Website Donations

It’s July, so for most organisations their big Winter or Tax appeal has come to an end and some Fundraising departments use this as an opportunity to take a big breath and some down time until planning their next appeal.

I know this because we’ve been doing some research into what the donor journey looks like after a website donation is made. Last Christmas we made a website donation to 100 Australian charities and we’ve been documenting the donor journey that each organisation has taken us on (or not).

Christmas donation nurture journeys

What we’ve seen is:

  • We’ve never heard from 35 charities at all!
    Many charities sent at least one email, but If we exclude email and expect follow up in the form of Direct Mail or a phone call, the number goes up to 51 organisations who did not contact us at all in 6 months after receiving a donation.
  • Despite making a website donation and opting in for emails, it was a very small number of organisations that have sent regular emails and eAppeals (Unicef, ACF, Greenpeace, Lock the Gate, The Wilderness Society, National Parks Association)
  • 4 charities have been remarketing us on Facebook and Display banner ads (The Wilderness Society, Berry St, Amnesty International and the Cancer Council NSW). I was really surprised by this, with all the hype after the Soi Dog presentation at DigiRaise and how many prospective clients were asking about it, I would have thought it would be more prevalent (obviously it’s a harder thing to track so we may have missed a few).
  • Only 2 charities followed up our donation with a RG upgrade. Red cross made 3 calls and only asked on call 3 in February and Anglicare called in April.
  • Only 3 organisations sent us an SMS – Fred Hollows, Canteen and Habitat for Humanity (until 29 June we had only heard from Habitat for Humanity).
  • We have clearly been on a designed donor journey for 8 charities (of which Make a Wish, Caritas and Amnesty were particularly impressive).
  • In the 6 months since we made the donation, 52 charities have sent us a DM appeal (may just for Tax time). 10 organisations sent 3 appeals in that same 6-month period.

Nurture the supporter into a donor – with contact!

A donor is most engaged at their first contact. Sometimes the first contact is a petition signature or a register for an event or in our case a donation. You have to take advantage of the first 2 weeks after a donation is made. As you can see, some charities really nurture their donors, others don’t. 35 charities have not contacted us at all (only 49 by direct mail), isn’t that surprising?

Website Donations Research 2016

If you’re interested in learning more about this website donations research, we’ll be releasing it in September 2016 at the Fundraising Forum and running seminars in Sydney, Melbourne and Wellington to share the findings in the months after. Please get in touch.