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Nonprofit Management
November 19, 2021
Whether you’re aspiring to be an executive leader, get promoted into a director’s position, or even launch your own nonprofit—rarely there are clearly defined pat...
Read MoreAboutHow to Grow into a Nonprofit Leader
Nonprofit Management
October 28, 2021
A strong leadership team is vital to the success of any nonprofit organization—without it you risk reduced productivity, delayed decisions, and low morale.
Read MoreAbout2021 Employer Guide: Nonprofit Leadership Development
Nonprofit Management
October 14, 2021
As employers continue to strategize for the future—paving the way for flexible work models and creative retention tactics—many are seeing permanent cha...
Read MoreAbout2021 Nonprofit Workforce Trends Infographic
Nonprofit Management
September 24, 2021
Nonprofit employers nationwide are living through a fundamental transformation in the way they work and the pace at which employee priorities are changing.
Read MoreAbout[Webinar Recording] UST Live: The Future of the Nonprofit Workforce
Nonprofit Management
September 14, 2021
Are you curious to discover how nonprofits have pivoted strategies in response to COVID-19 and how this pandemic is causing permanent change across the sector?
Read MoreAbout2021 Nonprofit Sector Report: Pandemic Impact on Workforce
Nonprofit Management
August 31, 2021
Risk management is defined as a discipline for dealing with the possibility that some future event will cause harm and nonprofit risk comes in an endless number of forms&...
Read MoreAboutThe Importance of Nonprofit Risk Management
Nonprofit Management
July 16, 2021
This quick reference guide highlights key findings from last quarter's most popular content—which focused on innovative nonprofit sustainability strategie...
Read MoreAboutUST Quarterly Nonprofit Digest: Nonprofit Sustainability Strategies
Nonprofit Management
July 07, 2021
UST recently published an eBook that discusses how the global pandemic challenged nonprofits in ways that were unprecedented at that time
Read MoreAboutNonprofit eBook “Preparing for Future Crises” Uncovers Strategies to Ensure Nonprofit Resiliency
Nonprofit Management
June 25, 2021
In the latest rendition of UST Live, we were joined by guest moderator, Jenny Berg of the Leadership Council for Nonprofits, where we welcomed thought leaders from across th...
Read MoreAbout[Webinar Recording] UST Live: Strategies to Identify Board Diversity
HR Management
June 18, 2021
While the nonprofit sector is dedicated to serving those in need, without encompassing diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) into their governance and operations, they risk...
Read MoreAboutDiversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Nonprofit Organizations
Nonprofit Management
June 14, 2021
With the rise of smartphones, social media and other digital channels, nonprofits now have more tools available to them for engaging donors than ever before.
Read MoreAboutFour Best Practices to Improve Donor Engagement
Nonprofit Management
May 27, 2021
Nonprofits across the country were forced to pause, pivot and make remarkable changes to their in-person events last year due to the unprecedented circumstances of COVID-19....
Read MoreAbout2021 Virtual Event Best Practice Tips
Nonprofit Management
April 16, 2021
In today’s talent-based economy, an organization’s workforce is one of its most important tangible assets. Despite its importance, this asset is often not carefully planned,...
Read MoreAboutA Workforce Strategy Designed to Help Push Your Nonprofit Forward
Nonprofit Management
December 18, 2020
This year, UST has been busy creating a plethora of timely and relevant resources designed specifically to help the nonprofit sector navigate the many unknowns presented by ...
Read MoreAboutUST's Most Popular 2020 Content
Nonprofit Management
December 02, 2020
This short 30-minute on-demand webinar features tools and resources that can help nonprofit employers streamline HR processes and stay compliant with state and federal regul...
Read MoreAbout[Webinar Recording] Supporting Nonprofit Sustainability During a Crisis
Nonprofit Management
November 04, 2020
As we continue social-distancing—heavily relying on virtual resources—large-scale events have taken on a whole new look and feel.
Read MoreAbout2020 Virtual Event Best Practice Tips
Nonprofit Management
October 15, 2020
UST's latest interactive webinar series, "UST Live," brings the collective expertise of reputable nonprofit leaders to you—live&#x2014...
Read MoreAbout[Webinar Recording] UST Live: Developing a Sustainable Strategy for 2021

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HR Knowledge
November 10, 2021
One of the main reasons employees leave their jobs is because they don’t feel appreciated—causing many to question their work and often looking for a job elsewher...
Read MoreAboutCreative Ways to Celebrate Your Team
HR Knowledge
November 05, 2021
Question: What are some typical examples of employee discipline?
Read MoreAboutHR Question: Disciplining Employees
HR Knowledge
October 22, 2021
Flexible work arrangements have been around for decades but now that we’re beginning to see the new era of work take shape it’s more important than ever to support and manag...
Read MoreAboutBest Practice Tips for Successfully Managing a Remote Workforce
HR Knowledge
October 08, 2021
Question: Generally, our employees are "always on," meaning they check work emails and communicate with co-workers/supervisors via smartphone during all hour...
Read MoreAboutHR Question: Overwhelmed Employees
HR Management
September 29, 2021
Hiring new employees can be time-consuming, costly, and stressful. Pre-employment assessments can be useful in determining whether or not a potential new hire is a good fit ...
Read MoreAbout2021 People Risk Management Toolkit
HR Knowledge
September 10, 2021
Question: Can we require remote employees to have childcare?
Read MoreAboutHR Question: Remote Employees and Childcare
HR Knowledge
August 24, 2021
One of the biggest challenges nonprofits are faced with is the "great resignation" sparked by the pandemic—where employees are burnt out and pursu...
Read MoreAboutNonprofit eBook: 3 Essential Practices to Cultivate a Positive Employee Experience
HR Knowledge
August 13, 2021
Do OSHA's regulations and standards apply to the home office?
Read MoreAboutHR Question: OSHA Regulations and the Home Office
HR Knowledge
August 06, 2021
Turnover is a natural part of any nonprofit organization’s life cycle, and employee offboarding should be handled with the same degree of importance as onboarding a new empl...
Read MoreAboutBest Practices for Employee Offboarding
HR Knowledge
July 30, 2021
Question: As we begin to return to work, if an employee is out of the office due to sickness, can we ask them about their symptoms?
Read MoreAboutHR Question: Asking Sick Employees About Their Symptoms
HR Knowledge
July 23, 2021
Recruiting and retaining top performers is crucial to the success of any nonprofit and when done right, reaps the best reward—employees that support and strengthe...
Read MoreAboutUST Recruitment and Retention Toolkit
HR Management
June 18, 2021
While the nonprofit sector is dedicated to serving those in need, without encompassing diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) into their governance and operations, they risk...
Read MoreAboutDiversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Nonprofit Organizations
HR Knowledge
June 04, 2021
As states begin to loosen their social distancing restrictions, nonprofit employers are beginning to strategize a return-to-work plan while staying compliant with state, loc...
Read MoreAboutUST Workforce Re-Entry Toolkit
HR Knowledge
May 21, 2021
People-related risks within an organization can range from bad hires and misconduct to harassment and lack of diversity in the workplace.
Read MoreAboutPeople Risk Management Toolkit
HR Knowledge
May 17, 2021
When looking at the current work environment, we can see that it requires flexibility, being open to new skills and navigating new ways of working.
Read MoreAboutPreparing Your Nonprofit Workforce for the Future of Work
HR Knowledge
May 06, 2021
Question: An employee has reported that another employee made a racially insensitive comment in the break room in front of several people.
Read MoreAboutHR Question: Handling Racially Insensitive Comments
HR Knowledge
April 29, 2021
Welcome to the inaugural issue of UST's Quarterly Nonprofit Digest, a bite-sized overview of the employer strategies, sector statistics, and resources that UST share...
Read MoreAboutUST Quarterly Nonprofit Digest: Employee Engagement Strategies
HR Knowledge
April 12, 2021
Question: We are looking to hire millennials in an effort to create a more dynamic workforce. What are other companies doing in terms of workforce standards, benefits, polic...
Read MoreAboutHR Question: Creating a Dynamic Workforce
HR Management
March 25, 2021
You only get one shot at a first impression... In an effort to help nonprofit leaders strengthen their employee onboarding process—making new hires feel welcome, ...
Read MoreAboutEmployee Onboarding Toolkit

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Online Fundraising Best Practices for the New Year (and Beyond)

   

According to the 2021 Benchmarks Report, the average nonprofit donor contributed an average of $167 in 2020—this per-donor metric was slightly lower than 2019. The increase that did occur was largely driven by more people giving rather than people giving more. While the global pandemic forced nonprofits to take their in-person events such as, conferences and fundraisers online overnight and propelled most into digital transformation at a pace we thought would take years, not all was lost—there were many positive outcomes.

A year later, it’s safe to say that virtual events and online giving are here to stay. Nonprofit professionals have embraced online fundraising since 1999 when the first “Donate Now” button was released by a project of the Tides Foundation—shaping best practices with 20+ year of innovation and experimentation. It’s more important than ever to understand your donors; what they care about, why they give, their communication preferences, and which social media channels they prefer. Equally important is that you use sustainable fundraising practices that drive predictable fundraising growth.

Below are some key strategies and best practice tips to help your nonprofit build its digital fundraising with low effort and high return.

  1. Don’t be afraid to invest. This might sound counterintuitive to your long-term fundraising strategy but spending a little more on the tools available to you will result in big payoffs later. Consider updating your website to ensure mobile optimization is SEO friendly or invest in integrating your CRM with your donation page—one that has custom branding, donation tiers, and recurring gift options to help increase your ROI.
  2. Utilize Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Organic searches are often one of the largest traffic sources to your site. Add quality SEO content to your website with relevant topics to the sector and incorporate these SEO strategies into your blogs, annual reports and videos.
  3. Don’t miss out on the opportunity social media provides. Encouraging people to share your content increases your ranking with Google’s own SEO algorithms and can yield huge returns. Moving your organization to a top search placement means more organic traffic—and donations. Better yet, it costs you nothing and only requires your time and commitment to keeping your website updated.
  4. Nurture, Nurture, Nurture. Once someone has engaged with your content, retargeting is a form of engaging with potential donors and bridging the gap between capturing their attention and getting them to click that “donate” button time and time again.
  5. Communication is vital to the success of your fundraising strategy. Utilize automated email campaigns that keep your audience engaged and coming back for more. You can create different campaigns for when someone signs up for your newsletter or makes their first donation—the possibilities are endless.
  6. Make giving a great experience for your donors. You want the process to be easy and convenient. Donation pages should be simple, optimized for mobile giving, and ask for the minimal amount of information necessary. No greater experience exists than a monthly giving option that provides the ease of filling out a form once and forgetting about it.   
  7. Create a tribute giving program. Organizations and individuals alike often look for ways to make donations in honor or on behalf of someone else—a popular way of giving during the holidays. According to the Global Trends in Giving Report, 33% of donors worldwide give tribute gifts.
  8. Don’t forget the power of email fundraising. Despite the popular myth that email is dying, the truth is that email use is growing. When the pandemic hit and businesses started working from home, mail came to a quick halt as no one was in the office to receive it and email became the way to communicate. Donors need reminding—reminders to give and WHY! Even more impactful than the reminder to give is sharing the impact of their donation which is often what inspires them to give again.
  9. Prioritize crowdfunding and peer-to-peer fundraising. Crowdfunding promotes a specific project while peer-to-peer fundraising is when individuals help raise money through their own fundraising pages and invite their friends and family to donate funds to support a specific cause. This type of fundraising is most popular with endurance events (marathons, etc.) and political or emotional campaigns (Black Lives Matter, etc.).
  10. Create an engaging thank you page. The best time to capture the attention of donors is while they’re waiting for a confirmation that their payment has been received. Create a “Thank You for Your Donation” landing page where you share how their donation helps your mission—perhaps with an impact video, invite them to follow you on social media, and offer ways for them to get more involved with your organization.  

The most important thing you can learn about online fundraising is that it should be sustainable and predictable. Outside of COVID-19, online fundraising has been driven by the release of new technology and social networking websites over the years, so ask yourself if you have the right tools in place to create a fundraising strategy that is both successful and sustainable.

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