What do you get the person who has everything? It’s a question more of us seem to be asking as we approach milestone moments such as birthdays, weddings and other celebrations. Charities are catching on to this theme, with many organizations marketing donations in lieu of typical birthday or holiday gifts. The idea makes a lot of sense, especially when considering younger donors who are tech-savvy, pressed for time, and like the idea of making a difference.
Sick Kids Foundation in Toronto promotes their “Get Better Gifts” campaign as a meaningful gift opportunity for every occasion, from birthdays and weddings to teacher appreciation and baby showers. Donors get to choose what “gift” they are purchasing for the hospital through their donation, with options ranging from a $20 arts and crafts kit all the way up to a $5,000 wheelchair. Donors receive an instant tax receipt, and the recipient is notified of the gift through a personalized greeting card.
Likewise, amongst my own cohort of thirty and forty-something parents, traditional birthday party invitations are being replaced by evites that request donations in lieu of gifts, with a simple link or form to easily complete the transaction. It’s a lot more convenient than shopping for a present that the recipient may not want, and for parents it’s both a teachable moment and a way to avoid congesting their homes with toys and games that are quickly discarded or forgotten.
For charities, on-line gift giving is both an opportunity to garner support for the cause and a chance to engage the donor in an easy, feel-good interaction.
Providing the right experience is critical, so how can you ensure a positive and user friendly process for your donor?
MAKE THE OPPORTUNITY EASY TO FIND
Your home page should include a prominent link or tab for tribute cards and on-line gift opportunities. Include the link in your email signature if you are promoting a special “gift” giving campaign.
HAVE A CLEAR AND EASY TO COMPLETE ON-LINE FORM
Ensure your on-line form is clear, easy to complete, and offer a phone number to call if your donor needs help. Remember, you are collecting not only the donor’s contact information but also the recipient’s information, so you need to include the appropriate fields.
PROVIDE THE OPPORTUNITY TO DEDICATE THE DONATION
Make sure you include a field that gives your donor the opportunity to dedicate the donation. This dedication can be ‘in memory of’ or ‘in honour of’ depending on the circumstance. The donor may choose to also write a customized message to the recipient. As this is a gift, your donor will appreciate having the flexibility to create something personalized.
EXPLAIN HOW THE GIFT WILL BE ACKNOWLEDGED TO GIFT RECIPIENT
Specify how the recipient will be notified of the gift. Many on-line gift campaigns offer donors the opportunity to choose an e-card, printable PDF card, or have a card mailed to the gift recipient.
SAY THANK YOU AND PROVIDE AN INSTANT TAX RECIEPT
As with any on-line donation, ensure that your process provides an instant tax receipt and thank you to the donor.
When you provide an easy and customizable experience, the opportunity to give donations as gifts can become a successful fundraising channel and deliver an important service to your donors. No need for wrapping!
For more ideas on online giving, get in touch with a Giving Gateway fundraising concierge at 1.888.930.GIVE (4483) or schedule a FREE demo.