15 Most Popular Online Fundraising Sites
Even if your group has a website – what if a PayPal Donation button isn’t enough and you still need help with marketing, email services and tracking your donations? Consider trying on of the dozens of online fundraising sites available; we’ve combed the web for you and have come up with a list of the 15 (or so) most popular ones.
Which one is the right one for you? First, make a list of what kind of services you need: online payments and tracking, online auctions, volunteer management, marketing, e-mail campaigns, website design and hosting? Anything else?
Then – remember that each of these online fundraising sites is in business to make money from the groups that sign up with them – compare services and fees of three to five of the fundraising services listed. Fees to consider are one-time setup fees, any monthly fees and per transaction fees. Some fees might be higher or lower depending on how much you collect in donation dollars.
Each of the websites below provides a variety of services, some which might be useful for your group, some won’t. Be sure you don’t pay for services you don’t need and that the customer support offered is sufficient for you. Of course, make sure the website itself appeals to you and is easy to use! (Tip: Raising funds online may present new legal considerations for your group. It may be best to consult your legal adviser before raising funds online.)
Finally, in order to raise funds online through one of these companies, your group usually has to be an officially registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Are you ready to apply for non-profit status?
So here we go, the 15 (or so) most popular online fundraising sites – not in any particular order:
(We occasionally update this list.)
Our list of online fundraising sites:
GoFundMe.com allows charitable, business and personal fundraising.
DonorsChoose.org This one is for teachers only.
IndieGogo.com. This company offers a platform for fundraising for commercial projects as well as for fundraising for charitable causes.
VirginMoneyGiving.com (UK only.)
ChipIn.com Micro-funding site – supporters can give as little as 25 cents. Collect your funds via PayPal. This site is set up for individuals to raise funds on behalf of others.
Crowdrise.com. Donations processed by NetworkForGood.org.
ThePoint.com (by the creators of Groupon). The Point isn’t only for activists and philanthropists. You can raise money for other purposes as well.
If you need online fundraising management software:
After comparing some of these services, ask yourself, if the money you’re going to spend in the form of fees – which reduces your donation dollars – is really worth the service you’re getting.
Maybe recruiting more volunteers, or putting more effort into marketing your fundraiser would be sufficient for your group.
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