How to Increase Your Online Donations

Once again I’ll be presenting at The Raise More Together Summit running from January 27-29th! This round, I’ll be teaching The 7 Must-Haves for Your Website. In addition to my session, there will be presentations, workshops and live panel discussions from 55+ fundraising experts. Jess Campbell, the creator of the summit, put together this guest blog post below to give you a little sampling of what to expect at the summit. 

Raising money online can feel trickier than it actually is. Here are four ways to help simplify your strategy and make giving online donations to your nonprofit organization as easy as 1, 2, 3. 


#1 – Prime your donor audience. Think about how big production companies like Disney and Pixar plan promotional content when they have a new movie coming out. More times than not, they are showing you a preview in the theater the summer before the movie is even released. They have billboards, commercials, and even little toys getting dished out in Happy Meal boxes at McDonald’s. They are so good at priming their audience, that by the time the movie comes to town — they will literally have people waiting in line (sometimes overnight!) to buy a ticket. Why? Because they’ve warmed their audience up! Take a page from their book and do that with your donors as well. Before and after a heavy asking season, keep the communication up by nurturing your audience with impact, stories, behind-the-scenes content and more. 


#2 – You have to ask. I know that sounds simple, but you’d be surprised at how passive nonprofit fundraisers are when it comes to asking for money. Wondering who you should be asking for donations? Start with the people closest to the heartbeat of your organization. Think: board members, past donors and volunteers. Pull a list of everyone who gave in 2019, but not 2020. Reach out to them, tell them you miss them, and then invite them to make a donation (again). 


#3 – Make giving easy. When was the last time you counted the clicks it takes to make a donation online to your nonprofit organization? If it’s more than 2 or 3 — you are asking your donor to do way too much. Make the donation button easy to find and don’t bury the forms needed to process the donation. Pro tip: double-check this process on a mobile device since now more than ever people are giving straight from their phones.

#4 – Say thank you. The number one way to get a second gift is by thanking a donor for their first one. Instead of always focusing on new, new, new — focus on those donors who just made an online gift to your organization. Say thank you, write a note, create a Loom video. Whatever it is that you currently do — double it. In the words of my grandmother, “You can never say thank you enough.”

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Jess Campbell
Jess Campbell

Jess Campbell is the founder of Out in the Boons, a small shop that helps nonprofits raise more money online and in-person. She is a former Director of Development, a mama and wife. She is a Scorpio, Enneagram 3 and the older sister of 3 brothers, which should tell you everything you need to know about her! Come hang out on IG! @outintheboons_.