tasks that nonprofits need. They should be fast and easy to use. But what they need to do is to be able to be expanded upon. This means they must have the ability to integrate other tools into their software and these integrations should be plug-and-play.
Honestly I wouldn’t want my software to also be a Pinterest board, Facebook feed and YouTube channel all in one. It totally defeats the purpose of those traffic sources. But I do want a platform where these tools can be incorporated into my workflow and be available to my supporters through my own blog or informational feed on my platform.
In addition, there are just so many options for specific instances that no one platform could never include them all. And those tools perform their specific duties extremely well. So why load down a software with tools that already perform perfectly?
Tools like Zapier and Slack are classy workflow automation tools while CRM's like Salesforce and Zoho are excellent at what they do and come with competitive pricing. Other options like and the OpenAI API Offer excellent AI support options that can dramatically trim down your support tickets and inbox inquiries. Aweber and ConvertKit are great email campaign options if you are placing serious importance on email marketing and campaigns to generate revenues. And simple apps like Facebook Messenger should be a given when it comes to integration. Awesome software has the ability to integrate with all of these and more.
You should always make a list of what tools or apps you’re currently using in your daily business. Then see if the software solution you’re evaluating also integrates with these tools out of the box, or they can offer support if they don’t. It’s much easier to use one dashboard to run your entire operation that logging in to multiple places and having everything scattered about.
Is there free online fundraising Solutions I can use?
The best best online fundraising platforms that would be free to use would be crowdfunding websites like GoFundMe or Fundly. These types of online platforms are often free to use with payments coming out of the fundraising donation you receive rather than a monthly fee. They rely on many individuals searching to give their support and are a easy way for small projects to get off the ground as they already have their own traffic.
And although features like crowdfunding aren’t always included in nonprofit platforms, they can be used as a way to start a nonprofit with no money. But remember, you won’t have a lot of control like when you’re using a platform like PayBee or the other recommendations mentioned here.
What’s the importance of data security and privacy?
Whenever you’re working with online fundraising, data security and privacy are always a priority. In fact, they are required by law and leaking your donor data, whether financial or just personal records, can cause a lot of legal headaches. Not to mention your company completely loosing the trust of its supporter base.
The key basic security measures all fundraising platforms must include are updated SSL certification and PCI compliance. These two security protocols work in tandem to create a secure environment for your data as well as financial transactions. Make sure whichever software you choose to run your nonprofit incorporates both of these industry standards into their solutions.
How can an online fundraising platform help with donor cultivation?
Online fundraising platforms can help with communication and engagement with personalized email campaigns, newsletters, and automated thank-you messages. These solutions support the hosting of virtual events and tracking attendance as well as your donors giving while providing insights for tailored interactions. In addition, analytics and reporting aid in evaluating donor retention and engagement trends throughout the entire donor cultivation cycle.
Can you fundraise for personal reasons?
Yes, fundraising isn't just for large charities or organizations. With sites like GoFundMe, anyone can engage in a fundraising campaign all on their own and seek a donation. But you wouldn't want to use a full online fundraising platform, rather crowdsouring sites will be a better alternative as they are often far more affordable, and they have the extra plus on in-built traffic.
How to raise money for a charitable cause as a teenager?
Legally a minor can start their own nonprofit and raise money. But if you are looking to assist a charitable company and want to become active in charitable fundraising for a specific cause you feel connected with, the recommended way would to ask if they can generate peer-to-peer pages for you to use for your own personal virtual fundraising. This allows you to have your own presence or fundraising site without the need to create anything yourself.
Are there other Fundraiser sites not on your list?
Yes, there are a lot of fundraising websites out there that aren’t on our list that may work for your nonprofit. Sites such as Donorbox, Givebutter and Onecause are a few more options you can look into and are also some of the best fundraising sites and even have decent pricing.