Mobile Giving 101: The Essential Fundraising Guide [Updated]


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One way to inspire your donors to give to your organization is to make donating as easy and fast as possible for them. With mobile giving, your donors can support your nonprofit from wherever they are through their cell phones. There are many mobile giving options you can provide to your donors to empower them in their support of your mission.  

Learn more about using mobile giving to increase your organization’s fundraising! 

What is mobile giving? 

Mobile giving is a fundraising technique where your donors can give to a campaign through a mobile device. Mobile giving comes in many different forms, like text fundraising, mobile donation pages, mobile apps, kiosks, or mobile email campaigns. 

  • Text fundraising 
    This form of mobile giving enables donors to donate via text message.  
  • Mobile donation pages 
    Mobile donation pages are mobile-responsive giving forms on your website that donors can access from any internet-enabled device. 
  • Mobile apps 
    Mobile apps can be downloaded to your donors’ phones to manage their mobile giving to your organization. 
  • Kiosks 
    A kiosk can be used on-site for your organization to accept card donations without your donors using their phones.  
  • Mobile email campaigns 
    Mobile email campaigns use a “Donate” button within an email for your donors to click and immediately give to your nonprofit. 

Types of mobile giving 

Mobile giving vs. online giving 

There is a lot of overlap between online giving and mobile giving, but the primary difference between them is the device your donors use to give. Online giving is completed from a computer, while mobile giving is completed from a mobile device, like a tablet or smartphone. Both types of giving accept donations from digital channels such as online donation forms, emails, and social media sites. 

Mobile giving vs. text fundraising 

Although text fundraising is a popular type of mobile giving, the terms are not interchangeable. Mobile giving can refer to any type of giving achieved through a mobile device, while text fundraising occurs only through texts. 

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How can mobile giving improve fundraising? 

The greatest strength of mobile giving is that it encourages contextual giving. Contextual giving is an important fundraising concept that shrinks donation abandonment rates by keeping donors in the same context that inspired them to give in the first place—your website, an event, or even just a mood. Here’s how mobile giving allows donors to give in different contexts: 

Text fundraising 

Text fundraising allows your donors to give whenever they feel moved, whether they’re at an event or listening to an inspiring speech. At events, you can advertise your text fundraising keyword around the venue for your donors to make a donation or pledge to donate. For year-round giving, include your keyword on your website and social media. You can also create special keywords for giving day campaigns. A unique keyword that’s easy to remember makes it easier for your supporters to share among their friends and family as well!

Mobile donation pages 

Mobile donation forms allow your donors to give wherever they have internet access, instead of having to wait until they get back to their computers. You can engage with your donors at events with a QR-code leading to your donation page. Or post the link to your social media for your supporters to donate while they scroll.

Mobile apps 

Mobile giving apps allow your donors to easily manage their giving experience by clicking on an app. You supporters can save your organization to their app and manage their donations at any time. Mobile giving apps are great for recurring givers because they can access all their giving activity from the app without having to login every time they want to view their account.


Kiosks allow your nonprofit to swipe your supporters’ cards in person and accept donations quickly and easily, integrating the giving experience into the fun of an event. You can also use kiosks at your organization for any visitors to who want to donate but don’t have any cash on hand.

Mobile email campaigns 

Mobile email campaigns allow your donors to give while checking their email throughout the day. These campaigns can link directly to your mobile donation page or include your text fundraising keyword, providing your donors with multiple ways to give from their phones.

Benefits of mobile giving 

For nonprofits 

  • Immediate 
    Mobile giving allows your donors to give whenever they’re inspired, while your nonprofit enjoys a shorter turnaround time, higher conversions, and faster access to funds. 
  • Versatile
    Because it can be use anywhere, mobile giving can be used for all types of fundraising. From annual fundraising to events to giving days, mobile giving provides your donors a way to give without needing to take out their wallets.
  • Engaging 
    Mobile giving grants your nonprofits another way to interact with your donors through text messaging, which helps you connect with the younger, mobile-savvy generation and reach busy-bee donors with their favorite tech. 
  • Insight-generating 
    Mobile giving allows you to get to know your donors even better by understanding their giving habits and trends and noting their preferred giving avenues and communication methods, which helps you improve your outreach strategy. Data management tools provide your organization with new ways to segment your donor data and create custom reports to help you decide which strategies are working best for you. 
  • Cost-effective 
    Mobile giving is quick and affordable to implement. This saves your organization time and money that you can use for fundraising. Also, donations no longer coming from phone bills means more money for your nonprofit and less for the donor’s service provider. 

For donors 

  • Convenient 
    We live in the smartphone era, so you should take advantage of it. Meet donors where they are with mobile giving and increase conversion rates by making giving as easy as possible. 
  • User-friendly 
    Mobile giving is intuitive and easy to understand because your donors are already familiar with their smartphones, so they’ll never be put off by having to learn a new platform. 
  • Quick 
    Mobile giving can take two steps or less for your donors. By making your forms easy to fill out, you can decrease “shopping cart abandonment.” 
  • Secure
    No more worrying about losing checks or cash in the mail. Mobile giving is PCI compliant and reliable. Your donors already trust their smartphone confidentiality, so they’re more likely to trust the process. 
  • Empowering 
    Mobile giving empowers your donors to give on their own terms. Offer recurring giving options and matching gift opportunities through your mobile giving software. You can also allow your donors to make donations via QR-code.   

What kinds of organizations use mobile giving? 

Religious organizations 

These institutions are implementing mobile giving in their strategies as a “digital collection plate.” Fewer and fewer congregants bring cash or their checkbooks to church, but they never leave home without their phones! 

Disaster relief nonprofits 

These organizations, which have always prioritized quick action, are embracing mobile giving as a way to raise funds immediately when they need to be first on the ground with food, shelter, and medicine as soon as tragedy strikes. 

Animal rights organizations 

Animal rights work never stops, so organizations need a fundraising tool they can use every day. With mobile giving, they can reach out to their supporters for every need. Easy outreach and easy donations keep animals safe and happy all year long. 

Schools and universities 

With mobile giving, universities can reach out to their alumni network instantly. Alumni love to give to the programs they enjoyed as a student, so universities reach out to them with those specific campaigns. Busy professionals appreciate how little time mobile giving takes. 

Environmental nonprofits 

Mobile giving provides opportunities for donors to give to their favorite environmental nonprofits whenever they feel inspired, even if they’re out doing work for the cause. With mobile giving, organizations can decrease their use of paper and direct mail services. 

Arts and culture nonprofits 

Arts and culture-focused nonprofits excel at fundraising events because they can get donors involved with their mission in a personal way. When donors feel inspired by a nonprofit, they can give immediately with mobile giving. Making the donation process as quick and easy as possible means donors can support the organization and then focus on enjoying the event.  

Health and human services 

These nonprofits are fueled by intensely personal missions, like fighting a disease or promoting equality. Peer-to-peer fundraising is, in turn, fueled by personal connections to the mission. When health and human interest nonprofits can offer their peer-to-peer fundraisers convenient mobile giving options, their fundraising capacity skyrockets. 

International nonprofits 

Large organizations with international missions rely on data to improve their outreach and fundraising capabilities. Mobile giving allows these organizations to reach more people than ever and use that data to expand their reach. Because the mobile giving data can be easily imported into a CRM, there’s no chance that a donor will slip through the cracks. 

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Get to know mobile giving 

There are many ways to incorporate mobile giving into your nonprofit’s fundraising strategy, so it’s hard to know where to start! Here’s a breakdown of the different types of mobile giving tools and how your organization can get to work raising more money. 

screenshot of a mobile giving text donation

Text fundraising campaigns 

Text fundraising is easier than ever with Qgiv’s intuitive text fundraising tools. Your organization gets a number and decides on a keyword, and you distribute that keyword to your donors. Then, they text the keyword to your number and receive a link to your mobile donation page. 

The whole process takes less than a minute and is just as secure as your normal online donation process. Plus, your donors will receive an immediate thank-you text and a link to a receipt after making their donation. 

screenshot of Lakeland Food Pantry mobile donation page for mobile giving

Mobile donation pages 

Don’t worry about making your donation page mobile responsive! With Qgiv’s online donation platform, every donation form is automatically mobile and tablet responsive. Your donors will be able to donate from anywhere they have internet access—just as easily as they can from home. 

screenshot of $300 total donated on Givi  for mobile giving

Mobile apps 

Your donors can manage their giving from the palm of their hand with a mobile app. With the Givi app, your donors can create an account, set their donation schedule, and track their donations, all from their phones.  


A kiosk is the perfect software for an event where you know you’ll need to collect card donations from your attendees. You’ll be able to quickly and easily swipe cards and accept donations from your attendees so they can get back to the rest of your event as soon as possible. 

Mobile email campaigns  

Mobile email campaigns are great for sharing your mobile giving tools with your donors through a communication channel they’re already familiar with. Use Qgiv’s integrations to schedule an email series that shows your donors all your giving options. 

Mobile giving best practices 

  1. Keep it simple. No one wants to spend 20 minutes searching for a donation form. Focus on adding simple navigation and easy-to-access information. 
  2. Offer different options. Different donors want to support you in different ways. Not everyone is comfortable with giving via credit card, and some of your donors might not carry cash. Make sure your mobile giving tools provide your donors with multiple donation avenues. 
  3. Offer comprehensive support. Your donors aren’t software experts. Provide a way for them to contact you if they need technical support or have general questions. 
  4. Get the word out. Donors can’t use your mobile giving tools if they don’t know about them! Let them know how they can give through your website, social media, and emails. 
  5. Offer recurring donations. Recurring donations provide your donors an easy way to continuously support your organization. Allow your donors to choose how frequently they want to give. 
  6. Use reminders. Keep your supporters in a giving mood by reminding them about your cause. Send out reminders for campaigns through your text fundraising software and email integrations. 
  7. Get everyone on board. Ensure you have total buy-in for your mobile giving tools by including everyone! From your board of directors to your staff, make sure everyone knows about your giving options. 
  8. Make it secure. Your donors need to know that their financial information is secure. Maintain PCI compliance and practice strong data management. 
  9. Include a clear call to action. Providing clear instructions to your donors during your fundraising campaign will increase the efficacy of your outreach efforts. 
  10. Make it easy. Make mobile giving as easy as possible by creating mobile-responsive donation forms, as well as providing instructions for how to donate. 
  11. Say thank you. Showing gratitude is crucial for maintaining strong donor relationships. Send a follow-up thank-you message after someone makes a gift. 
  12. Track data. Use your software’s reporting tools to track the progress of your campaign. Your data can show you how to further increase your outreach efforts. 

Questions to ask before implementing mobile giving

How much do you have to spend? 

Pricing varies by provider, so research the pricing structure of all the packages you’re considering before purchasing. 

What type(s) of mobile giving will you use? 

The types of mobile giving you have access to will depend on your provider, so experiment with all your options to see what your donors respond best to. 

Do you need to integrate your mobile giving platform with other software? 

Yes. To most effectively use all of your data, your mobile giving data should flow into any other software that your data management strategy relies on. 

Will the cell service provider take a cut of the donation? 

No. Because the donations go through your online donation form, cell service providers won’t see the donation at all. 

Is mobile giving priced at a flat fee for all organizations? 

No. Most vendors offer a range of mobile giving solutions priced for different scales, so you only pay for what you need. 

Can donors set up recurring donations? 

As long as your online donation form supports recurring donations, your mobile donors will be able to opt into this process during their experience. 

Final thoughts  

Mobile giving can help increase your fundraising by making donating as convenient as possible. Use multiple mobile giving tools to provide a range of donation options for your donors to choose from. With mobile giving, your supporters will be able to make a donation the moment inspiration hits. Happy fundraising!   

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