Skip to content
We are now Bonterra

The state of SMS fundraising: 6 key stats for nonprofits

November 15, 2021
A woman sits on a couch holding her mobile phone, about to participate in nonprofit SMS fundraising.

When it comes to launching a fundraising campaign, every dollar counts. And with the rise of mobile technology, SMS fundraising has become a popular method to collect donations quickly and efficiently. By allowing supporters to donate directly from their mobile devices with just a few taps, nonprofit organizations can reach more donors than ever before. 

In this guide, we’ll explore SMS fundraising in more detail and provide key insights that every organization should be aware of.

What is SMS fundraising? 

SMS fundraising, otherwise known as text-to-give or text-to-donate, refers to the process of using text messaging as a means of soliciting donations for a charitable cause. This fundraising method has risen in popularity due to its convenience, cost-effectiveness, and broad reach. 

SMS fundraising typically involves sending a message to a list of potential donors with a call-to-action to make a donation, which can then be processed through a mobile payment system. 

Why is SMS fundraising important? 

SMS fundraising is an important fundraising tool for nonprofits seeking to broaden their reach and make their donation process more accessible to supporters. With the widespread use of mobile phones, reaching potential donors through text messaging is easier than ever before. 

Additionally, SMS fundraising provides donors with a seamless and user-friendly mobile donation experience, allowing for quick, on-the-go donations. This can ultimately help increase donor engagement and satisfaction with the organization, leading them to continue engaging in the future.

6 SMS fundraising stats to inspire your next campaign

The following statistics underline the importance of adopting an SMS fundraising strategy. As you explore each of these insights, consider how your organization can use SMS to succeed in an increasingly digital world.

1. More than half of nonprofit website traffic comes from users on mobile devices.

Studies show that 57% of users arrive at nonprofit websites on mobile devices. This is critical to observe and take note of when considering implementing a text donation strategy for your nonprofit. One important question to ask is whether your organization’s website is optimized for mobile devices to provide a seamless, hassle-free experience for your supporter.

2. Mobile-friendly donation forms yield 34% more donations.

As this trend will likely continue to rise, nonprofits must ensure that donation forms are optimized and mobile-ready as well. If your donation forms and pages work well on mobile devices, it can drastically improve mobile fundraising conversions and revenue.

3. The average donation size for SMS fundraisers is $107.

Nonprofits should be sure to take notice of the impact that mobile users have when it comes to donation value and overall revenue. This stat suggests that there is an opportunity for nonprofits to plan and build a strategy around SMS fundraising.

4. Nonprofit text message audiences grew by 26% in 2020, the same percentage as in 2019.

SMS fundraising audiences are seeing a steady trend in growth. The combination of the potential giving power and growing audience size signals that mobile audiences, while yet to be a fully tapped source of revenue generation, are worth investing in.

5. Mobile giving donations have increased by 205% since 2018. 

This stat proves that more and more people are donating through their mobile devices. While having an SMS fundraising strategy may not yet be considered “standard,” it is certainly heading in that direction due to these results. 

6. SMS messages have a 98% open rate, compared to just 20% for email.

According to a recent study, mobile open rates for both fundraising and advocacy messages are high, often outperforming other digital channels. That’s due in part to the fact that donors can immediately see a text message notification on the home screen of their mobile device.

Launch your own SMS fundraising campaign

It’s clear that launching an SMS fundraising campaign can be a highly effective method for nonprofits to raise funds and engage with supporters. To launch your own campaign, identify your target audience and ensure that they are mobile users. Next, craft an effective subscription opt-in message and disseminate it across your marketing channels. Then, partner with a text-to-give provider that will enable you to accept donations via text message and reach a wider audience than ever before. 

Ready to Get Started?

  • Nonprofits
  • Fundraising ideas