Stripe for Nonprofits - How Stripe Helps Nonprofits Increase Donations

Stripe for Nonprofits - How Stripe Helps Nonprofits Increase Donations

If you’re thinking about using Stripe as your nonprofit’s online payment processing solution, you may want to think again. While Stripe does have some perks for nonprofits, once you really drill down into what the processor can and can’t do and the costs involved, you may be surprised to learn that it may not be the best solution for every organization. And although we here at Paybee offer a plethora of tools that make Stripe more user friendly, we feel it's best to fully understand the positives as well as the negatives as clearly as possible so you don't end up with a solution that doesn't solve your actual needs.

When it comes to 501(c)(3) charitable organizations, Stripe does offer reduced fees for nonprofit organizations at a discounted rate of 2.2% + $0.30 per transaction for standard credit card transactions, not including American Express. Their standard fee is in itself not even the cheapest as PayPal Nonprofit’s fees are 1.99% + $0.49 for nonprofits. There are also different fee structures depending on the type of transactions you’ll need to be completed.

The company also supports over 135 currencies and over 40 different payment methods, enabling donations from virtually anywhere in the world which is definitely a plus. But if we are talking worldwide availability, they only offer their services in 46 countries at present, compared to other processors like Paypal which offer their services in over 200 countries. That means if your organization resides in a country not on their list, you're unable to open an account.

So if you’re reading this from somewhere other than the USA, you might want to check their list of countries here first to see if you’re even allowed to sign up for a Stripe account.

Another catch that Stripe has is that you must process a minimum of 80% of all your donations with them in order to be eligible for a discounted nonprofit rate, which is essentially locking you into their platform. Other services don’t require this sort of volume when offering discounts to charities. And to make things worse, when you are accepted for the discounted rate, you won’t be getting the normal list of features Stripe offers its for profit users and you’ll need to pay additional fees for normal like Stripe Radar and other premium features.

And one last thing to know before opening your account, Stripe is not as easy to use as other payment solutions. It’s actually quite techie and may require a developer or someone who knows their way around payment gateways in order to set it up correctly. many options are simply out of the box and go ones. This does mean however it is very customizable and can be configured in all sorts of ways which may be a great feature for those large organizations that need to be able to develop extremely complex payment processes.

Luckily if you do decide to go with them, PayBee makes integration and using Stripe a whole lot easier for both you and your donors right out of the box! In fact, when you open an account with us, you’ll automatically be given a Stripe account as well. We’ll also give your charity a whole slew of tools that can make Stripe a hundred times better and easier to work with for both your team and donors.

Now using Stripe isn’t all bad, there are a few reasons why you’d integrate Stripe into your processing solution. For one, they offer reporting tools that can help monitor your transactions, revenue, and other key financial metrics. They also integrate well with Google and Apple Pay, so if you’re already using either of these platforms to accept donations, Stripe may be a great option to further your reach.

Stripe offers a comprehensive Dashboard and reporting tools that enable businesses to monitor their transactions, revenue, and other key financial metrics. Businesses can also access detailed transaction data, dispute management tools, and other features to help manage and optimize their payment operations

Stripe's Nonprofit Offerings

Stripe offers several features specifically designed to benefit nonprofits once you verify your account and become a qualified charity. You can then take advantage of their lower charity rates on transactions that get processed through them and use their online donation collection forms. These forms are easy to set up and are hosted on their own platform so they are completely secure and work flawlessly and are completely free to use.

The forms can be tailored to a point in order to match your company’s branding as well as deciding what sorts of buttons and information you’d like on your pages. And the benefit of being online is that anyone with an internet connection is now a potential donor and can give with any connected device.

Their pages allow your charity to accept donation payments through credit and debit cards, digital wallets, or even bank transfers. and you have the option of including Google and Apple Pay to your pages which helps to make them a great beginner friendly alternative. If you have a developer that is familiar with APIs, there is a lot of things you can do with Stripe’s payment system.

Depending on your technical abilities, Stripe’s platform can be either a complex set of tech, or a developer’s playground. For large organizations with more complex needs or custom requirements, The company offers comprehensive suite of developer tools and documentation to match. This allows organizations to build custom donation workflows, integrate with internal systems, and extend Stripe's functionality as needed.

Stripe also gives you the ability to accept recurring donations that your donors can set up, and you will continue to receive a new donation on whatever timeline they choose. This is usually a monthly gift that over time can really add up. This is a great option that allows your donors to give without needing to think about the process again and again, and you can more accurately rely on a certain amount of funding each month.

Stripe can also integrate with popular fundraising platforms like Paybee and others as well as website builders commonly used by nonprofits. This integration allows you to do so much more with Stripe than if you’re simply using their pages on their site.

For example, when you use Paybee and Stripe combined, you’ll be able to run and host all sorts of events both off and online, while seamlessly integrating all your donation process using Stripe right from inside your Paybee dashboard. This makes running your entire organization a breeze saving countless hours of work for you and your team.

But that’s not all you can do with this pairing up. When using Stripe through PayBee, we let your nonprofit pass transaction fees onto your donors. So, when someone donates to your organization through PayBee, they can choose to cover Stripe’s processing fees themselves.

That means your nonprofit gets the full donation amount, and the donor picks up the tab for the fees separately. It's a win-win! Nonprofits get every penny of the donation, and donors have the option to help out a bit more by covering the fees. So, by teaming up with PayBee and using Stripe's services, nonprofits can save on those transaction fees and put more of their funds toward doing good in the world.

How to Qualify for Stripe's Nonprofit Rates

In order to qualify for Stripe's nonprofit rates, you must first open an account using all of your organizations details, including an email address attached to your charity. You must have an open account in order to request their reduced payment structure before contacting them.

You must also be willing to process a minimum of 80% of all the donations received for your charity (ie. not selling products or tickets, membership fees, tuition payments, ticket sales, registration fees, and auction payments) through their payment processors, and you must be willing to document that intention in the application letter you send to them asking for reduced rates.

Once you are willing to do that, you’ll need to write to them at nonprofit@stripe.com and include the following information in your letter. We’ll provide a simple email template at the end of this section to make all of this as easy as possible. Please note, the letter must come from the verified address you opened your account with in order to be considered.If you send it from any other email you application will be rejected!


  • Your EIN, or a letter from the IRS designating your 501(c)(3) status
  • Stripe account ID
  • Primary email address associated with your Stripe account
  • Written consent that more than 80% of your payment volume will be tax deductible donations.

Stripe goes through these requests on a weekly basis, so don’t expect a decision in a day. It may also take up to two weeks once you’re accepted for the new fee structure to take effect. And although it may take some time, the more you can reduce costs, the more effectively your organization can tackle their primary goals. So it’s worth the wait!

Stripe Nonprofit Verification Email Template

Here's a template that you can use to quickly apply for Stripe's reduced processing fees for nonprofits. Please use the registered email address for your Stripe account in order to verify your identity as the account holder!

To: nonprofit@stripe.com

Attention Stripe Nonprofit Team,

We would like to apply for Stripe’s reduced payment processing fees for nonprofits. Our nonprofit, [nonprofit name], registered in [country], is working with Paybee, a Stripe Partner Platform and we plan to process 80% or more of our donations through your platform as required by your company. Please find all of the attached information documenting our nonprofit status and account verification below.

  • Confirmation of our nonprofit status — [proof of nonprofit status in your country]
  • Our Stripe account ID — [your organization’s Stripe account ID]
  • The primary email address associated with our Stripe account — [email]
  • Our primary operating country — [country]

Thank you for your time on this matter and we look forward to your reply.





Comparing Stripe to Other Payment Processors

The easiest way to compare Stripe against its competitors is to layout what each company’s fees are, additional fees and payout schedules. Please find our comparison table including Stripe, PayPal Nonprofit, Braintree, Authorize.Net, GiveWP, and Razorpay, ordered from the cheapest transaction fee to the most expensive below.

Payment ProcessorTransaction FeeAdditional FeesMonthly FeePayout TimePayPal Nonprofit1.99% + $0.49NoneNoneInstant to 1 business dayStripe2.2% + $0.30NoneNone1 business dayRazorpay2% + ₹3NoneNoneT+1 (Next day)GiveWP2.5% + $0.30NoneNoneDependent on payment gatewayBraintree2.9% + $0.30NoneNone2-3 business daysAuthorize.Net2.9% + $0.30$25 monthlyNone2-3 business days

Always verify the current fee structure and terms directly with the payment processor as they may change over time.

There are of course other factors to keep in mind like how easy is it to use each of these solutions, how well they integrate with your current workflow and software systems, and what feature and tool sets each company offers. Once you have narrowed down which companies you may want to work with, you'll need to look at each one individually to see if they will match your organization's needs and requirements.

FAQs on Stripe for Nonprofits

What types of donations can be processed through Stripe?

Stripe supports various payment methods, including credit/debit cards, digital wallets like Apple Pay and Google Pay, checks and ACH bank transfers, making it versatile for accepting donations online.

How does Stripe handle recurring donations?

Nonprofits can easily set up recurring donation options through Stripe, allowing donors to contribute on a regular basis automatically. This feature helps nonprofits maintain a steady stream of funding without the need to constantly remind your donors it’s time to donate again.

Can Stripe integrate with my nonprofit's CRM?

That depends on which CRM software your organization is using, but there’s a good chance it will work as Stripe is very developer friendly. Just be aware it may be necessary to hire a developer to integrate Stripe into your workflow which of course comes with additional costs.

What support does Stripe offer to nonprofit organizations?

While technically not nonprofit support, Stripe offers many types of support to all of their users. They have a great documentation website specifically for commonly asked questions as well as email, chat and phone support.

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Bill Allen

Bill Allen is an expat that has been travelling the world for the past 25 years. He received his MA in writing in New York too long ago to remember, but has been writing on all sorts of subjects far varied publications ever since. When he isn't writing he enjoys meditating and working on his own website, UpscaleDrinks.com. Feel free to connect with him any time.