If a nonprofit organization was on an online dating site, what might their ideal donor’s profile look like? We sorted through donations made to more than 1,000 churches and nonprofit organizations in 2013 and looked for clues about the country’s most generous donors. Based on our findings, your ideal donor profile might look a little like this:
Interests: Volunteering with local nonprofits, grassroots advocacy, nonprofit transparency
Three Things I Can’t Live Without:
1) My iPhone
3) My Macbook
The Most Personal Thing I’m Willing to Admit: I’m a sucker for simple donation pages. I start losing interest if they’re too long or complicated.
Let’s break down Dennis’ profile and why he would be an ideal match for a nonprofit.
1. In 2013, the most generous donors were men named Dennis
According to Qgiv’s data, approximately 53% of the donations made in 2013 were made by men. Of all of the men counted, men named Dennis tended to give the largest gifts and averaged $554 per transaction. They narrowly edged out women named Paige, who tended to be the most generous members of women donors; women named Paige averaged $462 per donation.
- Fundraising takeaway: While men made slightly more donations in 2013, women weren’t far behind them. Make sure your marketing appeals to everyone!
2. For the third year in a row, Mac users gave more money per transaction than Windows users
Qgiv also found that donors who used a Mac operating system were slightly more generous than their Windows-using counterparts. The average donation from a Mac user totaled $178, just a few dollars more than Windows fans. Windows users’ donations averaged $173.The Apple trend extended to other products, too. The default Apple browser, Safari, processed transactions that averaged just $3 more than the runner-up, which was Google Chrome. Apple devices like iPhones and iPads processed a whopping 80% of all mobile donations in 2013, and far outstripped Android devices in terms of both percentage of donations and average donation amount. The average donation given on an Apple device totaled $143, while donations on Android devices averaged $94 per transaction.
- Fundraising takeaway: People are still donating on desktop devices, but iPads and other devices are very popular. Having a mobile-responsive site is increasingly important; it will adjust itself to fit the screen your donors are using, whether it’s a giant iMac or a small smartphone.
3. Desktop users are still king, but mobile is on the rise
Donation forms that are accessed on desktop computers are responsible for the vast majority of gifts; 90% of donations are still made on non-mobile devices. Mobile devices accounted for 10% of all donations, and that number is rising every day!
- Fundraising takeaway: Remember how we said that mobile responsiveness is about to get really important? We weren’t kidding. Qgiv President and Co-Founder Todd Baylis said, “Mobile web access is growing, and it will soon surpass all other forms of internet browsing. It’s important for nonprofits to respond by creating responsive and mobile-optimized fundraising tools. Easy-to-use mobile pages increase donor conversion and make online fundraising more effective.”
4. Most donors make their gifts in the late evening
Dennis is probably fueled by plenty of coffee during the day. Nonprofits processed more donations between 10:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m. EST than any other hour of the day. That means that most donors are giving online late in the evening, even if one accounts for donations made in different time zones.
- Fundraising takeaway: If your donors are active on your site after working hours, figure out ways to keep in touch with them even when you’re out of the office. You can use social tools like Hootsuite to schedule later posts to your fans or send newsletters in the evening when you know they’re online. Keep an eye on your page’s Google Analytics, Facebook Insights, or e-mail trackers to make sure you’re posting and sending appeals when your donors will read them.
5. Simple donation pages are the most effective
Regardless of whether donors like Dennis use mobile or desktop forms, the simple donation pages reign supreme. Once nonprofits start adding required fields other than billing and payment information, the number of users who go on to make a donation starts dropping. The most successful donation forms have no additional required fields, and the number of donors drops only slightly when forms include one additional field. Donor conversion drops precipitously after three or more required fields.
- Fundraising takeaway: Less is more. When you set up your donation page, make it as simple and user-friendly as possible. The longer the form, the less likely someone will make a donation; make sure you only collect the information you really need!
Every supporter has the potential to be a Dennis (or a Paige!). Simplify your donation page, set it up for mobile browsers, and go find your perfect donors. They’re out there!