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4 digital fundraising channels and tips to improve appeals

September 07, 2020
A Group of businesspeople or designers work with the digital fundraising channels and tips discussed in this guide.

Technology has changed the nonprofit landscape in more ways than one. A digital strategy that keeps up with technological trends and uses multiple digital fundraising channels is now essential to the success of your nonprofit organization’s campaigns.

Use your fundraising software to analyze your donor data and segment donors into groups to target your campaigns. Then, incorporate these digital channels and easy-to-execute tips into your fundraising appeals to increase donor engagement and raise more funds.

Tip: Prioritize online giving

Online giving is the most popular modern form of giving. It’s quick, easy, accessible, and cost effective. 

To ensure you’re in the best position to accept online donations, host a donation page on your nonprofit’s website that’s simple and straightforward. Use these tips to make your donation page more effective:

  • Use your organization’s branding, including color scheme, fonts, and logo.
  • Include suggested donation amounts and pair them with tangible impacts.
  • Remind donors of your nonprofit’s purpose on the donation page itself.

Once you’ve optimized your donation page, you’re ready to add these digital fundraising channels to your strategy and share your donation page with supporters. 

4 digital fundraising channels to use

1. Email 

Email is one of the most efficient ways to communicate with your donors online. Use templates to send newsletters, thank-you letters, event invitations, and fundraising appeals. Leverage your donor data to tailor each message for your audience and personalize emails for different donor segments. Always include a clear call to action and link to your donation page to inspire immediate action from donors.

2. Mobile giving

The fact that mobile-friendly donation pages lead to 34% more donations indicates that many of your donors likely already give from their phones. Add texting to your digital fundraising strategy and launch dedicated text-to-give campaigns to make it even easier for supporters to donate from their mobile devices. 

Want to learn more about mobile giving? Download The Ultimate Guide to Mobile Giving, and go everywhere your donors go.

3. Social media

Up to 55% of users who engage with nonprofit social media accounts end up taking some kind of action like donating, volunteering, or signing a petition. Promote your donation page on your social channels to take advantage of this trend and encourage your social media followers to donate. 

Some social media platforms even allow nonprofits to fundraise directly through their sites. Bonterra Donor Engagement’s Guided Fundraising solution (formerly Network for Good) partners with Facebook on their fundraiser feature, which allows users to easily raise money for their favorite causes. 

To master the top social media sites and learn how to use them to your advantage, check out our Social Media for Nonprofits eGuide.

4. Direct mail 

While direct mail isn’t exactly a digital fundraising channel, it still deserves a place in your strategy. In a recent study, 90% of millennials reported that they trust direct mail marketing more than email. 

Plan a coordinated solicitation campaign that uses both direct mail and email blasts to increase your impact and stay front and center in your donors’ minds. To integrate the two channels, add QR codes to direct mail that lead readers to your donation page and include a link in your emails to a direct mail signup form.

Bonus digital fundraising tips 

Try a peer-to-peer campaign

Peer-to-peer programs increase awareness and donor involvement by amplifying your message through peer-driven campaigns in which your supporters leverage support from their families, friends, and coworkers to fundraise on your behalf. 

Recruit volunteers from your base of supporters, then provide your peer fundraisers with easy-to-share communication tools, such as branded fundraising pages, suggested social media posts, email templates, and information about your organization and how donations will be used.

Promote recurring gifts

Recurring donors who donate the same amount on a monthly basis often give more over time, donate at higher levels, remain committed donors longer, give additional gifts throughout the year, and actively participate or volunteer. 

Customize your online donation page to promote your recurring giving program, and ensure you include a clear option for turning any one-time donation into a monthly gift. For more on recurring gifts, download our eGuide, A Quick-Start Guide to Monthly Giving.

The bottom line

When you prioritize online giving in your fundraising strategy and build out your nonprofit’s presence on these digital channels, you’ll reach more supporters and inspire them to give. Become an even more tech-savvy fundraiser by using our checklist to integrate technology into your fundraising appeals

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