Online fundraising garners millions in charitable giving for the nonprofit industry every year, but there are so many options it can be difficult to find the right online donation tools for your organization.
Here are some of our favorite online donation tools, with an emphasis on widgets and donate buttons. They are all both easy for donors to use and affordable for nonprofit fundraising at all levels.
1. Google Wallet & Google Grants
With Google Wallet, your online donation and shopping history is easily accessible from anywhere and at anytime. After initial setup, Google Wallet will allow donors to easily repeat donations in a few clicks. Not many options for personalization exist, but being associated with Google’s trusted brand will help assuage any fears about the online donation process.
The standard service costs 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction. If you fit the application requirements, we strongly recommend applying for a Google Grant, which sets you up with AdWords, also completely free. It’ll take a few months to process your grant, but it’s worth it. With Google’s previous service, Google Checkout, the fees were waived for nonprofits with a Google Grant. However, it’s unclear as to whether or not that transferred over to Google Wallet when Google Checkout shut down.
2. Razoo & Razoo Donation Widget
Razoo is a great website for indexing your nonprofit organization to get exposure for your cause. Use Razoo to set up fundraising pages, or make use of Razoo’s donation widget to easily process donations on your own website.
Razoo has a competitive 4.9% processing free per donation. Plus, the widget accepts recurring or one-time payments and is super easy to set up.
3. Network for Good DonateNow Lite
Network for Good’s DonateNow offers a variety of fundraising services and software to help get your online donations flowing, including branded donation pages, email services, and hands-on customer service.
While the DonateNow services range in expensive and can be prohibitive for smaller organizations, Network for Good offers a DonateNow Lite service which can be implemented with 5% transaction fees, recurring donation functionality, and a fundraising page.
4. PayPal Donations
PayPal offers services to help nonprofits with online donations, especially in the form of their handy donation buttons for qualified nonprofit organizations. As a plus, if you know some HTML, PayPal’s donation buttons allow you to easily gather donor information in a way many comparable buttons don’t.
PayPal’s a valuable, trusted brand for processing money online. It’s ideal for donors who are existing users, but those without accounts are free to make one-time payments with a credit card. The standard processing fee per donation is 2.2% of the donation, plus $0.30.
FirstGiving was designed specifically for nonprofit organizations (versus being built on a business model and then adapted for nonprofits). This donation tool can integrate with other tools including certain CRM, donor management, social media, CMS, analytics and email tools.
Not only do you have the option to accept donations online, but you can manage direct donations, donor communications, events and grassroots campaigns.
The standard fee per donation is 7.5% (5.0% support and enhancement of the product + 2.5% credit card fees). Event registration costs 4.25% for online events. Your organization can cover the fee, or charge donors the percentage.
These are just a few low-expense, easy-to-integrate options for online fundraising, but there are many other venues to look into, especially if you’re looking beyond widget-based online tools.
Some additional recommendations: Causes is great for social media fundraising, and sites like EventBrite and CrowdRise are excellent for promoting events and fundraising pages. GoGetFunding is a good option for crowdfunding personal causes, projects and events. If you still haven’t found what you’re looking for, check out GiveZooks, Fundly, PaymentSpring, JustGive.org and Amazon SimplePay Donations for some more options.
What online donation tools have worked the best for your nonprofit?
**This article was updated on March 3, 2014 due to changes in pricing and features of the online donation tools.