Four Tips for Increasing Recurring Gifts

Four Tips for Increasing Recurring Gifts

Four Tips for Increasing Recurring Gifts

Donor retention is a critical part of any fundraising plan. Hubspot recently shared three tips on retaining new donors. While we’ve covered this subject a couple of times, we wanted to focus on Hubspot’s suggestion to lead with recurring gifts.

Recurring giving is when a donor self-selects to make a donation that is processed automatically at a regular interval. Monthly, is the most common interval. Receiving donations on a monthly basis provides great benefits for nonprofit organizations:

– A more stable giving pattern

– Donors are more likely to donate more cumulatively than they would with a one-time donation

– There isn’t an end date

As highlighted in the Hubspot article, the Humane Society has shifted their donation function to lead with monthly giving. This is a great step to encourage more donors to give this way. Below are a few additional opportunities to lead donors towards this option.

Explain how monthly giving helps your organization

Transparency is very important and has increasing value with donors. Don’t be afraid to let them see behind the curtain. Describe how monthly giving helps your organization and the stability that it provides. Expound on how your organization will use that donation on a month-to-month basis.

Explain the benefits that monthly giving has for the donor

Recurring giving will be a new concept to many of your donors. Don’t just focus on how this helps your organization – you can illustrate why it’s beneficial to the donor. By giving a smaller amount on a monthly basis your donor has more fiscal flexibility in the short-term. It is also critical to educate potential donors that they can easily opt out of giving at any time.

Make it simple

When was the last time you went through your donation process as a user? Sign up for a monthly donation and think about the experience for someone who is not familiar with your online donation platform. Ask a colleague or family member that is not tech-savvy to go through the process with you. Get their feedback and look for any areas that are confusing.

Thank your recurring givers in a public setting

Thanking your donor quickly and effectively is obviously critical. Take the opportunity to thank recurring donors in a public setting. This can be on social media or at an event. You are not just thanking the donor, but you’re communicating the opportunity for recurring gifts and that your organization values this type of giving.

We hope these ideas will help increase the recurring giving at your organization.


Below are a lot of great articles from the last week. If you’re into that sort of thing, check out our Tumblr for ongoing links.

  1. Shauna Nep from the Goldhirsh Foundation wrote a great article, published through EPIP, that focuses on how nonprofits and foundations need to take further steps to increase their transparency, inclusion and collaboration.
  2. Communicopia released a new report on how digital teams have evolved in recent years and share some key findings on SSIR’s blog.
  3. Effective storytelling is critical for a lot of nonprofit organizations. Fast Company shares three tips on how you can tell better stories.
  4. #fundchat is a staple in this link roundup. Their weekly chat transcript is a great resource if you’re looking to increase corporate support.
  5. Social media security is an ongoing concern for individuals and nonprofit organizations. Ryan Holmes, CEO at HootSuite, writes a thoughtful article on the subject.
  6. Last week we discussed the challenges with creating false urgency in your email and social media. What happens if you are faced with real urgency? Network for Good provides tips on creating urgency in your emails.
  7. OpenOakland is doing some incredible work through their weekly civic hacking meetup. We encourage you to check out their Oakland Data Day on Feb 22nd for the first as part of Code Across America!
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