The Power of Online Donations

the power of online donations

Over $1.2 million dollars is spent online every 30 seconds. With this level of activity, your organization has incredible opportunities to take advantage of online fundraising.

This post will walk you through:

  • Rising Trends in Online Giving
  • Strengthening your Organization for the Future
  • Unique Online Fundraising Opportunities

Paired with traditional fundraising strategies, online donations have the power to supercharge donations.

The Rising Trend in Online Giving

Over 1.46 million people made purchases online in 2015. This number is set to increase to 2.07 million in 2019, according to Statista. The internet and its ability to process payments has impacted how companies operate, including nonprofits.

Online donations grew in 2015 from 12% to 19% according to the M+R Benchmark Study. This massive growth shows that year over year more people prefer the ease of online transactions.

This same Benchmark Study reports that a nonprofit raises roughly $0.65 of revenue per website visitor. For every 1,000 visitors, a nonprofit can raise roughly $650, illustrating the massive incentive to optimize and grow your organization’s online presence to increase donations, overall aiding with your group’s mission.

Strengthening your Organization for the Future

47% of millennials made an online donation within the past two years. Gen X and Boomers aren’t far behind, at 40% and 42% respectively. As we saw in the previous section, with online giving trending up, these numbers are only set to increase in the coming years.

While the post-millennial generation (Gen Z?) aren’t old enough yet to make donations, it’s easy to imagine how they’ll embrace online giving even more so than the generations before them.

Boomers are contributing the most donations, but they also have the largest income. Millennials recently overtook Boomers as the largest generation. As their incomes rise with age, there will expectedly be even more money donated to nonprofits online.

Unique Online Fundraising Opportunities

Many opportunities to receive donations exist solely online. Social networks have created a global communication platform enabling giving initiatives, such as #GivingTuesday, celebrated online in the US the Tuesday after Thanksgiving.

In 2015, nearly $117 million was donated during #GivingTuesday. This movement utilizes social media to spread giving opportunities virally and drum up support for your organization’s cause through online donations. As the movement continues to grow, it would be foolish to miss out on this opportunity.

Another unique online opportunity is the Local Community Giving Days, such as the North Texas Giving Day here in Dallas, TX. On one day per year, donors can search for an organization in their community matching their causes and donate. Corporate sponsors may even offer matching gifts by charity or at certain times during the day. These local giving days–while all online–are often heavily advertised in local media.


With so many channels for nonprofits to focus on, it might seem overwhelming to find a place to begin, but online donations are a powerful tool that your organization cannot afford to miss out on.

My advice is to incorporate online giving into whatever tactic is already working for you. Adding the option to donate online into your direct mail, social media, or email campaigns will only help to increase fundraising.

Blaine McGaffigan is a Content Marketing Specialist who brings over 4 years of digital marketing experience to YourCause. He strives for creativity in all projects and believes a unique and sincere voice is critical for engagement. In his free time, you can find him kayaking the river, taking photographs, and reading comics.

YourCause, LLC is a Dallas, TX based Software as a Service (“SaaS”) provider of the CSRconnect Employee Engagement Platform (“CSRconnect”) and the Orange Leap Donor Management Platform, two fully hosted and managed solutions for employees and non-profits to more effectively deploy and manage their philanthropic, volunteering, sustainability, employee engagement, and overall donor relations programs.


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