Giving in an Online World

Giving in an Online World

September 24th, 2009

by Angela White

At a recent training session that I conducted with my colleague, Dan, in Bloomington, we were discussing online giving as one important tool in the proverbial fundraising toolbox. We were discussing why people give online. The biggest indicators of why are the ease of the transaction and the timeliness (open 24/7).

One young woman in the room said that she would never make a gift if she had to write a check and find a stamp. She simply doesn’t operate in a world that writes checks and mails bills. She does all of her banking and bill paying online and chooses to conduct her charitable giving in the same manner.

What are you experiencing in online giving? We know that there is a great opportunity to expand in this area, just as consumer purchases have expanded in the online market. However, you do have to drive prospective donors to your webpage. Is this a part of your ongoing development efforts?

Finally, how do we think about online giving when asking for a gift in person? Have you ever asked for a gift in person and then had the donor fulfill your request via an online contribution rather than mailing in a pledge card with a check? As a person who does a lot of her shopping online, I find that I shop online to save time. However, if translated to online giving, does this begin to threaten our ability to build relationships with donors? Let me know your thoughts.

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