Donor behaviour online

What do donors want online?

Our research set out to determine what donors want in a website donation page as well as what they get.
We surveyed 180 donors and conducted 10 in-depth personal interviews to get the donor perspective. To determine what they were getting we made $10 donations to 100 different Australian charities scrutinising 59 different aspects ranging from the number of form fields to the follow up.

Images on donation pages

The majority of the donors we surveyed agreed that having images, a case study or video on the donation page would make them more likely to donate – so make sure you get some compelling content on your donation page. However, when we asked them if they preferred to see positive, solution-orientated images or those depicting the problem, they want to see positive images.

Donors said that negative images left them feeling guilty and they wouldn’t donate. But, most fundraisers know from their testing that if we don’t demonstrate the problem, the donor won’t engage. So make sure that you are highlighting the problem through captions and headlines next to a positive image that demonstrates the solution.

What will my donation do?

It is not enough to just show the problem and the solution. Donors want you to be specific about what their money will mean and tell them how much they should give, to achieve the result. In short, we highly recommend that you use dollar handles on your website donation page.

A staggering 81% of donors said that they would be willing to donate more if they knew what their donation was providing. Almost two thirds of the donation pages we benchmarked did not have dollar handles. There’s a big opportunity to increase average donations through better educating the donor.


Thank your donors

It should come as no surprise that donors like to be thanked – especially older donors. Thankfully, 98% of the charities we surveyed did have a thank you page. But, there’s always room for improvement with less than a quarter of those pages being personalised. Remember to make the most of every touch point you have with your donor, because most of us like to hear/ see our own name.

What do you think? Do you like to be thanked, is the sound of your name music to your ears? Please leave a comment, I’d love to hear your opinion.