People often forget their checkbooks at home but rarely forget their cellphones when heading to Mass. To keep your church relevant and up with the times, it is important to bring your donation base to an online platform rather than relying on checkbook donations. Here are ten ways to help keep your church receiving consistent donations.
- Create a Mobile-Friendly Donation Page: Although your website might have a great donation page set up, check to make sure it loads properly on smartphones and it is easy to access. Many times, online donation pages can be too much for phone’s mobile sites and will kick the donator right out, and the process will quickly become frustrating for them. By creating a mobile App page, you will be able to guarantee there won’t be an issue for your donors. Having mobile-friendly pages can create a streamlined process of giving for your community. Look into an electronic giving solution with mobile-friendly pages for your needs.
- Create a Mobile App: As long as you can keep your App up to date and relevant, there isn’t any reason you shouldn’t create a mobile App. There are many benefits to having a mobile app; your entire congregation will be able to know what is happening and when, but it will also make it easier and safer for members to donate through a secure network.
- Host a Church-wide Fundraiser Right After Your Sunday Service: Something as simple as a pancake breakfast right after mass is a great option. You won’t need to rent space, and you will have guaranteed visitors to at least stop by since majority of your congregation will be at Mass Sunday morning.
- Offer the Option of Recurring Donations: When shifting towards online donations, one great benefit is you can ask members if they would like this same donation to take place monthly. There are many obvious benefits for your Church if a member does a monthly recurring donation, for example, it is a donation you can count on and expect. You will also be notified if they do cancel it so you can be aware of that too instead of waiting for a check to come in the mail that might have never been sent.
- Make Sure It’s Someone’s Job to Handle Your Church’s Donations: Finance teams exist in almost every Church which usually covers the counting of donations that come in, where the donations are going to be spent and making sure the bills are paid. However, rarely is it someone’s job to oversee how the Church is going to raise money. There needs to be a position in your Church for the chairman responsible for creating fundraisers.
- Be Transparent with Where the Donations Are Going: Let members know if the donations will be going to an upcoming mission trip your Church has planned, or let them know you are raising money for new pews, no matter how little the project may be, people usually like to know what they are going to have a part in creating.
- Start Thanking People: This seems so simple yet such a small gesture can go a long way. The decision to donate to a church is a huge deal for someone who has never done it before. A handwritten card thanking that person for donating to your church will make the donor feel appreciated and supported. Someone who donates the same recurring amount will probably appreciate a phone call every so often thanking them for their donation and checking in to see how everything is going in their life. These little gestures cost your church next to nothing but speak volumes to your members.
- Plan a New Givers Event: Track everyone who donated for the first time in the past 12 months and invite them and their families to a movie night or a nice but simple dinner. These will likely be the newest members of your congregation, and it will be a great way to make them feel appreciated and invited. To help make this tracking easier, make sure your online donation page has an option to answer ‘Yes or No’ to the question of, “Is this your first time donating to our church?”.
- Ask and Listen to your Congregation About Their Needs: Your church needs to make sure they are communicating with their members about what they feel the church is missing or where they would like to see the donations go.
- Help Members Manage Their Finances: Many people would love to give but simply cannot due to living paycheck to paycheck and not really sure how to budget money properly. Host a seminar for those in your congregation interested in learning how to correctly manage their money and help them get ahead. By doing this, more of your congregation will be able to donate in the future, and many will also appreciate the help and that the Church was looking out for their wellbeing.
There are many things your Church can do to help raise money through the congregation, a lot of these won’t cost a lot to follow through with but will make a large impact down the road.