An online donation form is the most essential tool a nonprofit can have for their online fundraising efforts. All of your emails, social media posts, and donation appeals will direct your supporters to your donation form, so you want to ensure that you’ve designed an effective donation form that will encourage donors to give to your organization!
One of the best tools you can have for your donation form is an embeddable donation form widget. With an embeddable donation form, you can take donations from your supporters directly on your website. Rather than redirecting your donors to a third-party website, your donors can donate without ever having to leave your organization’s website.
Keeping your donation form on your website will be a trust indicator for your donors. This is a huge benefit because they’ll be more likely to donate to your organization when they know the donation form is officially yours. In fact, embedded donation forms see a 2.4x increase in conversion rates for one-time, recurring, and overall donations.
To create the most effective donation form to embed into your website, it’s important to consider some best practices for donation form design. Here are a few ways you can optimize your donation form to raise more money and bring in more donors to your nonprofit.
Brand your form
When you embed your donation form into your website, you want to make sure that your form matches your website’s branding for a seamless donor experience. Use a similar font and color scheme as your website so your donation form looks like it’s a part of your website rather than an embedded widget. Display your organization’s mission statement at the top of your form so people are reminded of why their donations matter. And don’t forget to add your logo to your form as well. This will help you build your brand awareness and ensure that your organization is easily recognizable to your supporters.
Pick a format
For the longest time, single-step donation forms were considered a best practice in the fundraising industry. The idea behind single step donation forms was that the donation process would require less clicks from start to finish, making it more likely that donors would complete their donations. However, some donors are put off by long donation forms with all the information they need to fill out presented all at once.
With multi-step donation forms, the donation process is broken up into chunks with different sections of your donation form displayed separately from each other. Once donors are finished filling out one section of the donation form, they click to the next page to continue filling out the rest of the donation form. While this format may require more clicks, many donors prefer filling out a donation form in small, manageable chunks as opposed to one long form.
It’s important to do some testing and figure out which format your donors prefer. Your donation form is one of your best opportunities to collect valuable donor data, so picking the right format is essential for your nonprofit’s online fundraising success.
Add suggested donation amounts and images
Make the giving process easier for your donors by providing them with suggested donation amounts. Pre-set donation amounts can actually encourage donors to give more than they normally would, so make sure your suggested donation amounts cover a wide range of values. Make your donation form even more effective by adding impact statements next to each donation amount to give donors an idea of how their gift will be used.
Further emphasize the impact donations will make by adding images to your suggested donation amounts. Showcase your volunteers in action or display a need that your fundraising hopes to address. While it’s important to add visual elements to your donation form, make sure the pictures and graphics you add are relevant to your mission and the work your organization does.
Include recurring giving options
Recurring donors are some of the most impactful people for your organization. Having a reliable form of support for your nonprofit is highly rewarding. Recurring donors tend to give about 42 percent more than one-time donors annually. Make it easy for your donors to upgrade their gift from a one-time donation to a recurring series of donations during the donation process by adding recurring giving prompts to your donation form.
With a recurring giving nudge, donors are shown a gentle reminder on your donation form that they can upgrade their gift. This recurring giving option doesn’t interrupt a donor’s progress as they fill out your donation form but still makes it easy for donors to make their one-time gift a monthly gift instead. With a modal, a pop-up screen will appear during the donation process asking donors to pause and consider making their gift recurring. Donors will need to decline the offer or accept it to continue moving on to make their donation.
Offer GiftAssist options
When donors give online, a small portion of their gift often goes toward covering processing fees. If donors intend for the entirety of their gift to go toward your nonprofit, give them the option to help cover your processing fees by including a GiftAssist option on your donation form. When donors check this option on your donation form, they add a small amount to their gift that will pay for the fee used to process their gift.
Make sure to display the additional amount they will be paying clearly and be transparent about whether the processing fee is a flat fee or a percentage. And to encourage donors to use the GiftAssist option, be clear about how covering the processing fee helps your organization and why it’s valuable.
Your online donation form is one of your greatest assets, so make sure you’re using it to its greatest advantage. Finding a fundraising software that includes the option to create a donation form widget to embed your form into your website will help you bring in more donations and encourage donors to return again and again to make more than one gift.