If you had to guess how much charitable giving grew in 2012, what would you say? What about online fundraising?
5% … 10% … 15% … 30% … more? Ok, now that I’ve got you thinking.
Based on our fundraising research, charitable giving grew by 1.7% in 2012 – nothing to write home about. One the bright side, small nonprofits grew by 7.3% and online fundraising crushed it. Check out the full charitable giving report here.
Let’s look at how online fundraising continues to take root.
1) Online Fundraising is a Growth Engine
Nonprofits have figured out how to boost online fundraising results.
Online giving grew 10.7% in 2012 compared to 2011 with large nonprofits growing by 7.2%, medium sized nonprofits growing by 14.3%, and small nonprofits growing by 11.8% on a year-over-year basis. Overall fundraising only grew 1.7%.
2) All Nonprofit Sectors Are Growing Their Online Fundraising
It’s no surprise that nonprofits continue to grow their online fundraising.
Based on supporting research we’ve found that the online channel is a great way to acquire new donors who are both younger and have a higher lifetime value. But a multichannel fundraising approach is critical to donor retention.
We’ve found that the nonprofits that deliver the greatest results have a great online donor acquisition strategy coupled with a very proactive way to move those online donors to offline giving channels. They also make use of powerful fundraising software.
3) Online Fundraising Mirrors Traditional Fundraising
Online giving peaked in December — accounting for 22.4% of 2012’s online gifts. 34% of all fundraising happens in the last three months of the year so it’s no surprise that December leads the way. January was the slowest month of the year for online giving, bringing in only 5% of the year’s online donations.
4) Online Fundraising Isn’t the Magic Bullet
In this year’s charitable giving report we found that, on average, online donations account for 7% of overall fundraising. This was an increase from 6.3% in 2011 and is nearing the record level of 7.6% from 2010.
Traditional fundraising methods such as major gifts, annual fund, checks, telephone, direct mail, and events are still king, making up 93% of all charitable giving last year.
Although online giving only accounts for 7% of total giving it’s an important channel for more than just raising funds. Like I mentioned before, the web is a great channel for acquiring new donors who are younger and have higher net worth.
Don’t be deceived by the seemingly small number.
Your Turn. How have you seen online fundraising in the nonprofit space take shape? Grow? And become more important?
About the 2012 Charitable Giving Report by Blackbaud:
The Charitable Giving Report combines findings from The Blackbaud Index of Charitable Giving and The Blackbaud Index of Online Giving to provide the largest analysis of overall and online giving trends in the nonprofit sector. The aim of the Report is to provide a benchmark for giving and help inform nonprofits’ fundraising strategies in 2013.
Data from 3,144 nonprofit organizations and more than $7.9 billion in fundraising revenue was used to produce Blackbaud’s Charitable Giving Report. The online fundraising findings are based on data from 2,581 nonprofit organizations and more than $512 million in online fundraising revenue.
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