Summer is just beginning and most people are turning their thoughts to days on the beach and backyard BBQs. Nonprofits, faith-based organizations, and churches, however, should be thinking about the month of December. Believe it or not, summer is the perfect time to plan and prepare for the holiday giving season.

Why Prepare Now?

Fiscal Year-End

The end of the fiscal year for nonprofit organizations is June 30. As you review the finances for the previous year, compare them to last year’s budget. Identify where your organization might be able to cut costs and determine which fundraising campaigns were most successful. It is the perfect opportunity to take a closer look at your donations and fundraising during the previous holiday season.

Potential Donors Are Preparing Now

Although they may not give until December, most holiday season donors begin researching charities as early as September. That means if you wait until October to prepare for the holiday giving season, you may have already missed a large portion of your target audience.

How to Prepare

Online Preparation

Online giving trends continue to increase year after year. The website for your church, nonprofit, or faith-based organization will likely see online traffic increase on Giving Tuesday. If your website isn’t prepared for the increase in traffic or people are not able to donate easily, they may decide to donate to a different organization.

Simplified Giving Options

One of the most important factors in online giving is to make it easy for your supporters to donate. The summertime is the perfect to review your website and make any changes.

How many clicks does it take for someone to donate? The best answer is “as few as possible.” A large, colorful donate button should be prominently displayed on the homepage of your website. You can even consider having it on every page in the same position. That way as customers read more about your organization if they feel inspired by the work you are doing they’re only a click away from giving.

Mobile Giving

While reviewing your website, review how it appears in multiple browsers, tablets, and smartphones. Not only should your website be optimized for mobile viewing, but it should also have a cohesive feel and style across each platform.

In addition to mobile internet usage, another form of mobile giving is on the rise: Text-To-Give. The success of Text-To-Give is largely due to how easy it is for supporters to support causes they believe in. For example, through the ClearGIVE platform, an organization can send a text appeal to all supporters. In order to donate, supporters reply with the amount they would like to donate. A confirmation and thank you message are sent automatically.

Holiday Events

If your church or nonprofit organization holds annual holiday events, now is the time finalize details and set up your registration process. Waiting too long to book your event can mean that the your preferred vendors are not available.

The earlier you can confirm the date, the earlier your supporters can put it in their calendars. Consider offering perks or discounts for early registration and then make sure your registration process is simple and organized.

How We Can Help

By preparing for the holiday giving season over the summer, you can take steps to ensure you build on past successes and make any necessary changes. If your website isn’t inspiring people to give, it may be time for an upgrade. Rather than try to reinvent the wheel, consider whether or not ClearGIVE can help.

Through our online giving platform, mobile kiosks, customizable registration forms, and simplified reporting, we can help your organization prepare for the holiday giving season. We know churches, faith-based organizations, and nonprofits are working hard to improve our communities. Our mission is to make it easier for you to do just that. At ClearGIVE, we’re powering the greater good.

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