Add Ease to the Ask
Add Ease to the Ask
April 11, 2006
By Abny Santicola, editor, FundRaising Success Advisor
When it comes to Web site fundraising, it's important to get the basics down. First thing, says John Murphy, vice president of professional services for Kintera, is getting people to your site. Search-engine optimization -- using keywords that best describe your organization so that when potential donors conduct a search via a search engine, your site is picked up by search-engine spiders -- is a good start. "If someone's searching about your cause, it's going to bring up your Web site," Murphy says. Even more basic is including your organization's URL in any and all correspondence you send out.
Another method of getting more people to your site is a "friend ask a friend" concept where donors set up events or donation pages that drive friends and family to your site to give.
Once visitors are on your site, Murphy stresses, it's important to make it easy to give, especially by having "donate now" buttons in prominent places. In terms of the actual fundraising page, where donors input their information and donation amount, Murphy says most of his company's clients use a single page to collect all of the billing, credit card information and personal information etc., in one easy step. "It's basically a single-step type donation where people can just come to the page, fill out the information, fill out an amount and submit," he says.
Another approach is using a "shopping cart" process where donors add items to a cart and then "check out." While the shopping-cart process is more time consuming and gives donors more opportunity to bail on giving, Murphy says it has its benefits. What you gain with the shopping cart is an opportunity to gather extra information about the donor by including other questions about your newsletter or about how the donor heard about your organization.