Whether you’re accepting donations with text-to-give software or using standard donation pages to receive funds, you can promote matching gifts to donors right alongside your donation requests. However, you’ll need to enlist the help of an intuitive matching gift database if you want to truly make the most of the “two-for-one deal” of the fundraising world.
To help you get started with the right matching gift software, we’ll be going over the following topics in this handy guide:
- The Basics of Matching Gift Databases
- The Importance of Matching Gift Databases
- How Donors Use a Matching Gift Database
- What to Look For In a Matching Gift Database
- Our Top Matching Gift Database Pick: Double the Donation!
By incorporating matching gifts into your digital fundraising strategy, there’s no telling how much your nonprofit can increase fundraising revenue.
The Basics of Matching Gift Databases
A matching gift database is a collection of corporate matching gift programs. The best matching gift databases house information about thousands of companies’ matching gift programs. This typically includes:
- Minimum and maximum amounts that the company will match
- Matching donation ratios
- Employee/retiree/spouse eligibility
- Types of nonprofits that the company will donate to
- Links to matching gift request forms
- Contact information of the person in charge of the company’s program
There is a ton of data available for a wide variety of businesses, and a matching gift database can help simplify data management by compiling all the information in one place.
Takeaway: Matching gift databases contain a plethora of information about corporate matching gifts and thousands of companies’ program criteria and guidelines.
The Importance of Matching Gift Databases
Matching gift databases are essential because they provide donors with the most comprehensive information about their employer’s matching gift program in the simplest way possible, which makes it easy to double donations and earn even more revenue.
Without a comprehensive matching gift database, your donors might have to sift through web pages or internal company files to find the information they need to submit a matching gift request.
Luckily, matching gift software providers like Double the Donation make the process easier for your donors and your organization. Matching gift databases like these take the hassle out of searching for the specific data a donor needs, making it easier for donors to submit matching gift requests. In the end, this means that your nonprofit receives extra donations even more quickly!
Takeaway: Matching gift databases are important because they make it easier for donors to find the information they need to submit matching gift requests—which means more money going toward nonprofit missions.
How Donors Use a Matching Gift Database
Though the process may vary depending on the matching gift database at hand, let’s look at the basic steps using Double the Donation’s tools as an example.
Step #1: Donors search for their employer in an embedded company search tool.
Donors looking to make a donation can research their employer using a matching gift database tool. This resource is often embedded within the organization’s donation form, dedicated matching gift web page, “ways to give” page, and more.
Once a donor reaches the tool, they type their employer’s name in the search box and select the right company from search results.
While some matching gift software requires accurate and complete spelling of businesses’ names, Double the Donation’s database accounts for common spelling errors and leverages a smart autocomplete functionality. This means it’s easy for donors to find the information they’re looking for and secure a match for your organization, even if their employer has tricky spelling or name variations or manages their program through an alternative company.
Step #2: The matching gift database populates with their employer’s matching gift policies.
Once the donor selects their employer from the company search tool, the matching gift database will automatically fill in company-specific matching gift program information. This should include donation policies and eligibility criteria such as qualifying employees and organizations, matching gift ratios, submission deadlines, donation minimums and maximums, and more.
For employers that don’t offer online forms, the database might also provide the user with instructions on how to request a match by contacting an HR representative at the company.
Takeaway: A matching gift database should be easy for donors to use and self-explanatory, even for those not familiar with matching gift initiatives, while strategically sending donors towards their next steps in the matching gift process.
What to Look For In a Matching Gift Database
Now that you understand the importance of an effective database, recognize that not all matching gift databases are created equal! To find the one that will help you get the biggest bang for your nonprofit’s buck, look at the five following qualities:
Does the matching gift database prioritize electronic forms?
When donors are researching their company’s matching gift program, they want to be able to access the electronic form or PDF they need to submit a request.
If a matching gift database merely tells them to retrieve the form from their HR department, the donor might get frustrated or forgo the process altogether.
Instead, make sure that you look for a matching gift database that provides the electronic forms that your donors will need to make requests.
Of course, not every company has its matching gift paperwork online, but your matching gift database should have the online forms of those companies with electronic submission processes.
Is the matching gift database complete and easy for donors to understand?
Donors should easily be able to find and understand all of the information that your matching gift database provides. If donors don’t know what to do with the data it produces, your nonprofit will miss out on matching gift opportunities.For example, the following information should be made readily available and easy to comprehend:
- Matching gift ratio
- Maximum and minimum eligible amounts
- Types of nonprofits the corporation matches donations to
- Guidelines on how to submit a request
These details help donors determine if their gifts are eligible to be matched and what steps they need to take to submit a request. The simpler it’s laid out for individuals to consume, the more likely donors will complete the process.
How often does the matching gift database get updated?
Some matching gift databases were put together years ago and haven’t been touched since. The information is now outdated and irrelevant. Look for a matching gift database that regularly updates its records and keeps up with matching gift changes, big and small.
It’s important to note when companies update their matching gift programs. For example, many companies make changes in September or October to prepare for the new year of giving. Here’s what the experts have to say:
According to Double the Donation, “Some companies modify their matching gift programs on a whim or tie their benefit plan changes to a fiscal year rather than a calendar year. However, the majority of companies finalize their benefit plans in early September/October of each year. It’s during this time that changes to the core structure of each company’s matching gift program are typically outlined.”
Make sure you ask when the matching gift database you’re considering gets updated, so your donors get the most relevant information possible. This is especially important when companies expand their matching gift programs in response to current events because a good database will be up-to-date with that information as well!
Can donors submit new companies and request updates within the matching gift database?
Your donors might work for companies with matching gift programs that aren’t listed in a matching gift database yet. Or, there may be existing information that needs to be updated.
If that’s the case, you’ll want to make sure you select a matching gift database that allows donors to submit a new company or directly request updates.
One effective way you can invite donors to do this is through ongoing communications from your nonprofit that direct donors to your matching gift database.
Your organization can engage with donors, encourage them to search the database, and invite them to request updates if needed.
What is the matching gift database’s coverage by market?
Your nonprofit will undoubtedly need the most comprehensive matching gift database possible. This way, you’re less likely to miss out on matching gift opportunities.
It’s important that your supporters are able to find their employers listed if they are, in fact, match eligible. Otherwise, they won’t know to submit a request!
Let’s use Double the Donation’s matching gift database as an example. In the United States, more than 26.8 million individuals are match eligible through 24,000+ companies. Currently, the database covers over 99% of these individuals, which means they are likely to find their employers listed in that matching gift search tool. Further, Double the Donation provides users with access to matching gift submission forms for more than 80% of those companies!
Likewise, Double the Donation is the only database provider with dedicated functionality in Canada, covering 93-99% of match-eligible individuals.
Takeaway: Your matching gift database should have a variety of features, all designed to make raising more through corporate giving as easy as possible. Make sure that you learn more about (or get a demo of) the service you’re signing up for before you buy!
Our Top Matching Gift Database Pick: Double the Donation!
Double the Donation is the industry-leading matching gift database and end-to-end matching gift fundraising tool built to simplify and track the matching gift submission process and drive additional revenue effectively.
The best part? 360MatchPro by Double the Donation automates the entire process, so you don’t have to do much to get the doubled donations rolling in.
How Double the Donation’s Matching Gift Database Works
Double the Donation’s matching gift tools aid nonprofits in boosting matching gifts both during and after the donation process.
First, using an embedded plugin, which is a core feature of Double the Donation’s matching gift database solution, donors can easily access information stored in the database to find matching gift information from their companies. From there, supporters can immediately begin submitting their match requests using the forms and instructions provided by the database.
Taking things even further, Double the Donation’s software also scans donor information provided during the donation process, searching specifically for matching gift eligibility. Once identified, the software triggers customizable emails to these donors based on their likely match eligibility, encouraging them to take the appropriate next steps to submit a matching gift request.
From there, your organization can track the progress of match requests using Double the Donation’s top-of-the-line data-tracking capabilities, measure performance, and make improvements to your strategies to raise more.
Benefits of 360MatchPro by Double the Donation
Benefits of using Double the Donation’s matching gift database include:
- Identifying more opportunities for matching gift revenue. 360MatchPro by Double the Donation helps automatically collect matching gift eligibility from donors via email domains, within donations forms, on confirmation screens, and through email follow-ups. The more match-eligible opportunities you uncover, the more match requests your donors will successfully submit.
- Driving more matches to completion from form submission to corporate payment. Immediately direct donors to their matching gift forms following the donation process. Then, provide the right information to the right donors at the right time with customized emails based on match eligibility. This type of targeted follow-up drives more completed match requests than ever, boosting your matching gift revenue as a result.
- Spending more time on top opportunities rather than routine follow-ups. When you automate your matching gift outreach, you don’t have to spend time chasing small dollar-value matching gifts. Double the Donation will also flag your highest-value opportunities, allowing your team to personalize follow-ups to the most valuable match-eligible donations.
If you don’t have enough staff, time, or energy to focus on matching gift outreach (or simply would rather devote those resources to mission-related tasks), Double the Donation’s matching gift database and automation software will be a valuable addition to your toolkit. Your donors will appreciate the seamless and user-friendly process, as well as the wealth of information Double the Donation can provide.
Takeaway: Double the Donation is the perfect matching gift database solution for nonprofits of all shapes, sizes, and missions. The database is updated regularly, and donors are able to look up nearly every detail about their employer’s matching gift program with ease.
Hopefully, you know more about matching gift software than you did before. Don’t forget to do your research before you start shopping for a matching gift database, and you’ll be all set to start doubling your donations in no time!
For more information regarding nonprofit matching gifts and software, check out our top additional resources:
- Double the Donation’s Daily Demo — Amp up your fundraising efforts with the help of matching gift tips, tricks, and tools! Check out a demo from Double the Donation to learn more.
- 360MatchPro’s Matching Gifts: The Expert’s Guide — Read up on more invaluable matching gift information with 360MatchPro’s guide to promoting, managing, and tracking nonprofit matching gifts.
360MatchPro’s Top Matching Gift Companies — Partnering with an established corporate matching gift program is a surefire way to rack up online donations. Get started with 360MatchPro’s top matching gift companies.