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11+ Tips to Collect More Donations on Your WordPress Site

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Written By: author image Natalie Jones

As a nonprofit, you need to collect donations anywhere you can. Your website is a powerful fundraising tool because it’s always running, always serving visitors, and always ready to take payments. You don’t have to make phone calls, throw parties, or schmooze with donors.

It’s important to maximize your website’s fundraising performance as much as possible to reach your goals. Implementing a few easy changes to your site will allow you to receive donations on autopilot indefinitely.

In this article, we’ve rounded up several valuable strategies to help you boost donations on your site.

Table of Contents

1. Design a Professional Website

You might think that donors would rather see you spend your money on your cause rather than a fancy website, but that isn’t the case.

Donors want to see that you have a modern, professional face. Ironically, they want to see that you have a bit of money because it means other people donate to you as well (a weird form of social proof, but donors aren’t the only group persuaded by the appearance of wealth).

Notice how Charity:Water uses a professional design and striking photos to collect donations. That kind of photography isn’t easy or cheap, but it converts.

Collect more donations

Fortunately, you don’t need to spend tens of thousands of dollars on custom development to have a professional website. With a platform like WordPress, a solid theme, and the right combination of plugins, you can build a functional website all on your own.

2. Make Your Donation Page or Form Easy to Find

If someone comes to your website to donate, they shouldn’t have to search for the right page. Make your donation button easy to find on every single page. Donors should be able to access it the moment they decide to donate.

The World Wildlife Fund puts their donation buttons right in the header. It’s also a bright contrasting color so you can’t miss it.

Collect more donations

Furthermore, your donation button should take the potential donor straight to the donation form. If they’re willing to click on “Donate,” it means they don’t need much more persuading. Any additional steps can actually hurt your conversions.

WP Simple Pay, the #1 Stripe payments plugin for WordPress that lets you accept online donations without having to set up a shopping cart, allows you to easily create custom, distraction-free landing pages for your donation payment forms.

3. Sell Merchandise on Your Site

Real goods aren’t technically donations (because the buyer gets something in return), but they’re still great tools to raise money for your cause. People are willing to overpay for goods if they know the proceeds will be used for a good reason.

And truthfully, people like bragging about their philanthropy. They want other people to know how generous they are. A “free” T-shirt in exchange for a donation satisfies their ego.

PETA is a great example. They have an entire store on their site that raises funds for their cause.

Collect more donations

Fortunately, selling merchandise on your charity’s website is simple these days. There are two ways to go about it.

  1. Buy merchandise and fulfill it yourself. You’ll need an ecommerce tool like WooCommerce or Shopify to take orders through your site. You can also use a WordPress plugin like WP Simple Pay to easily create payment forms for merchandise without having to set up a shopping cart.
  2. Let someone else handle fulfillment. Use a print on demand vendor to make and ship products when your donors/customers place an order.

What should you sell? That depends on your cause and your target donors. Sell products that people will keep around and use for a long time. Put your logo on everything.

4. Feature Your Top Donors

People like being recognized. They like the celebrity status they can buy with their donation. This is why you see donors’ names on plaques in hospitals and museums. You can offer the same recognition on your website.

Celebrate your top donors by featuring them on your website. You could…

  • Create a page for top donors with names and stories.
  • Write blog posts about donors and why they contributed to your cause.
  • Record videos of your donors, including their stories and history.
  • Post donor testimonials in your sidebars and footers.
  • Include donor stories on your landing pages as social proof.

That said, don’t surprise your donors with a feature spot. Include the feature spot in the donation package so they know it’s part of what they get in return. This will entice more people to make a donation.

5. Design Landing Pages for Donor Segments

Segmentation is one of the most popular tools in online marketing. Essentially, segmentation is the practice of splitting your audience into groups and creating messaging for each group.

For example, let’s say someone comes to your site expecting to donate $500. They reach your donation landing page and see suggested donation amounts of $25, $50, and $100. They hit the $100 button even though they would have donated more.

In this case, it would be smarter to send that person to a special landing page made just for people like them. Perhaps the suggested donation amounts would be $500, $750, and $1,000. Since this donor intended to donate $500, they can hit the button on this page.

To learn how to create suggested donation amounts, read our full guide.

You can segment users any way you like. You might segment them by location, age, or reason for donating. Tag them in your email marketing tool or CRM so you can send the right content and offers to each segment.

6. Offer Multiple Payment Options

Some people like PayPal. Some use Amazon or Google Pay. Others like to use their credit card. It’s important to accept multiple payment options if you want to maximize conversions. Not only does this make your nonprofit more accessible, it also makes people feel more comfortable with the transaction.

If you use WP Simple Pay to accept online payments, the plugin offers support for Google Pay, Apple Pay, and Microsoft Pay.

Additionally, offering several non-card payment methods is a great way to reach more donors by providing them with their preferred way to pay based on their location. Supporting multiple currencies also expands your reach and globalizes your cause.

WP Simple Pay provides 135+ currencies to help you prevent your donors from having to cover conversion costs.

7. Be Transparent About Money

Lots of donors want to know how you’ll use their money. In fact, this is the deciding factor for many people. They won’t donate if they don’t understand how you spend money (they’ll assume you’ll do something inappropriate with it).

Explain what percentages of their money goes toward your cause, fundraising, administrative costs, etc. Break it down as much as you can. Don’t forget to update this section as your financials change.

WP Simple Pay lets you pass on the additional 3% Stripe processing fee to your donors, and even breaks down each fee for them to see exactly what they’re being charged for.

Remove the additional 3% fee! 

Most Stripe plugins charge an additional 3% fee for EVERY transaction
…not WP Simple Pay Pro!

8. Keep Your Donation Page Simple

Once a donor has decided to open his or her wallet, every step you put in front of them is an obstacle they have to climb over. You can improve your conversions by clearing the way.

The most impactful way to keep things easy is by simplifying your donation payment form. Skip the unnecessary questions like “title,” “company name,” or “where did you hear about us?” You can gather those data points later.

Name. Email. Payment information. Donation Amount. That’s all you need to take their donation, so that’s all you should ask for.

See a demo of how you can create and customize several different types of donation payment forms for your site using WP Simple Pay here.

Here are some more ways to keep your donation page simple:

  • Limit your images and copy to only what’s necessary. Opt for less content that’s more impactful, rather than lots of content that doesn’t mean much.
  • Remove the menu, header, footer, and sidebar. Once the donor is on the donation page, their only option should be to donate.
  • Keep your page title short, engaging, and powerful. Talk about the benefits of donating (e.g. “Change the Lives of 10 Kids for Less Than a Cup of Coffee”).
  • Use headings and bullet points in your body copy so it’s easy to read.
  • Offer suggested donation amounts so donors don’t have to think.
  • Optimize your page for mobile so it looks clean on any device.
  • Keep the page easy to follow. Your visitors should know where you want them to look. They should be able to follow the page’s flow easily.

9. Use Targeted Popup Campaigns

Using targeted popup campaigns on your site is an effective way to increase donations.

With a conversion optimization toolkit such as OptinMonster, you can create exit-intent popups, site-wide floating bars, and more to draw attention to your donation pages and payment forms without having to use any code.

OptinMonster lets you easily set up the display rules for your campaigns in addition to the dates and times of when you’d like them to run on your site.

See our step-by-step guide on creating targeted popup campaigns for your nonprofit site.

10. Set Up Recurring Donations

WP Simple Pay lets you offer your donors the option to subscribe to weekly, monthly, or yearly recurring payments to increase your long-term funding. Providing recurring payment options is a great way to anticipate upcoming donations so you can plan ahead.

11. Automate Communication Tasks

Automating communications with your donors saves you time and helps your organization notify them about important announcements or updates. It also allows you to keep them informed about possible orders they have made on your site.

Adding donors to your mailing list and collecting a valid phone number during checkout are both ways to ensure you’re staying in touch with your donors. Luckily, WP Simple Pay integrates seamlessly with third-party plugins like Uncanny Automator so you don’t have to manually add donors to your mailing lists. Uncanny Automator works with Drip, ActiveCampaign, and more.

WP Simple Pay also offers phone number validation for on-site payment forms so you can automate SMS notifications.

Bonus: As Always, Optimize

The best tip we can give you to maximize donations on your nonprofit site is to test every element of your page for performance, especially your donation page. Make simple adjustments and measure your new results. Use A/B testing for your experiments. Every tweak you make to increase donations will compound over time.

That’s it! We hope this article has helped you learn more about how to collect more donations on your site.

If you liked this article, you might also want to check out our guide on how to use email campaigns to collect donations.

What are you waiting for? Get started with WP Simple Pay today!

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