When a donor wants to donate, your organization wants to make it as easy as possible for them, right? That’s an easy one! Nonprofits know that making online donation forms easy for donors is key to your fundraising success.
But what exactly is a donation form, and what should be included in one? Is your nonprofit’s donation software optimized to drive donations? Let’s look into the elements that make for a donor-friendly form, best practices for online forms, and a helpful donation form sample to get your organization started.
When launching a fundraising campaign, the online donation form is one of the most critical components. A well-crafted donation form can make the difference between a successful campaign and one that barely gets off the ground.
Here are the top ten points to consider when creating your donation form to ensure it’s donor-friendly and effective.
1. A Brief Mission Statement
Start from the heart! Even if it’s just a couple of lines, let donors know what their funds will be fueling. This keeps your nonprofit’s purpose front and center and reminds donors why they chose to support you in the first place. This can be the organization’s mission or the campaign’s mission. Let your donors know if funds are directed toward a specific initiative.
2. Gift Amount Options
A key part of any fundraising donation form is the section where donors select how much they want to give. Consider:
- Pre-set amounts: Make it easy! Suggested amounts can guide donors and streamline the donation form request.
- Blank field: Empower your donors. Let them decide the amount they’d like to contribute. You don’t want to lose donors who want to give at a higher or lower amount than your pre-sets.
- Show the impact: Some organizations label each amount with how a donation at a certain level will impact your nonprofit cause. Showing donors your need and their impact can encourage higher donations.
3. Recurring Gift Options
Since you want to secure sustained support, include a recurring gift option. Allowing donors to give on a regular basis can significantly boost your nonprofit’s financial health and donors’ lifetime value. Include:
- An option for monthly or quarterly gifts.
- Log-in creation for donors to manage their recurring donations.
4. Tribute Gifts
Many donors like to honor a loved one or celebrate a special occasion with a tribute gift. This personal touch can resonate deeply with donors and create meaningful connections to your organization.
5. Donor Essentials
Once you have a donor, you don’t want to lose them. You’ll need to collect donor information to ensure you can keep your supporters informed and in the loop with fundraising and campaign updates. Your donation form should include:
- Basic contact information: Name, address, email, and phone.
- Privacy matters: An option to remain anonymous. Some donors prefer privacy and do not want to be recognized publicly for their donations.
- Engagement options: Opportunities to learn more, like signing up for your organization’s mailing list. Keep this limited so as not to tie up the donor for too long during the donation process.
6. Easy Payment Options
Offer multiple payment options to cater to every donor’s preference. Consider providing seamless payment options like credit cards, ACH, and digital wallets—like Apple Pay and Google Pay. Paper checks/cheques can also be included on the donation form for supporters who want to mail in payment.
7. Fee Recovery Options
Incorporate fee recovery options. This way, donors can cover transaction and/or platform fees, ensuring 100% of their donation goes to the cause. Most donors will choose to cover these fees when given the chance, making their donation go even further.
8. A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words
Include a real-life photo or photo collage related to your cause. A compelling image solidifies that emotional connection you seek with your donors, reminding them of the impact of their generosity.
9. More Ways to Connect
Offer options for the donor to stay informed or get further involved with your organization. The most common option here is “Would you like to be included on our mailing list?” Or perhaps, “Would you like to learn about volunteer opportunities for upcoming events?” It’s essential that your organization follow up with any donor who requests more information or wants to be involved. Not doing so is unprofessional and could cause the supporter to lose interest in your organization.
10. Say Thanks in Style
Once the donation is complete, redirect donors to an auto-generated thank you page and send a donation receipt. It shows instant gratitude for their generosity.
What Makes a Good Donation Page?
Now that we’ve explored what should be included in an effective donation form, it’s essential to understand the broader picture of what makes a great donation page. Your donation page needs to set the stage for donor interaction, so it must be meticulously crafted. Here are the crucial elements that define an effective donation page:
- Branding: Your donation page isn’t just another web page. It’s an extension of your nonprofit organization. By maintaining consistent branding – using familiar colors, logos, and themes – you not only enhance the visual appeal but also establish trust and recognition among your donors.
- User-Friendliness: The modern donor values convenience. They shouldn’t need to jump through hoops to make a contribution. Ensure your donation page is straightforward and intuitive and eliminates unnecessary steps. After all, a donor’s enthusiasm can wane with every extra click they have to make, often leading to donors dropping off your radar.
- Mobile Optimized: If your donation page isn’t mobile-responsive, you will likely be sidelining a significant chunk of potential donors. Ensure your donation form adjusts smoothly to mobile screens and offers mobile giving options, providing a seamless experience and encouraging mobile users to donate.
Incorporating these elements will ensure that your donation page attracts, effectively engages, and converts potential donors.
Our free donations platform checks all of the boxes for easy online donations.
Below is a comprehensive sample donation form tailored for nonprofit organizations. It offers a clear outline that organizations can easily adapt to fit their needs.
After opening the document, click File->Download to make a copy and edit as necessary.
In the world of nonprofit fundraising, donation forms play a pivotal role in driving contributions and fostering donor relationships. With the right elements, clear design, and user-centric features, your donation form can significantly amplify your campaign’s success. As you refine or create your donation form, keep the donor’s experience at the forefront, ensuring their generous act is seamless.