Digital fundraising for associations – successfully collecting donations online

Digital fundraising and digital donation campaigns for clubs and associations

How can nonprofits get more visibility online, too, and thus run digital fundraisind? We explain what it takes for digital fundraising for non-profits.

Digitization has an impact on our entire lives. Associations are also faced with the challenge of making use of the new, digital framework. In the area of fundraising, for example, a lot has happened in recent years and the digital possibilities have developed rapidly. Since it’s not so easy to keep track of all the innovations, here are a few tips to get attention:

Visibility on the website: lightboxes

Visibility is important for a fundraising campaign. And what better way to do this than to include this appropriately on your own association’s website? The website is often the first point of contact for members and other interested parties. Including a so-called lightbox on the homepage helps to draw attention to the fundraising campaign. Lightboxes are pop-up graphics that appear after a few seconds of visiting a website. Whether the lightbox appears only on the home page or on other pages can be configured manually.

One-time donation vs. monthly donation

While a few years ago the one-time donation was often the standard, today the trend is towards monthly donations. There are various tools for this, which can be integrated on the association’s website, for example, and make it possible to offer more easily tolerable donation amounts, such as €10 monthly versus a one-time, annual donation of €120.

Responsive Design

Media usage has changed dramatically in recent years, and mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets are playing an increasingly important role in our everyday lives. This is also true in the area of online donations. Already in 2017, around one in four online donations was made on a mobile device. For this reason, it is important that the website as well as mails and newsletters are designed responsively so that they are displayed correctly on mobile devices.


Nothing is more off-putting to users than a website that is not clearly laid out. This also applies to the design of the donation form: The process should be clearly and attractively presented and include descriptions. If necessary, divide the entire process into several user-friendly steps.

Relevant key figures

To gain insights into user behavior, the use of analytics tools can be useful. Don’t worry, you don’t have to evaluate 20 different KPIs every week and analyze them in detail. It’s often enough to pick out a few relevant metrics, such as the abandonment rate, and analyze them over a period of several months to derive improvements for future marketing.

3 days to go: countdowns in emails and on the website

If you want to convey to users that the set goal of the project/project is getting closer, it makes sense to include a countdown clock on the website or in the newsletter. It can help convey the urgency of the campaign to recipients.

Facebook: Personal fundraising campaigns

Donating is also possible on social media platforms. In 2017, Facebook introduced the feature that allows users to ask their friends to donate to a specific, pre-selected organization on an occasion such as their birthday. Smaller organizations in particular can use these personal fundraising campaigns by drawing attention to this option among their circle of acquaintances, thus activating and mobilizing a team of supporters.

Presence on various crowdfunding platforms

It can make sense for associations to establish presences on digital platforms such as, Startnext or Kickstarter in order to benefit from their level of awareness and reach. In this way, it is possible to gain one or two additional supporters for the campaign or project.

Bereits seit ihrer Kindheit von der Digitalisierung und ihren Möglichkeiten fasziniert ist Simone Dogu nun seit vielen Jahren als Projektmanagerin und IT Consultant in diesem Umfeld unterwegs. Um ihr Wissen weiterzugeben lehrt sie zudem an verschiedenen Hochschulen und engagiert sich ehrenamtlich in Vereinen und Verbänden auf Bundesebene.

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