Is This You? Are You Sure?
I tried another format: $XX, filled out the payment information again, clicked “Submit” and got the same message.
One more time. I tried XX.XX, with no dollar sign, filled out the payment information again and clicked “Submit,” and the payment finally was accepted. Now, why wouldn’t the Web site say something about the correct format for the amount? And why would the “Amount” drop-down list present amounts in a format that’s different from the way a donor would be required to enter it in the “Other Amount” box? And why say, “Amount must be entered” when it would be clearer to say, “Amount must be entered in proper format” and list that format?
Little thing, perhaps. But it might be enough to turn off a potential donor who’s pressed for time or easily frustrated. Why take the chance?
Another problem with this transaction: Once it was completed, the page that came up said something like “Thank you for your donation.” Polite enough, but there was no acknowledgement that I had just committed to a sustainer program and nothing noting when the monthly deductions would be made.
I used a link on the site to e-mail the organization’s donor-support department, asking for confirmation that I had, indeed, just joined its sustainer program — a program, by the way, that had a name of its own, so it’s not like the organization is unfamiliar with proper procedures for
bringing monthly givers on board.
Three days later I got a response that included confirmation of my enrollment, an explanation of when the money would come out, and a “thank you.”
Other than that response to a donor-generated e-mail with a
specific question, I got no acknowledgement from the organization beyond the initial, sketchy “transaction completed” page.
OK, so my monthly contribution isn’t a fortune, but I did commit to the organization for the long haul and probably will never even think to put a stop to the recurring donations.