Reinventing Donor Relationships – A New Online Giving Study | npENGAGE

Reinventing Donor Relationships – A New Online Giving Study

By on Dec 10, 2010


A new study from Network for Good and TrueSense Marketing isn’t focused on the number of online gifts, but rather the online giving experience and how it impacts donor behavior overall. We know that donors that have a connection to an organization online have a greater propensity for giving more and more often. Likewise, this was revealed in our recent holiday giving report showing that online donors intend to donate more than the average holiday giver ($378 vs. $281). There is too much goodness in this study to cover in one blog post, so I encourage you to read the full report  to dig deeper into the key study findings that include:

  • Just as the strength of the donor-charity relationship heavily influences offline giving, the online giving experience has a significant impact on donor loyalty, retention and gift levels. Small improvements to the online experience can make a big difference in donations.
  • Giving on social networks is significant, but donor loyalty is highest on charity websites that build strong connections with donors. Personality matters on these websites: The loyalty factor for donors acquired through generic giving pages is 66.7% lower than for donors who give via charity-branded giving pages.
  • Analysis of cumulative online giving (i.e., giving added up over time) via different pages powered by Network for Good shows that donors who gave via charity websites started at the highest level and gave the most over time. Those who used giving portals started lower and gave less over time. Those who used social giving opportunities gave the least initially and added little afterward.
  • Recurring giving is a major driver of giving over time and should be strongly encouraged in the giving experience.
  • Online giving spikes during the month of December and large-scale disasters. During disasters, donors are more likely to consider new giving options, while in December, they’re more likely to give based on relationships with the charities.
  • A third of all online giving occurs in December, and 22% of annual giving happens in the last two days of the year. Online giving (by dollars) on December 31 is concentrated between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. in each time zone.
  • Online giving happens largely between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. on weekdays. People give during work hours. There’s even a drop in giving during the noon hour.

The full study and accompanying data, including stand-alone charts, are available at


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