How Does Nonprofit Fundraising Look Today?

How Does Nonprofit Fundraising Look Today?

Nonprofit fundraising galas are exciting. You get to meet your longtime donors and supporters. You also get to interact with new volunteers and educate them about your mission. And you get to treat everyone to some great fundraising activities, including auctions, fun runs, and dances.

Today, though, nonprofit fundraising can be done in many ways. Thanks to modern technology and online platforms like PayBee, your organization can raise money in ways charities and nonprofits could only dream of just a few decades ago.

In this article, we’ll examine what nonprofit fundraising is. We’ll also look at the multiple ways your nonprofit can fundraise today, using old and new technology.

What is Nonprofit Fundraising?

Nonprofit fundraising is the way charitable organizations like yours request donations from businesses and individuals to fund your nonprofit’s programs and activities. Fundraising also helps raise awareness of your cause and shows your supporters how their contributions make an impact in their community.

How Can Your Nonprofit Fundraise?

These days, nonprofits use a variety of fundraising methods. Based on the needs of your organization and donors, you can raise money through:

In-person fundraisers

Sometimes, the old ways are still the best. Traditional in-person fundraisers attract people to community events like charity concerts or carnivals. Supporters get to interact with each other while donating to your nonprofit by buying tickets or purchasing memorabilia.

In-person fundraisers are especially popular among people suffering from “virtual fatigue” who want to interact with their friends and community members in person. There’s something special about meeting people face-to-face, so in-person fundraisers can generate a level of activity not seen in other fundraisers.    

Virtual fundraising events

The 2020 pandemic led to a major shift in how nonprofits hosted their fundraisers. Thanks to live stream technology and online fundraising platforms, nonprofit organizations and charities were able to keep their programs going by letting supporters meet and donate online. People could continue to experience online versions of classic events like auctions and concerts in these virtual spaces, and could even interact through online chats and video calls.

One great thing about virtual fundraisers is they attract huge audiences from different states and countries, greatly extending a nonprofit’s reach. Virtual events are also less expensive to host, letting nonprofits use more of the raised funds for their programs.

Hybrid fundraising events

Hybrid fundraisers bring the best of both worlds together by letting supporters meet in-person and online at the same time. With the right live streaming technology, virtual audiences can experience the same event in real time with in person guests and even participate in activities like auctions, raffles, and even luncheons.

These fundraisers do often require two teams to accommodate your virtual and in-person guests and make sure they have a good experience. However, you’ll also be able to reach new donors and increase your support network thanks to the larger audience hybrid fundraisers connect with.

Live and silent auctions

A true classic, live auctions let your supporters bid on vacation packages, memorabilia, and other fun auction items in an active in-person or virtual event run by a professional auctioneer. People can place bids by raising physical paddles or through their mobile devices, increasing your revenue streams.   

Meanwhile, silent auctions can be held over several days or even weeks before your actual fundraiser. This fundraising activity lets guests place online bids for auction items displayed on your website. It’s a great way to not only raise funds but also build excitement for your main fundraising event.  

Peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns

Peer-to-peer fundraisers are a great way to get your volunteers actively involved in your fundraiser. These campaigns allow individual supporters to create a fundraising webpage they can share with their social media network. After collecting funds from their peers, your volunteers donate the proceeds to your nonprofit.

Recurring donation fundraising

Did you know you can prompt your donors to make their one-time donation into recurring monthly donations? Not all nonprofits offer this option, but those that do find that recurring donors are 440% more valuable to your nonprofit than one-time donors, according to “The State of Modern Philanthropy 2018.”

Even if each recurring donation is smaller than a one-time donation, the overall value of these donations increases over time. Plus, giving smaller, regular donations is easier on budgets, leading to better donor retention.

Major gift fundraising

Selling tickets and collecting recurring donations all generate revenue, but many nonprofits also go after major gifts, or donations of $1000 or more. These can come from corporate gifts, legacy donations, or even generous individual donors. Such large donations go a long way in supporting your nonprofit programs.  

Selling branded merchandise

Odds are, your nonprofit has several pieces of branded merchandise, from hats to T-shirts to calendars highlighting your impact on the community. Not only does this merchandise help increase awareness of your cause, they also provide an additional way to generate revenue by selling these items at your events and gatherings.

You can even turn the process of creating branded merchandise into fundraising activities—for instance, by creating T-shirt design contests or running a photography contest to find images for next year’s calendar.  

How to Collect and Record Donations

With all the different ways to fundraise today, you’ll need an efficient system to collect and record your incoming donations. Fortunately, technology is up to the task.

PayBee’s online platform enables you to collect one-time, long pledge, and recurring donations. You’ll also be able to easily create websites for peer-to-peer campaigns and accept everything from credit card payments to donations made through Apple Pay. 

You’ll also be able to generate automated donation receipts and view an in-depth record of all the donations and pledges your guests gave to your fundraiser. You’ll even be able to see which activities were the most popular, enabling you to create better fundraising events in the future. 

Getting Started

Ready to discover which fundraising events are a good fit for your nonprofit? Then sign up for a free online demo of PayBee’s online platform. You’ll experience first-hand what a virtual live auction is like and be able to ask your questions about nonprofit fundraising to our team of experts. There’s plenty to learn about what nonprofit fundraising looks like today, so sign up for a free demo now!  

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Nonprofit Fundraising
Michael Jung


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