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Does your online fundraising have room for improvement?

In their recent study of 150 nonprofits, Dunham and Company/Next After concluded that many of the nation’s largest organizations are discouraging donors by making a few simple mistakes. These small – but critical – oversights are costing nonprofits billions in potential donations every year. Here are some of the most commonly made errors:

  • Not optimizing donation pages for mobile. Many nonprofits still haven’t made their donation sites easy to read on smartphones and tablets.

  • Taking too long to ask for money. 56% of organizations don’t send another ask within 90 days.

  • Slow or lack of follow-up. 37% of nonprofits don’t send emails after 30 days.

  • Once-size-fits-all messaging. 79% of organizations don’t even acknowledge recipients by first or last name – and forget about segmenting their email lists by demographics.

  • Too many clicks. 65% of nonprofit websites require visitors to click through three or more pages just to donate.

  • Lack of urgency. Just 14% of websites provided convincing reasons to give “now.”

  • No further action encouraged. 63% of organizations did not ask any more of their donors – failing to establish a lasting relationship with them.

According to the study, the ten organizations that provided the best online experiences received about 25% more money, leading to a resounding conclusion: the extra effort and investment really are worth it. To beat the statistics, consider these key points about prospective and current supporters:

  • Donors give because they want to help. Keep them updated on their impact and they’ll be compelled to give again, possibly for years to come.

  • Complicated donation pages will be abandoned. Too many clicks, too many steps or too much information = no donation.

  • Don’t treat a donation as a one-time action. Encourage monthly giving and offer other actions such as sharing, signing a petition, learning more about the cause or joining the mailing list.

  • Web users are busy, so get to the point! Make your asks urgent by using words like “now” and “today.” And be sure to follow up in a timely fashion.

Of course, these are just the highlights! To read more about the study, click here.

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