Charities: How to use technology to increase donations

Fundraising managers are all too aware that it is getting harder to win over consumers and get those vital donations. Successful charities have already started streamlining their admin processes and simplifying donations as a means to ensure maximum funds are going straight to their cause.

Understanding your donors is a great step forward in increasing your donations, but expanding into the digital area and using technology is where your real opportunity lies.

Charities have realised they have to jump on the digital wave and make the most of modern technologies to secure their fundraising success in the future. With mobile and tablet use on the rise, charities need to appeal to these new tech savvy donors. This means competing on modern donor's terms and taking online fundraising seriously.

How to use technology to increase donations

Having mobile friendly websites, blogs and a social media presence will ensure your charities good work is at everyone's fingertips. Internet browsing is the most common smartphone function (28% of all web traffic is on a mobile*) and technology savvy donors are an audience in waiting. You can tap into an individual's everyday lifestyle, enabling increasingly seamless opportunities for generosity. People want to donate money, so make it easy for them. Catch their attention when they are in the moment, browsing the internet, within a second they can be on your website with a donate now option in front of them.

By embracing technology, you can increase your range of donation options to appeal to more donors, more often. Donors can make donations anywhere. Charities can use web and mobile technologies to make giving more convenient, more social and more compelling. Harness the power of convenience. Donors will also appreciate the instant response and instant gratification of being able to donate on the go.

TIP: Capture the donor's email address so you can encourage repeat donations now that you know who they are.

*Source: http://bgr.com/2013/11/08/mobile-devices-internet-traffic-q3-2013/

Add some variety to your technology mix  

You can increase your digital presence by using video and email to engage with your donors. You can create content and options that donors can access with their smartphone or tablet. This can be videos about your charity's good work and success stories or emails keeping people up to date with fundraising goals, or a blog where donors can post comments and participate. This will help you build and maintain a relationship with your donors and get them involved with your charity. It will also build goodwill and get people talking about what you do. This word of mouth will lead new donors back to your site, keen to donate and make a difference as well.

Gen Y have grown up with a smartphone in the palm and earphones in the ears. So use this to reach out to them, and give them content they can consume on the go, anywhere, anytime.

Turn one off donors into repeat donors

Now that you are engaging regularly with donors, sharing heartfelt content and keeping them informed of your charity's good work, you can encourage repeat donations.

Invite your donors to give small amounts regularly using a direct debit facility. World Vision are exceptional at this method, encouraging small payments in line with the donor's own salary cycle. Many charities are moving to this concept of smaller, more frequent donations as a way of increasing fundraising. A direct debit facility means donors have the convenience of donating every month and you have the certainty of funds being donated. Donors will appreciate a range of options when it comes to making donations especially ones that fit in with their busy lifestyles.

Get the technology working for you

Find out more online donations insight in the Charities ebook; Use modern technology to secure your fundraising future.