In case you haven’t noticed, there’s a rapid shift in America to giving online. A recent M+R Benchmarks 2015 Study saw an average 13% increase in online revenue for nonprofits. The sample included many of America’s largest nonprofits such as Greenpeace, American Red Cross, UNICEF, The Nature Conservancy, American Lung Association, American Heart Association and Make a Wish Foundation. Much of this came from asks by email. According to the study, the average revenue per thousand emails sent was $40. Monthly giving online is also up by 32%.
What’s happening is that donations, like most transactions, are moving online. Despite data breeches in the news daily, people are finding it too inconvenient to not handle money online. We’re quickly switching our buying, banking and every kind of transaction to online. In 2013 the e-commerce rate grew about 14% so online giving appears to be on par with other transactions.
While the email ask is proving effective at replacing the direct mail ask, other types of online fundraising are growing at a more rapid rate. Large nonprofits that use peer-to-peer fundraising are seeing substantial increases. Paul Ghiz, Chief Strategy Officer of Global Cloud, tracked the year-over-year increase by nonprofits that raise over a million dollars a year through DonorDrive software: “We’ve seen a 69% increase on average in our two-year study of peer-to-peer online giving with large organizations that were included in our sample. The organizations that have been at it longer and have become skilled at innovative methods of peer-to-peer online fundraising are seeing an even bigger growth.” Some DonorDrive campaigns and events raise close to 100% of their dollars online.
All signs are pointing to online giving continuing to grow at a rapid rate. The biggest reason is that online transactions continue to get easier. Many transaction processes now can retain your credit card information so you don’t have to enter it in each time you give on your phone. For most of us, the convenience factor now outweighs any security concerns.