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#GivingTuesday Tips: Do’s & Don’ts of Online Fundraising

#GivingTuesday Tips: Do’s & Don’ts of Online Fundraising


There’s no doubt that online fundraising is sweeping the globe as a great resource for nonprofits. Last year, nonprofits around the world collectively raised $116,000,000 on #GivingTuesday. Understanding what to do (and what not to do) can make your Giving Tuesday campaigns a hit for your nonprofit too.

DO make sure your website is updated and inviting

If you’re attracting donors to your website to make donations, don’t you want them to explore other areas of your website to know what your nonprofit is all about? To make a good impression on prospective donors, make sure your landing page is appealing and your website is updated with the latest pictures, videos, stories, and staff info.


DON’T forget to make your website compatible with mobile devices

Mobile giving is becoming increasingly popular. 17% of last year’s #GivingTuesday donations were done through a smartphone. Make sure your website runs smoothly for mobile devices so that you don’t miss out on donations.

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DO use visual media and buttons in your fundraising page

Very few people will donate to your campaign if the page has nothing but text. Pictures, videos, graphics, donate buttons, and banners are a great way to make your fundraising page personal and inviting.


DON’T display an unreasonable fundraising goal

Would you prefer to help an organization reach $1,000 or $1,000,000? Make your donors feel like their contributions are actually making a difference in your mission by displaying a modest fundraising goal.


Pro Tip: If you actually need to raise a huge amount of money, try getting several board members or dedicated volunteers to set up peer-to-peer fundraisers for your organization, each with a small fundraising goal that collectively adds up to your actual goal.


DO plan an email marketing strategy

Get the word out to all your supporters by crafting emails that are short and sweet reminding them that #GivingTuesday is coming up, how their donation can make a difference, and to encourage their peers to donate.


DON’T send the same email to all your supporters

Your supporters are very diverse, so why send the same email to each one? Send targeted emails with the right messages to your donors that resonate with them. This way, each donor is motivated to donate on #GivingTuesday because of a personal connection they’ve established with your organization. Using donor profiles is a great way to organize your targeted email marketing efforts.


DO advertise your fundraiser on social media

I’m not talking about sharing the link to your fundraising page one time. The goal of using social media is to get people excited about giving. Share the link on a weekly basis, ask staff members and the board of directors to share the post with their networks, create a Facebook event page and invite all your supporters, and Tweet updates as you get closer to reaching your fundraising goal.


DON’T refrain from using customized thank you’s

Having an automatic Thank You page after a donation is submitted is good, but sending customized Thank You emails or letters to your donors is better. Receiving a (seemingly) customized acknowledgment of a donation makes donors feel special, and may inspire them to donate to your organization on a regular basis.


DO stay in touch with your new donors

If you notice new names on your list of donors after Giving Tuesday, be sure to add their information to your donor database so that you can keep in touch with them. Start by following up a week after Giving Tuesday, thanking them again for their generosity and providing a short, personal introduction to your organization. Add their email address to your newsletter also, if you have one.


These tips can also apply to online fundraising in general. The key to having a successful online fundraiser is to put yourself in the donor’s shoes and make the process as simple and creative as possible.