How to Use QR Codes to Collect Donations for Your Nonprofit

How to Use QR Codes to Collect Donations for Your Nonprofit

When you’re holding a fundraising event for your nonprofit or charity, you want donating to be as convenient as possible for your guests. Your supporters might come to your gala feeling generous, but if your software makes financial transactions and check-out difficult, you may experience a drop in your revenue.

Fortunately, fundraising platform providers like PayBee offer a convenient way for your guests to donate quickly, securely, and generously. And best of all, it’s a method that can be applied to your in-person, virtual, or hybrid events.

It’s called using QR codes.

What are QR Codes?

QR codes are a type of matrix barcode, usually consisting of black and white squares, that can appear on everything from computer screens to printed materials. You’ve probably seen QR codes at restaurants, museums, movie theaters, and sports stadiums.

When you scan a QR code using the camera on your smartphone, the code will redirect you to a website, an online form, or any Internet page you set up.

In this age of contactless payments and social distancing, QR codes have become a part of everyday life. Restaurants are replacing physical menus with QR codes that let diners see food and drink options on their phones. Museum patrons scan QR codes on placards to learn more about exhibits. Even movie tickets are now QR codes that get scanned by ushers when you walk into a theater.

How QR Codes Help Maximize Donations at Nonprofit Fundraisers

The great thing about QR codes is that you can place them anywhere, from websites to physical flyers to the bid paddles you raise at online auctions. By giving guests such immediate access to your online resources, your virtual, in-person, and hybrid events will run much smoother.

This also grants your donors a contactless way of donating that’s more convenient than paying by cash or check. Since people aren’t comfortable about physical payments these days (and strict precautions may prevent you from offering these traditional forms of giving), QR codes provide the perfect way to get around this issue.

Here are just a few ways you can use QR codes at your next fundraiser:

Place QR codes on your silent auction bid sheets

Silent auctions are an excellent way to raise money for your nonprofit and build buzz for your main fundraiser. Since silent auctions can begin days or weeks before your fundraising gala, you’ll be able to bring in revenue very early and encourage enthusiastic bidding on your auction items.

To make the process even smoother, PayBee lets you generate bid sheets for your in-person silent auction. Each auction item on these sheets will have an item-specific QR code that guests can scan, letting them place their bids online with their phones.

Since you can place these bid sheets anywhere at your event, the QR codes make bidding much easier. Your guests can literally bid from anywhere at your venue instead of going to a specific spot for the auction (which also makes social distancing much easier). 

Guests can also receive live text updates if they get outbid by another guest. This helps motivate them to keep raising their bids, generating more revenue for your nonprofit or charity.

Use QR codes on flyers and other printed materials

When you’re putting on a virtual fundraiser, PayBee makes it easy for you to provide links on your website that leads guests to your donation page. When guests are milling around at your in-person or hybrid fundraiser, PayBee’s QR codes help perform the same function.

Place flyers, posters, and other printed materials with QR codes all around your event venue to encourage guests to donate. People who scan these QR codes with their smart phones will immediately be taken to your donation form, letting them give instantly.

Work with your event team and decorators to place your QR codes in strategic areas where your supporters will be compelled to scan and donate. From attractive posters to table settings, QR codes can fit into any décor.

Provide guests with PayBee bid paddles

Realizing our in-person guests love holding up physical auction paddles when they bid at live auctions, PayBee makes it simple to automatically generate a bid paddle for each of your guests using our online platform.

Each paddle includes a unique number and QR code that can be scanned with the PayBee app to purchase items, make donations, and even close your cart at checkout.

PayBee bid paddles can be printed with ease using most at-home printers since they’re generated in PDF format and made to fit the aspect ratio of a standard 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper. Each printout folds down the center so the donor’s number will show on both sides of the paddle, making it easier for auctioneers to spot their numbers. And you can use the sheets with any handle of your choosing.

Streamline check-in with QR codes on event tickets

Ask anyone who attends a lot of fundraising galas, and they’ll agree that checking in to an in-person fundraiser can be a hassle. Reading and verifying physical tickets manually is time consuming, and you can easily get stuck in a line with other guests while waiting to be seated or let in to a venue.

This is particularly problematic today since people want to avoid congestion in large gatherings.   

To avoid this, PayBee’s event tickets now come equipped with QR codes that can be quickly scanned and verified by event staff. Your volunteers and ushers will be able to immediately guide guests to their tables and let them enjoy the event amenities much faster.

This puts guests in a much better mood — which is often reflected in their generosity when donation opportunities come up.

Final Thoughts

Knowing how to properly use QR codes makes a huge difference for nonprofit and charity fundraisers, especially in this new era of contactless payments and donations. People are being conditioned to instinctively scan QR codes at events — meaning it’s to your advantage to incorporate QR codes into your event tickets, décor, bid sheets, and bidding paddles.

As time goes on, you’ll find even more opportunities for using QR codes. For instance, some nonprofits are putting QR codes on their merchandise and giveaway items.

And PayBee will be there to help make generating and using QR codes as convenient and efficient as possible.

To learn more about how PayBee’s online tools help your charity or nonprofit organization, sign up for a free demo of PayBee’s online fundraising platform. You’ll be able to participate in a mock live auction and see how energizing our virtual events can get. You’ll also be able to ask more questions about QR codes and PayBee’s system to our team of experts at the end of the demo. Sign up today and see how PayBee can improve your donation capabilities!   

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Charity Fundraising
Nonprofit Fundraising
Hybrid Fundraising
Michael Jung