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Online Donations – 4 Tips to Increase Your Success

According to and article in Nonprofit Tech for Good, 80% of respondence said they prefer online donations. In this article I am going to share with you my experience and how you can increase your online donations.

Years ago, I was the V.P. of Public Relations and a Social Chair for the Young Professionals for Covenant House. I and other YPFCH team members used these tips to successfully raise money for the youth-oriented runaway and homeless shelter which was located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

I particularly used tip #1 and #3 very effectively and achieved great results!

1. Start soliciting for online donations two months prior to your fundraiser to increase the success rate by 43%.

Nearly 60% of nonprofits submit online donation requests less than a month before the event date. We found that applying two months in advance increases approval rates by 43%. Get those applications in early!

2. Start one month before to get the most options.

About half of the companies with online donation requests that we cataloged specified how far in advance applications need to be submitted. Out of those that specified an advance notice time, 39% of the companies require a one month notice. 23% require a two month notice.

3. Follow-up at least twice.

I signed myself up to secure breakfast, lunch, and snack donations for 400 attendees at Teach for America’s Bay Area Education Summit. In six weeks, I secured 17 sponsors, totaling $2500 worth of food. I tracked all of my communications and found that 45% of the sponsors I secured said yes after the first or second follow-ups!

I also lost a donation from a Chipotle that I secured six weeks in advance because I didn’t follow-up to remind them.

4. Pitch events with 50 or more attendees.

Events with more than 50 attendees have a 20% higher chance of getting donations. 

From the companies’ perspectives, donating products takes time, from reviewing applications to coordinating shipping and pick-up. For their time to be worth it, they want their products to reach as many people as possible. For nonprofits, this might be a good minimum threshold too because it is likely not worth spending over 10 hours filling out online donation request forms only to get 25 cupcakes for a small event. It would have been much easier to buy that at Costco for $20.

The Center for Institutional Finance wishes your organization the greatest success with your next fundraiser!

If you have any questions or need any assistance click the link to submit your request Fundraising Inquiry