5 Follow-Ups for Better Online Donor Retention
According to the recently released 2013 Charitable Giving Report by Blackbaud, this past year was a strong year for fundraising. Charitable giving grew 4.9 percent, and online giving grew 13.5 percent, accounting for 6.4 percent of total giving in 2013. Grab the full report or check out the infographic if you want to dig in to the details.
The best news of all might be the fact that every sector had year-over-year fundraising growth — something we haven’t seen for quite some time.
But despite our success, we must continue to push forward in 2014. If the nonprofit sector wants to thrive for decades to come, I suggest we turn the spotlight to donor retention.
The shocking truth is that close to 75 percent of your new donors will not return after they make their first donation to your organization. That’s not a statistic anyone could be proud of.
If a business had customer retention rates under 30 percent, it would soon be out of business because the cost of acquiring a new customer is significantly higher than that of retaining an existing customer.
But nonprofits settle for donor retention rates of 27 percent. In fact, we’ve settled for declining donor retention rates for the past 10 years, watching them fall from 33 percent to 27 percent over the past decade. Something has to change.
Experts have sounded off, and there has to be a better way. We can’t continue doing the same things year after year, expecting different results. Right?
In the spirit of improving donor retention rates in 2014, here are five no-brainer follow-up techniques to help you retain new online donors.
Deliver instant gratification
Remember that online donors live in “Internet time,” which is to say that they prefer immediate execution and delivery.
Find a way to feed that need for immediate gratification. Send an email or social-media response, whichever directly corresponds to the channel used for giving, that acknowledges the gift and shows an immediate effect.