As you know, fundraising takes patience. It’s a lot of work to reach potential supporters, engage them, and encourage them to support you long-term. But that doesn’t mean you can’t raise more money now by making it easier to give!
Yes, we often don’t see the results of our hard work until months down the line. That’s part of the nature of working in nonprofit development. And while it’s critical to think about how what you’re doing now will pay off months and years later, it’s nice to make some changes that yield more immediate results.
So, here are four things you can start doing right now to raise more money and continue making the world a better place.
1. Cut the clutter.
We know you have a lot to say. From the need for funds and the stories of those you serve, to details about how different initiatives further your mission, it’s hard to touch on all the main points and keep audiences engaged!
But less is more, especially when it comes to making the ask.
So, stay focused in appeal letters and other solicitations. And put emphasis on explaining exactly how a donor’s gift will be used to make a difference.
Do you have a lot of information about your initiatives on your donation page? Well, it might be time to cut some content!
You don’t need to convince someone to give again when they arrive on this page. They’ve already heard your message and want to make a difference. So, concentrate on making it as easy as possible for them to do it.
And it’s not just about the amount of content you share either. Being simple means avoiding cluttered language and terms your donors are unfamiliar with. So, keep your writing at a sixth-grade reading level, so it’s easy for donors to get the point and move forward with their donation.
READ MORE: Let’s talk about your online donation page.
2. Elevate your CTAs.
You already know you need a straightforward and engaging call-to-action to inspire your audience.
But it’s not enough to just be obvious. In fact, you can raise more money when your call-to-action feels more relevant to your goal. So, connect the asks in your appeal letters and reply cards to something tangible. This will help donors understand how their donation makes an immediate impact.
“A donation of $50 ensures a delicious Thanksgiving meal for a family in your community.”
And don’t forget to apply the same principle to clickable buttons in your email appeals and on your website.
It’s important to remind donors what they are really doing with their money. Even “Join the Cause” or “Do Your Part” will generate more clicks than a simple “Donate.”
READ MORE: Why your nonprofit’s call-to-action doesn’t work.
3. Let them pay their way.
Accommodating donor preferences by accepting several forms of payment will make it easy to give, so you can raise more money and change the world. After all, not everyone will be comfortable putting their credit card information into a website they just discovered.
And yes, it’s important to build relationships and trust with donors over time. So, don’t alienate supporters who want to make a difference but would prefer the security of using a third party to complete the transaction.
You can help donors feel more secure and make it easy to give by offering processing through PayPal, Apple Pay, Google Pay, and other similar services.
And there are other options available as well. For example, have you considered if a text-based giving campaign may be the right fit for your organization?
Or, if you find you don’t have many of the tools you need, Facebook’s suite of fundraising tools might make it easier for you to find, engage, and secure support from new donors. However, you will need to find a way to encourage these supporters to opt-in to your mailing list.
Remember, a page like or comment is not permission to send appeals and other communications, even if you can find a follower’s email address!
READ MORE: Are you accommodating donor preferences?
4. Make it monthly.
Securing a second gift from a new donor is one of the biggest challenges for nonprofits across the board.
And while monthly giving programs are really a long-term strategy, you can act now and set yourself up to raise more down the road!
After all, you don’t need to have everything figured out right away to launch a recurring gift program! Start small by determining if your systems can process monthly donations. If so, include an “I’d like to make this a monthly gift” option on your checkout form.
You can build your program up as you go, with a proper brand, automated emails, additional communications, and refined internal processes.
But just because you don’t have every piece in place doesn’t mean you can’t make it easy to give now. And what’s easier than allowing a donor to “set and forget” a monthly donation so they can continue making an impact each month?
READ MORE: Building monthly giving into your fundraising strategy.
Look for the next step.
Now that we’ve shared some steps you can take today that will make it easy to give, we can return to an important point we touched on earlier in this post.
The most successful nonprofits communicate with their donors in a way that brings them closer to the cause.
They show exactly how their work makes a difference and how each donor makes their work possible.
Remember, a donor and a nonprofit are just two entities with the same goal in mind. They both need each other to make a difference in the world. Nonprofits who understand how to grow these relationships have more loyal donors, raise more money, and make a bigger impact.
These four tips will make it easier for your supporters to give. They will certainly yield short-term fundraising results, but they aren’t focused on building relationships. And they are not enough to sustain a substandard fundraising program on their own!
Everything we talked about in this blog post can help. But a word of warning – you might be treating symptoms and not finding a cure if you’re constantly looking for a quick way to fix downward trends or that elusive “magic bullet.”