Online Giving for Churches: 5 Donation Tools to Grow Your Contributions

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In a survey of almost 2,000 websites of nonprofits, including churches, it was discovered that only two-thirds of them were accepting online donations. <<Tweet this stat!

Giving your members the option of donating online or on the go is a huge benefit to your church—the more available and simple you make the giving process, the more donations you will get. This is because when you accept donations online, you give your busy and impulsive donors the speed and simplicity they need, you make it possible for them to set up recurring donations, and also your church can start to build relationships with the younger generation of donors, as younger people are more likely to donate online.

Digital Money

Ready to add online donation functionality to your church website? Here are some great donation tools you should seriously consider implementing:

Razoo Donation Widget

Razoo is a donation widget—you embed the widget into your own website, and then you can accept donations directly from there. It is a free service—there are no setup fees and no monthly subscription fees. The widget also accepts recurring or one-time payments. There is a 4.9% processing fee per donation.

Razoo is also a website for listing your church or cause and getting more exposure—you can use it to set up fundraising pages as well.

Pros/Cons

Razoo is an incredibly simple solution for accepting donations on your website—you aren’t even obligated to sign up for an account. They can accept donations for your church as long as it files with the IRS. There is also no additional per transaction fee—no matter how large the transaction is, you are always charged 4.9%, with no added cost. Your donors make their whole donation directly from your church’s website through the Razoo widget—your donors are never sent to another website, and they also have an app that allows you to accept donations on Facebook.

Some cons are that Razoo pays out to nonprofits once a month instead of within a couple of days of getting the donation, so you won’t get your money immediately, and there is also a $10 minimum donation allowed through the widget. Also, compared with other payment processors, the 4.9% transaction fee is somewhat high.

FirstGiving

FirstGiving is a nonprofit tool that lets you create custom fundraising and donation pages on their site. It comes with full reporting, can integrate with other donor management, social media, or CMS software you’re using, and has widgets (like a “Donate Now” button) that you can embed on your own website.

They charge a 5% FirstGiving Fee (investment in product and development) plus a 2.5% credit card fee. Event registration costs 4.25% for online events—either your church or organization can cover the fee, or you can choose to charge your donors that percentage instead. This fee is only applicable if you charge for your event registration.

Pros/Cons

FirstGiving gives you the ability to add YouTube videos and Flickr pictures straight to your donation page. They include a thermometer that displays goal progress, and it can handle offline donations as well as the ones you receive online. They also have event registration.

Some downsides are that the fees are a bit high, it does not support pledge, recurring gifts, or honorariums/tributes, does not allow custom fields to be added to the form, and has limited customization options.

Click&Pledge

Click&Pledge is an application that allows you to accept online donations, sell merchandise, promote events, and even set up recurring transactions. They charge a 3.50% processing fee, a $0.35 per transaction processing fee, and a $20 monthly fee—there is no application fee.

Pros/Cons

Click&Pledge allows you to sell items as well as get donations. It supports pledges, offers customization, and also offers some integration with certain tools, such as Salesforce.com, CiviCRM, Predictive Response xPress and CampaignFlow, Constant Contact, MailChimp, iContact, and Twitter. It also has different price packages to suit your specific needs.

Cons are that the fee structure can be a bit complicated at times. For instance, incidental merchant bank fees are applied, such as Assessments and an Access Fee that will be detailed on monthly merchant statements, and there are also non-qualified transactions. Although most charitable transactions are waived, Visa and MasterCard may assess 1.50% for cards that earn points; the American Express per transaction fees can get very high.

Network for Good

Network for Good’s DonateNow gives nonprofits services to help them to raise money and reach more donors online, such as a secure donation page with your branding, mobile-optimized giving, integrated social sharing, and built-in fundraising coaching. Pricing starts at $59.95/month (annual contract).

Pros/Cons

DonateNow offers recurring gifts, a single page donation form that looks like your website, and they give donors the option to cover the credit card processing fee, which is 3%.

Cons include the fact that the Lite version of DonateNow does not offer customization, and the form is many pages long.

Qgiv

Qgive is a solution that gives you the ability to accept any type of online donation, as well as allows your donors to set it up so that they give recurring automatic fees. It allows you to set up event registration as well.

They charge a one-time setup fee of $199, as well as merchant account fees: $0.25 transaction fee for Visa/MasterCard/Discover, $0.50 for eCheck/ACH, and American Express is $0.25, but requires a separate application and may charge additional fees.

Pros/Cons

Qgiv will imitate the look and feel of your website pretty completely, gives you the option of setting up recurring donations, allows you to add as many fields as you want, allows you to make it mobile friendly, and also lets you enter gifts in on the back-end.

A downside is that donors have to leave your website in order to give.

Additional recommendations

Causes is good for social media fundraising, and CrowdRise and EventBrite are good websites for promoting events and fundraising pages.

If those still don’t quite work for you, you can look into FundlyGiveZooks, Donor ToolsMyGivingSolutions.com, and JustGive.org  for more options to consider.

And here are some examples of church CMS providers that also offer online giving solutions:

Know of any more good donation tools? Add them in the comments below!

Looking for Church Management software? Check out Capterra's list of the best Church Management software solutions.

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About the Author

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Leah Readings

Leah Readings is a Software Analyst for Capterra, a company that connects buyers and sellers of business software. She specializes in church management software along with several other software directories. When she’s not helping software buyers, she is, among other things, reading, writing, and spending time with her family and friends.

Comments

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Hi,

Check out this Givecentral an online donation tracker/tool.
GiveCentral’s church app and web solution for donor management is a one-stop shop for online fundraising. Using the various features of our donation tracker your non-profit organization can, organize several calls for donations, set up different events and track all of them at the same time. Our user-friendly administration interface allows you to easily manage donor contributions.

Here you go: https://www.givecentral.org/location

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Our church uses SecureGive (www.securegive.com) because it features four platforms with one login: online giving, kiosk giving, text-to-give and a mobile app. SecureGive also has a connection to our church management system. They have a multisite module that makes it easy for our second location. We have used SecureGive since 2005.

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My church uses Continue to Give software. I think they should make the list 🙂

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Hey, Leah! This is a great lineup of recommendations. I’m curious: what would you say are the main criteria a church should consider when choosing a giving software?

My recommendations have been to focus on three areas:

– Capability: what does it need to do?
– Compatibility: does it fit my church?
– Convenience: will it actually be used?

I made an infographic about it for eChurch, if you’d like to check it out. (BTW, they’ve really, really mastered the giving speed game—they’re down to giving in 5 seconds! I’d love to know what you think of them.)

But that’s just me, and I’m not the Capterra expert. 😉 What’s your take?

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GivingTools (www.givingtools.com) has lower rates and better terms than all those mentioned…and a really sharp interface. I encourage people to check it out. Thanks!

[…] For your congregation members, make sure you have your social media buttons, recent sermons and online giving links readily available if your church has this […]

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Hello Abby,

There is one more tool for Online Giving for Churches. DoJiggy – http://www.dojiggy.com – provides a complete line of online fundraising software solutions for all of the most popular fundraising events and initiatives. Each of our online fundraising software solutions comes with an easy-to-use, customizable fundraising website where participants can easily register and collect online donations.

We have also a webpage dedicated to Online Giving for Churches resources – http://www.dojiggy.com/s/churchfundraising/

Check it out 🙂

Our best regards,

Peter Pereira

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Hi Abby! Thanks so much for letting me know! Do you mind just clarifying where it was unclear? I’m sorry, I just found all the information for the pricing from that same pricing page and I can’t see what I’m missing! The part about additional fees for American Express I took from the starred portion at the bottom of the section on online pricing–is it misleading because I didn’t say that it was optional? Please let me know, and I would be happy to make the changes. Thanks Abby 🙂

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Hi Leah! I’m Abby Jarvis and I work at Qgiv. Thanks so much for including us in this write-up! It’s super exciting to see ourselves up there 🙂

Just to clarify our fees: our pricing is a bit different than the ones listed here. Our fees can be found right here: http://www.qgiv.com/pricing/ . We just don’t want people to think we have any hidden fees or charges!

Thanks so much again!

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