At its best, Giving Tuesday is an amazing opportunity to connect with new donors, reinforce relationships with existing supporters, and build a community of like-minded individuals who will partner with you to make a difference in the world. The trick to expanding your donor base, though, is getting donors… and an astonishing number of people who land on donation forms never actually make a gift. As a matter of fact, 83% of people who land on your main donation page won’t finish a donation.
That percentage will never drop to 0%, but there are a few steps you can take to optimize your form to encourage donations. The trick here is removing “friction” — elements that make giving difficult or frustrating — and reducing the number of distractions and choices donors encounter during the process.
Understanding the Giving Tuesday Donation Process
When you think about optimizing your donors’ giving experience, put yourself in their shoes. You’ve told them a great story that they’ve connected with emotionally. They can visualize the people they can help and the impact they can make with their money. You’ve made a strong ask, and they have a solid understanding of how much they want to give.
They’re riding this emotional wave, and the peak of that wave will result in their gift. Your donation form should distract them from that emotional journey as little as possible. The more they’re distanced from the emotions that make them to want to give, the less likely they are to finish the donation process.
Here are some simple ways to make giving as distraction-free as possible.
First, make the donate button easy to find.
Are you sending an email appeal? Link to your donation form in your text. Add a donate button to the email that takes them directly to the donation form. Link your images to the donation form. Add links to your donation form any time you post an appeal to social media channels. Go to your website and make sure your donate button is bright and eye-catching and easy to find. Connect the donate button directly to your donation form; donors should only have to click one time to land on the right form.
Make getting to the donation form as easy and intuitive as it could possibly be.
Reduce the number of choices your donors have to make.
Have you ever stood in the cereal aisle at the grocery store and tried to pick what you want? It can be overwhelming.
Donation forms can be overwhelming, too. Do donors want to give this amount or that amount? Credit or eCheck? Do they want to restrict their gift? Make it recurring? Opt into your newsletter? Sign up for volunteer opportunities? Dedicate their gift? Send a dedication message to someone?
Your year-round donation form can include many of those fields. But it’s Giving Tuesday, and you want to increase the likelihood that people finish their gift! Here are some ways to do that:
- Create a separate donation form for Giving Tuesday. Link this to your primary “donate” button on your site just for the day! If you’re worried about donors not being able to find your annual form, you can always link to it with a little note (ex: “It’s Giving Tuesday! If you’re looking for our regular donation form, it’s right over here).
- Include a few suggested donation amounts with brief statements about what each amount can achieve. This is proven to raise more money! Instead of having to think about how much they want to give, donors can simply click the amount that seems best for them. Of course, you’ll want to keep your “other” option available for donors who already knew how much they wanted to give when they landed on the form.
- Consider removing restricted options. Restrictions are great for year-round forms! But, if you’ve built your Giving Tuesday campaign around ONE goal or program, including them is not necessary. If your campaign has centered on buying Christmas dinners for local families, your donors will already understand where their gift will be directed.
- Limit additional fields. Donors are put off by long donation forms! If you want people to complete their gift, it needs to be as streamlined a process as possible. It’s tempting to ask donors their communication preferences, how they heard about you, what inspired them to give, and other questions. But your donation form isn’t the place!
- If possible, include a “billing information is the same as personal information” to save donors the annoyance of entering their personal information twice.
The last thing you want donors to do is get distracted during the giving process. Luckily, taking some simple precautions will help them stay focused! Try removing your website’s navigation items from your donation form; the fewer links on your site, the fewer opportunities donors will have to click away from your form. You should also remove competing calls to action on your donation form. When someone’s making a gift, they shouldn’t see calls to volunteer, read blog entries, or do anything that would distract them from finishing their donation.
You can always add your site navigation and additional engagement opportunities on your confirmation page. But keep them off your donation form!
Make donors feel safe
No matter how passionate they are about your cause, donors want to know their personal and financial information is safe. Reassure them by including a few visual cues that indicate they’re safe.
Your donors will check to see if your page is secure. They usually look for the https:// prefix (and the accompanying lock icon) in your giving page’s URL. Beyond that, they may also check for security certificates on your donation form; make sure those stay intact! Security certificates may not necessarily suit your form’s branding, but they’re important security indicators.
The bottom line
The faster and easier the donation process, the more likely your donors are to give! We humans are easily-distracted creatures, especially when we’re on the Internet. Taking some basic steps to optimize your donation process will make giving more enjoyable for your donors and more profitable for you. An easy giving process keeps donors connected to the emotions that made them want to give in the first place and lets them focus on engaging with your organization and your work.
Are you ready for Giving Tuesday?
If you’re looking for online fundraising tools that will help you run the best Giving Tuesday campaign, we’d love to help you out! Contact us to learn more about our unlimited donation forms, campaign thermometers, and other tools you can build into your Giving Tuesday campaign. Schedule a demo today!