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Convert website visitors into donors in 5 easy steps

November 17, 2021
This website visitor could be converted into a supporter of your nonprofit if you follow these 5 steps.

To convert visitors into donors, nonprofit organizations need to optimize every aspect of their websites. From landing on your homepage to clicking the final payment button, each element in the donation process needs to encourage donors to take the next step. 

While emotional appeals may be what inspires a potential donor to give, even the most motivated donors need a straightforward, convenient checkout process to make their gift final. 

Here are a few ways you can instill confidence in your website’s visitors and encourage them to take the leap to become donors. 

1. Share reviews

For first-time donors who may still be unfamiliar with the ins and outs of your nonprofit, ratings or reviews can go a long way in building confidence. When visitors see that others have already given, they are more likely to put their trust in your organization as well. Peer influence is powerful, so try posting positive messages you’ve received from donors and including donation thermometers on your donation page to show visitors that your nonprofit has a healthy base of supporters. 

Donors also appreciate recommendations from trusted organizations in the nonprofit space. If you have endorsements from third-party websites like Charity Navigator, Guidestar, and the Better Business Bureau, including their logos on your website will give donors peace of mind that your organization is known for its integrity. To get  permission to add these organizations’ logos, register with them and fill out any applications they require to receive approval. 

2. Use a trusted merchant processing service

Ensure donors know their sensitive payment information will be safe by using a trusted payment processing service. Allow donors to choose from several payment methods as well, such as credit and debit card, Apple Pay, and PayPal. 

To make donating again easy, give donors the option to have their payment information saved. Their data will be stored securely and can be entered into your donation form in seconds the next time they give. 

3. Keep the message clear throughout the checkout process

A straightforward checkout process will minimize donor abandonment, ensuring more supporters see their gift through to the end. The simpler you can make your checkout process, the better. 

Ensure your message is in front of your donors as they go through the process, reminding them why they’re giving and keeping their emotions engaged. Use the same inspiring messages in your marketing materials that encourage supporters to give, and even consider pairing these messages with images that reinforce the importance of their gift.

4. Prompt donors with suggested giving amounts that relate to concrete impact

Donors will be more motivated if they are able to visualize where their money is going. Make suggestions for giving amounts and pair each amount with specific items or actions that that gift will go toward. For example, you might share that “A gift of $50 provides school supplies for a year for five young girls.”

5. Continue the experience with a cadence of follow-ups

You can convert a one-time donor into an ongoing, loyal supporter by continuing to provide a positive donor experience beyond their initial gift. Follow up with a thank you letter that communicates what donors can expect next. Periodically send follow-up emails that keep them informed of program updates, and invite them to upcoming events or volunteer opportunities. 

By focusing on building a lasting relationship and crafting an exceptional donor experience, you can enjoy ongoing support from those who give.

Earn more with a top-notch website

Your website is one of your nonprofit’s most important fundraising tools, and a donation page that prioritizes your visitors’ experience, instills trust, and reminds them why they were motivated to give can earn you more donations. 

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    Donor Engagement
  • Nonprofits
  • Digital communications & marketing