Online Fundraising: How NFPs can Raise Money with Digital Payments

When it comes to charitable donations, nearly 60% of Australians donate on the spur of the moment, the Australian Government’s Giving Australia 2016 report found. But as fewer people step out with cash in their pockets, they often find themselves unable to give on the street even when they want to.

However, dwindling small change in people’s pockets isn’t the only problem not-for-profits (NFPs) face. Finding ways to accept donations using innovative means that align with modern payment preferences is the bigger challenge for many NFPs.

Let’s take a look at what the digital payments landscape in Australia holds for charities faced with the need to cut loose from cash or cheque payments.

What are the Latest Charity Payments Solutions?

There is a multitude of payment options available to charities who need to fundraise – both locally and internationally. Latest digital payment technologies not only offer a new channel for charities to raise money, they can also create new ways to engage donors to keep them coming back.

Similar to what we’re seeing in other industries, digital payment alternatives such as PayPal, ApplePay, and Google Wallet can help charities accept payments on the go. More revolutionary payment methods such as contactless-payments-enabled connected screens (which have already made their debut in Australia) are making cashless donations easier and more engaging for donors.

These mobile digital payment methods have their own set of benefits. Let’s look at each one:

Digital wallets and mobile payments make giving easier, faster and secure

Australians are big on the adoption of digital payments and over 7 million Australians have active Paypal accounts, according to the Paypal Australia website. This, combined with the fact that we are eager adopters of contactless payments, means that supporters are more likely to give when they’re presented with convenient payment options.

The other barriers that digital wallets help overcome are data entry fatigue (no one loves filling long forms) and delayed inspiration (if you didn’t get that donation on the street, there’s little chance the donor will pay later using their desktop or laptop). Digital wallets are also a secure means of collecting payments and every single transaction can be tracked.

Recurring payment methods take giving beyond ‘tap to donate’

Recurring payments work well for ongoing campaigns that could do with a ‘set-and-forget’ boost. Whether you’re asking people to donate as little as $5 per month or pay a larger sum per year to sponsor a child or find a cure for AIDS, recurring payments are a flexible option to encourage giving.

Recurring payments for NFPs also bring down staff and admin costs, acting as an affordable fundraising method for charities.

Connected screens are next big trend in cashless donations

Connected screens, with built-in payment readers and branded audio-visual content, can be placed on street corners, malls, office buildings, markets and more. Anyone wanting to donate can simply tap their credit card, mobile phone, smartwatch or other smart wearables on the screen’s payment hotspot.

Frictionless payment methods, leveraging impulse giving, creating trust with branded content, and secure payments are just some of the advantages of connected screens for your NFP organisation.

The Big Benefits of Omnichannel Payments for NFPs

As a NFP organisation in Australia, you have to jostle for space. There are, after all, over 54,000 registered charities in the country, according to the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission.

For organisations looking to cut through the noise offline (on the streets, at events, in malls or offices) and online (on social platforms, email, and search engines), omnichannel fundraising can considerably bolster both brand awareness and donations. This is because the omnichannel approach fuses advocacy, marketing and fundraising to create a stronger presence in the market.

While multi-channel fundraising focuses on direct marketing for individual campaigns, omnichannel fundraising marks the convergence of paid media, earned media and direct marketing to nurture donor relationships and keep them coming back.

In a similar vein, omnichannel payments can help charities make the most of different giving experiences by creating unique payment touch points – both online and offline. So, your NFP can help donors stay connected, offer a robust brand experience regardless of channel, and amass actionable data to inform your future fundraising ideas.

What Should NFPs Expect from their Digital Payments Solutions?

As an NFP, the success of every fundraising campaign is vital to furthering your cause and helping those in need. If you want to harness the maximum value from your campaigns, these are some key features your digital payments solutions provider must have:

Flexible ways to accept payments: It’s important to be sure that your digital payments provider is able to offer several different ways to accept payments – be it donations on the street, via Visa or MasterCard cards, using contactless payments, direct debit, or SMS.

  • Features that make your campaigns smoother

Expired credit cards or declined payments can result in lost opportunities. This is what makes payment management an important piece of your fundraising puzzle.

  • Security

Level 1 PCI compliance is a must-have to ensure that your charity stays within the law and your customer data is safe at all times, and you are protected against online fraud.

  • Batch payments

As a charity, every resource is precious. Make sure that your chosen payments solution offers automated batch processing so you can cut back on manual processes and reduce errors.

  • Easy integration

Your vendor should provide the functionality to quickly and easily bolt on your payments solution to your bank account, CRM and custom fundraising pages.

Staying current on these features also holds numerous benefits for your donors, the most important of which is making giving to charity easier!


Author: Victoria Galloway, Bambora APAC’s Technical Copywriter.

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