There’s no one-size-fits-all donation form that can handle every type of transaction your donors and families make. You do too much! Your families need to be able to donate, pay for services, buy supplies or fundraising items, submit club dues, and more. Trying to cram all those options onto one donation form can be confusing for your donors and a nightmare for your bookkeepers.
Instead, try setting up individual forms for different programs you’re running at your school. Here are some ideas you can use while you’re setting up your unique forms.
Use unique forms to support scholarship funds
If your school offers scholarships to deserving students, you may want to explore setting up a donation form specifically for people who want to give to a scholarship fund. The way you handle this will be unique to your organization!
When setting up your scholarship form (or forms), you’ll want to keep one key pointer in mind: donors will have to choose what scholarship they support, and it should be easy for them to find and choose the correct fund. If you only have a handful of scholarship funds to manage, you might want to handle them all on the same donation form. If you have dozens, you might want to split them up.
How you split up the scholarship funds supported on a single form is up to you. You could divide them by interest group (athletic scholarships, academic scholarships, legacy scholarships, etc.). Or you could group them by funder (family scholarships, association scholarships, etc.). However you decide to split up your forms, just make sure it’s easy for donors to give to the right fund!
Set up forms for clubs or associations
If your school offers clubs or student associations that require yearly or monthly dues, consider setting up forms to handle those transactions. This is a great option for groups like:
- Academic honor societies
- Sororities and fraternities
- School clubs
- Sport groups
- Other affiliation groups
By setting up unique forms for these groups (instead of using one form with various restriction options), you can direct money raised on these forms directly to the clubs’ individual bank accounts. National Honor Society dues can be routed into a different bank account than dues for the intramural soccer league, for example, which can make bookkeeping much easier for your staff.
Use different forms for class fundraisers
When I was in school, each class had a bank account they used to raise money for a senior trip. At each grade level, the class had a fundraiser: one year they’d sell t-shirts, another year they sold boxes of Krispy Kreme donuts, another year they sold homecoming tickets, etc. If your school has similar fundraisers, consider setting up donation forms for different classes or individual fundraisers.
Just as building different forms for different clubs can streamline bookkeeping, creating different pages for different fundraisers or individual classes can simplify getting each class’s money to the proper place. Separating the elementary classes’ candy fundraisers from the middle schoolers’ spring dance fundraiser could be a hassle if you used just one form but splitting them up could save you a ton of work.
Offer a way for people to pay for services or other expenses on unique forms
What other transactions do your students and families need to make? Could you simplify your general donation form to make it easier for people to use?
If you have expenses that families regularly pay online, think about if their experience would be better if those payments were handled on a different form. Based on your school’s programming, you might also explore building unique forms for things like:
- Tutoring payments
- Payments for class field trips
- Purchasing items like school planners or other materials
- Support for class celebrations or gatherings
- Or whatever else you need!
Whatever you do, make all your families’ transactions as easy as possible
When people land on your form to donate or to pay for a service, it shouldn’t be a confusing process! Avoid complicated forms, long lists of restrictions, or confusing options by building unique forms for each major type of transaction you process. Your families— and your bookkeepers! —will thank you.
Looking for more resources on school fundraising? Look no further than the resources below!
- 49 Simple & Successful Fundraising Ideas for Kids
- Fundraising for Education: Your Guide to Doing Virtual Fundraising Right
- Need school fundraising software? Request a demo.
Qgiv works with all kinds of schools from small elementary schools to major universities. We can work with you too!