The data is clear that maximizing recurring donations is the greatest opportunity for fundraising growth for nonprofit organizations and churches.
Here are some data points you should consider:
- Recurring donors have a life-time value of between 4 to 11 times greater than one-time donors depending on the size of the organization.
- Monthly donors give 40-55% more than those who only give once in a year.
- Recurring donors are retained beyond their first year of giving at more than twice the rate of first-time donors and four times more likely to be giving 10 years later.
- Donors who give in smaller amounts more often are happier than donors who give larger amounts less frequently.
It’s a no brainer to create a monthly giving program, yet many organizations do not set-up recurring options for their donors.
Here are some tips to build and maintain a monthly giving program that avoids the dreaded churn.
How to boost fundraising efforts by an average of 25%
Imagine you are a first-time donor who has just given $10.
Immediately after you have given, you are prompted with an ask to give that $10 on a monthly basis.
If you do so, you will receive a piece of memorabilia from the organization. You probably might think that’s pretty cool and will agree to give monthly.
That prompt is called a Monthly Recurring Upsell.
When looking at building a culture of monthly giving, you often want a good excuse to ask donors to give monthly.
A great way to do that is to build a a membership program.
Many people want to be a part of something and an annual push for your membership program is a great way to cultivate monthly giving. Organizations will often offer special conference calls with their leader or limited-time giveaways to encourage memberships.
You can also mix it up with a variety of membership levels depending on someone’s gift amount. One way this is done is by using donation tiers (bronze, silver, and gold membership levels).
As you’re developing your program, you should consider testing different imagery and content to see what performs the best. To do so, it’s important to use a platform where you can create an unlimited number of donation pages easily without needing to know any code. With Anedot, you can do just that.
How to end monthly churn
After you acquire a monthly recurring donor, it’s important that you do everything in your power to prevent that person from cancelling their donation.
There will always be some people who can no longer afford to give, but many recurring donors simply forget to update their information.
Here are the two best ways to prevent donor churn:
Use a tool that reduces monthly churn
Anedot has a built-in automatic credit card updater. We work with the credit card companies to automatically update the credit card numbers and expiration dates for expiring cards.
If a credit card cannot be automatically updated, we send them an automated email to update their information in a simple way.
This ensures that someone does not accidentally churn by forgetting to update their information.
We have found that many donors who have an expiring payment method actually do want to keep their recurring commitment.
The number one complaint you hear from donors is that you “only ask them for money.” This is especially true for someone who is already giving to your organization on a regular basis.
Communicate other topics with your donors to avoid giving the impression that you are only interested in money. Use your email newsletters and social media posts to go beyond money. Talk about the mission of the organization, the work you are doing, who you are helping, and other positive stories.
Starting is the key
Whether you use Anedot or another platform, if you’re working with a nonprofit organization, you should have a recurring giving program.
The key is to define your ask, the benefits the donor will receive, and constantly communicating with those donors with non-monetary asks to keep them engaged and prevent churn.
If you’re just getting started, we would love to work with you! We have no set-up fees, no monthly fees, no contracts, and provide a simple way for you to accept recurring donations whether that be through credit card, Apple Pay, PayPal, or e-check.