How mobile devices can help with fundraising

Donors can use their mobile devices to give to charities.
Date Published
11/10/2015

Fundraising isn’t an easy task, but luckily there are plenty of tools at your disposal. The rise of mobile devices has affected every industry, including nonprofits. Mobile devices can be useful fundraising tools. The best things about smartphones and tablets is so many people have them and the instruments make it extremely easy to donate to a needy cause. While collecting donations through mobile devices is smart, you still need nonprofit software to manage the donations once they’ve come in. Here are four ways to encourage donors to use their smartphones and tablets to help support your organization’s fundraising efforts:

Utilize text donations
One of the easiest ways to get people to use their phones to make a donation is to set up text message donations. By texting a specific, short code of letters and numbers to a specific phone number, donors can make a small donation via their phone. This is an extremely easy way for nonprofits to raise the funds they need. Donations are added to the person’s phone bill.

Nonprofit Hub noted this practice can be highly successful, citing the $32 million The American Red Cross raised in one month for Haiti after a devastating earthquake hit the country. The Red Cross made 10 percent of those funds from text donations.

There are a number of different services that will conduct this type of campaign for you and set up all the technical aspects, including Sumotext, Give by Cell and Txt2Give.

Optimize your email campaigns for mobile
According to Litmus, emails are opened more often on mobile devices than they are on desktop computers. This means if your nonprofit’s email marketing campaign isn’t responsive to mobile devices, chances are your donors will never get to read them even if they wanted to.

New Media Campaigns noted that 33 percent of online fundraising comes from email, according to New Media Campaigns. Because of this, it is critical that each and every one of your donors has the ability to read the emails you send to them.

Encourage donors to use fundraising apps
There are a large number of apps for mobile devices that can make it easy for people to help with your fundraising efforts. Many apps have innovative way of allowing people who want to make a difference to make donations. Try looking up different types of apps you think your donors would be interested in. There are apps like Charity Miles, which connects sponsors to runners, walkers and bikers. The athletes raise money based on the amount of miles traveled. Then that money goes to an organization of their choice. Other options include Receipt Hog, which allows donors to sell their receipt information and then give that money to a nonprofit of their choice.

Make your site responsive
One other option for nonprofits is to simply update their website so it is responsive to the device a person uses. A website that isn’t easily viewed on a mobile device will be difficult to navigate on a smartphone or tablet. Because so many donors use their phone to view material and make online payments, your nonprofit needs to update to a responsive design.

All of these changes and additions to how your nonprofit approaches fundraising will have a positive impact, but you also need to remember that none of these will replace the need for up-to-date nonprofit fundraising software. It is difficult enough to manage all of the programs and initiatives your nonprofit is a part of without having a software tool to help keep track of everything. Nonprofit fundraising software will make keeping track of and reporting all mobile donations a simple process.

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