Originally posted on Tithe.ly
In the past year alone, mobile giving donations have increased by 205%. If you haven’t utilized mobile donations or you’re still shopping, you are in luck. In this article we provide an overview detailing what Text-to-Donate Services are and then provide a buyer’s guide on choosing the best text-to-donate service.
What is Text-to-Donate Fundraising?
Tithe.ly Text Giving Nonprofit organizations and churches rely on fundraising efforts to operate and grow. One way to eliminate the stress of hitting those fundraising goals is to use a fundraising platform that supports giving on mobile phones. Having a mobile-friendly donation page for your fundraising event can make a big difference and significantly boost donor engagement.
51% of people who visit a nonprofit’s website access it on their mobile device, and 25% of donors complete donations there too. It’s something potential donors look for, and it makes your life a lot easier. This makes text-to-give options an important part of a powerful fundraising strategy for any church or nonprofit organization. Still not sure? We answer some frequently asked questions below.
What Kind of Organizations Use Text-to-Give Fundraising?
Churches, religious organizations, charitable organizations, political organizations, and really, any organization with donation goals can use text-to-give services to increase fundraising revenue. Depending on the organization, the option to text a donation may be announced at Sunday morning services, special conferences, or even virtual events. Charity text donations may be allotted towards general revenue, a special event, or a unique giving campaign (such as for a new building, a mission trip, or an event).
Text-to-donate campaigns can be created for a number of different purposes for a range of organizations. It’s a convenient and effective option for both the church sector and the secular nonprofit sector.
Advantages of Text-to-Donate Fundraising
One of the most significant benefits of using text-to-donate services as a fundraising tool is that it allows donors to make gifts in real time. They may be attending a church event or conference, and learn about an opportunity to give. Using a text-to-donate option, they can immediately respond and take action–creating a convenient donation experience for both giver and recipient via SMS messages.
2. Simplicity and Speed
The first time donors text to give, they’ll be taken to an online mobile donation form. Here, there’s typically a field for inputting email addresses, home addresses, and other personal contact information. They can input custom donation amounts, and even set up recurring payments (explained more below).
After that, donors can automate the process to make it simple and speedy.
3. Intuitive Use
Text-to-give donations are intuitive. Prospective donors typically text a custom keyword to a specific number, and then are taken to an online donation form or donation page. It requires very little explanation, and allows people to respond to giving without asking for instructions.
4. Impulse Giving
Text-to-give campaigns are especially ideal for empowering “impulse giving.” When donors have an opportunity to give immediately, they can respond to their first impulse towards generosity. Delaying the option to give until later can lower response rate, as prospective donors may forget to give or change their minds.
How Does Text-to-Donate Work?
Depending on which service you choose, mobile donors can text a provided number on their mobile phone to make online donations. After a quick authentication and form, they can text the amount they wish to donate, and just like that–it’s done!
Donors can also link a credit card or debit card to their cell phone number to make the donation process even more seamless in the future.
Is Mobile Fundraising Secure?
Short answer? Yes. The easy, but secure process of signing up your organization, and then individual donors keeps everything safe and confidential.
Does Text-to-Donate Work Only with Younger Donors?
Text messaging is common across all age groups. In fact, 94% percent of smartphone users 70 and older are sending text messages on a weekly basis. This makes the jump easier for cell phone donors of all ages.
How Can Churches Set Up Text-to-Donate Services?
Simply sign up to receive your church’s unique phone number, and start super-charging your fundraising campaigns!
If someone knows how to send a text message, they can give to your church in seconds.
Can Text-To-Donate Donors Set Up Recurring Donations?
As mentioned above, text-to-give makes it simple for donors to set up recurring donations. Once donors fill in an online form with their giving information, they can choose an option to set up recurring payments. This can help mobile users automate generosity–and helps organizations to benefit from consistent fundraising revenue.
Text-to-Donate Fundraising Statistics
The average donation size for a text-to-donate campaign is $107. The most likely donor for a text-to-donate campaign is between the ages of 49 and 59, female, married, and a college graduate. In fact, over half of all text donations come from women.
A text-to-donate campaign can be an extraordinarily successful. For example, the American Red Cross brought in $43 million through a text-to-give campaign to bring earthquake relief to Haiti.
Finally, text messages are more quickly read than email messages–making text-to-donate campaigns faster and potentially more effective than an email campaign. It takes 60x longer to respond to an email than to a text message. If you’re looking to collect donations at an event, for example, a text-to-donate campaign will be far more effective at collecting donations at one time.
How to Choose the Best Text-to-Donate Service
Before we learn more about the various text-to-donate services, let’s take a look at some questions you should consider when deciding which service is right for you.
- Who will be using the program? Different services come with different key features. Know the age, size, and training level of your team and congregation before making your decision.
- What features do you really need? Are you looking for the bread-and-butter of text-to-give, or do you want more advanced functionality?
- Will it actually help you raise money? Offset your budget and reach your goals by finding the best value for your money. This means knowing your budget, and having your fundraising goals set beforehand. If you do it this way, your fundraising strategy will pay off and lead to future success down the road.
Here’s Our List of the Best Text-to-Donate Services for Churches in 2022
Text-to-give can be a key player in your fundraising success. Let’s take a look at the top services out there and what makes them the right fit for your church.
When it comes to text-to-give services, Tithe.ly delivers a lot of bang for your buck. Namely, you won’t be stuck paying the 20-40% up-charge cellphone carriers try to stick you with. Another key feature is the speed you can get started. You can sign up on a Thursday and be ready to accept text donations by Sunday.
Other key features for Tithe.ly’s text-to-give service includes: 1-tap giving options, 100% data retention for all donors, automatic bank deposits into your account every 24-48 hours, unlimited funds and designations, and Church management system integration.
Snowball aims to make fundraising easy. Their free plan could be a good place to start if you want to test the waters before making a larger investment. You can also offer donors to cover the processing fee within their donation.
OneCause offers comprehensive fundraising solutions for your organization or campaign. With their Text-to-Give Scoreboard, donors can see how close you are to your fundraising goals. Their standard package starts at $495/year.
Qgiv offers two separate services, text-to-donate and text-to-give depending on your specific needs. They will also tailor a demo for your organization if you want to learn more about their services. You’ll pay 3.95% + $0.30 per transaction for their text-to-give services.
Handbid offers online fundraising services that allow donors to purchase “puzzle pieces” toward the big picture of your fundraiser. It is slightly different from the traditional text-to-give services, but may be worth looking into if you want to elevate your donor’s experience. Plans start at $696/year.
This service offers a 10 or 5-digit number for your potential donors to text. Their plans that include text-to-give services starts at $149/month and also come with other features.
Over to You
To get the most out of your current and future fundraising efforts, it’s time to start utilizing text-to-give services. Whether it’s an auxiliary feature or becomes a mainstay, there are many ways to make it not only work but enhance your goals. If you still aren’t sure, consider trying one of the lower-cost plans or even a 30-day free trial with Tithe.ly. We hope you feel equipped and excited to start using this easy donation platform for your future fundraising events.
Using text-to-give as a donation collection process can represent a significant shift for organizations that are accustomed to a more conventional style of fundraising. Asking for donations to a charitable campaign via text requires concise communication and a few clear instructions, as well as a text-to-give software. It may also require a few promotional messages and a special mobile giving campaign.
Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about text-to-give fundraising.
What Do You Say in a Donation Message?
Text-to-give campaigns are unique in that potential donors initiate the interaction using their mobile phones. Once they are prompted to give, they must take action on their mobile phones to start the process of giving. Your response to the campaign keyword (such as GIVE) can be something like, “To give, simply type the amount you would like to donate, such as $100. Thank you!” Or you can direct them to a form with a link. Keep it short, sweet, and friendly.
How Do I Promote Text to Donate?
Running an effective text-to-give campaign relies on your ability to promote it.
You might have seen text-to-give campaigns promoted at conferences or events on a screen, but you can also use your social media channels, website, and even paper bulletin to promote texting as a giving option. (Did you know that you can text to give?)
When you do promote texting to give at an event, make a quick, clear announcement, along with a graphic that shows easy, listed instructions that show users how to give on their mobile phones. You can even pull out your phone and donate a couple bucks to demonstrate that the process is quick and simple.
How Do You Ask for Donations Nicely?
Asking people to give can feel tricky. It should be very clear that you are asking people to give a financial gift, but you don’t want to make your ask feel like a demand.
Here are a few steps for asking people to text in donations.
- Start with the vision. What will their gifts help to accomplish?
- If you’re in a church context, talk about Scripture that explains generosity in a Kingdom context.
- Remind people that by giving, they become more than donors; they become partners.
- Create urgency. Make it clear that you have a need, and you need their help.
What Do You Write on a Donation Card?
A donation card, or a pledge card, gives personal information and an amount that a donor is promising to give. A pledge card is a great way to encourage people to make a commitment, and can also be a good way to make bigger asks.
More About Tithe.ly Using a comprehensive platform like Tithe.ly gives you a foundation for asking for donations. Not only does Tithe.ly provide text-to-give options, but it also offers an app for easy mobile giving, check scanning, recurring payments, and more. Watch this short, informative video on getting started with Tithe.ly Text-to-Give to see for yourself! Sign up today to streamline and increase mobile giving.