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Online Donation Platforms for Nonprofits

Digital fundraising is more popular than ever, and for good reason: it’s quick, efficient, and bypasses the hassle of physically handling money. Thanks to the wide variety of online fundraising solutions, it is easy for nonprofit organizations of any size to raise money, handle event registration, and more online.

Considerations

When browsing online fundraising tools, it’s important to keep the following factors in mind:

  • Pricing – How much does the platform cost to use? Are their services free, or do they incur charges on a monthly basis? Do they charge donation processing fees? If so, who is responsible for the fees: the donor or the event host?
  • Security – How secure is the service’s payment processor? Will donor data like bank account information be encrypted?
  • Matching Gifts – Does the platform allow for matching gifts? If not, does it allow for integration of tools that allow for matching gifts?
  • Social Media Integration – Does the platform make it easy to integrate your fundraising strategy on popular social media platforms like Facebook?
  • Payment Options – What forms of payment does the tool allow?
  • Outreach Tools – Does the service provide outreach tools like email templates to help spread the news of any upcoming fundraising events?
  • Campaign Pages – Does the platform help you create campaign pages? How many are allowed before a price increase?

5 Online Fundraising Platforms

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to fundraisers; what matters is what tool works best for each individual organization, based on variables like their fundraising needs and fundraiser budget. Below are popular online donation platforms and online fundraising software solutions that help nonprofits reach their fundraising goals.

PayPal Giving Fund

PayPal is a digital wallet where you can make or receive payments virtually. Depending on the type of fundraiser, PayPal Giving Fund may be an appropriate platform for collecting monetary donations from potential donors.

PayPal Giving Fund is an online giving extension for charities using PayPal. It works by first allowing charities to enroll with the program. Donors can then give through PayPal or another connected platform, like eBay. PayPal will then receive these donations before sending receipts to donors. PayPal then sends these funds to the charities’ PayPal accounts.

While PayPal Giving Fund itself does not charge fees for operating costs and services, third-party partners might.

Pros

  • Easy for donors to use
  • Widely known and trusted
  • Charities can easily use after verifying their status and establishing their own PayPal account

Cons

  • Some partners may have payment processing fees

GoFundMe

GoFundMe is the massively popular crowdfunding platform that allows just about everyone to make a donation to just about any cause. That cause could be any nonprofit’s next fundraising event.

Charities can sign up on GoFundMe and go through a verification process to open a charity account on the platform. Doing so allows charities access to a dashboard full of all sorts of tools and data. Once established, charities can receive donations year-round.

To fundraise for charities, there is a transaction fee per individual donation in the United States. This fee is 2.2% + $ USD 0.30, including for debit and credit card transactions. That said, GoFundMe claims to “not have a platform fee for organizers in the US, Canada, Australia, UK, and most major European countries.”

Pros

  • User-friendly design
  • Widely known and trusted
  • No platform fee for organizers in select locations

Cons

  • Transaction fee for charities in the US

Kindful

Kindful is a customer-relationship management (CRM) system for nonprofit organizations that allow for easy integrated donor management. In other words, it is something of an all-in-one tool for nonprofit fundraising campaigns and event management. For organizations that want to streamline the entire fundraising process, this platform could be worth exploring.

Kindful supports fundraising efforts from the very beginning with its event registration and ticketing tools to post-event donor management by allowing users access to valuable donor data like donation history, engagement, and communication history.

Kindful‘s features include:

  • Event registration and ticketing tools
  • Allowing donors the option for recurring giving
  • Both crowdfunding and peer-to-peer fundraising tools
  • The option to embed donation buttons on a charity’s website
  • Integrated payment processing tools
  • Donations available through text messaging (Text-to-Give)
  • Donor management tools to foster better donor relationships

While this platform has great functionality, it isn’t free. The platform’s services are priced based on a sliding scale, with services starting at $100/month for nonprofits with 1,000 contacts. Pricing increases based on the number of contacts a nonprofit has. In addition to these monthly fees, there is a one-time setup fee of $199.

The platform also charges individual transaction fees. Kindful states that they have a “flat 2.9% + $0.30 fee on all credit and debit card transactions” and that they charge “a flat 1% + $0.30 per transaction with no monthly fee” for ACH transactions.

Pros

  • Allows for endless donation pages
  • Integrated payment tools
  • Text message donations available
  • Allows for customizable embedded donation buttons

Cons

  • Debit, ACH, and credit card processing fees
  • Monthly fees
  • One-time setup fee

Fundly

Fundly is an online platform whose mission is to make crowdfunding easy for everyone who uses their services. Both individuals and nonprofit organizations can use this platform to create fundraising event pages, manage donations, and connect to Facebook for wider outreach. Those who want a tool that has multiple donation tools in one place will likely find Fundly worth exploring.

Fundly is free “to create and share your online fundraising campaign,” although the platform will still deduct a flat 4.9% fee per donation received. There is also a credit card processing fee of 2.9% + $.30 per donation. The platform claims that it gives “automatic discounts for larger campaigns.”

Pros

  • Free to create and share campaigns
  • Allows for Facebook integration
  • Free mobile app (iOS only)

Cons

  • Flat donation fee
  • Additional credit card processing fee

Classy

Classy is a platform that helps connect nonprofits with supporters. Classy‘s software allows for the creation of donation pages, selling event tickets, converting one-time donors into recurring donors, and more.

Interested individuals will have to contact Classy in order to receive pricing details.

Pros

  • Classy donates 1% of revenue to the nonprofit sector
  • Helps connect people with causes they care about
  • Great event-management functionality for nonprofits

Cons

Disclaimers: This article does not constitute professional, legal, or financial advice. This article does not constitute a professional endorsement/review of any product, service, platform, or brand mentioned on this page. Pricing details are subject to change.

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