Who wants more donations?

February 20, 2014

Here’s an easy way to get more donations:

Ask for a smaller, recurring gift, instead of a larger one-time gift.

Why? Because monthly giving program data consistently shows that donors who sign up for recurring donations result in more donations over time than do those who gift individual donations.

We recently helped Friends of the Earth and Jewish Voice for Peace expand their monthly giving programs through the use of a customized “lightbox” that overlays their donation forms.

Increase donations with a lightbox prompt

When donors complete the donation form and click on the submit button, they are prompted to either update their donation to a monthly gift or continue with processing a one-time donation. Both of these options are given equal prominence, presented in an elegantly-designed lightbox.

A recommended monthly donation amount is calculated using a script that checks the original one-time donation amount then presenting a monthly gift amount that’s approximately 20 percent of the original amount.

Easily update and reuse

The beauty of these scripts is that it’s simple for the organization to maintain, update, and reuse the same lightbox on other donation forms.

Website administrators simply paste a small bit of code into the HTML editor at the top of any donation form.

The script includes a variety of variables that can be updated, such as text, images, background color, and even the formula that should be used to calculate the monthly gift amounts.


Report on results

To help organizations track the results from the lightbox, we include a distinct tracking code that sends information to Salsa and Google Analytics.

These codes are used through Google Analytics events and Salsa reports to monitor lightbox usage and the potential abandonment rate on the form.

Raise more money

How successful is this, you wonder?

In tests with Friends of the Earth, we saw a 4.3 percent conversion rate of people who chose the recurring option.

This accounted for an increased “annual” gift from $100 to $240.

Based on their average gift of $70 and this 140 percent increase from the extra revenue from the recurring gifts, they’re receiving an average addition of about $5,300 per year!

Jewish Voice for Peace was even more successful with a conversion rate of 10.53 percent and a 140 percent increase in annual amounts.

Considering their average gift of $59 and total number of donors during a year, they stand to net an additional $11,886 by using the lightbox for a full year.

Would you like more donations?

Contact us! We’d love to talk with you about how a lightbox can boost the fundraising power of your donation forms.

By Ira Horowitz

With 15 years’ experience, Ira is an expert in nonprofit online communications and online fundraising. His work has resulted in increased funds and resounding supporter engagement for hundreds of organizations.Ira oversees our project management team and works with clients to provide our clients with the best possible final product. He also manages all of our strategic engagements and helps guide nonprofits to determine their long-term strategy goals for online communications.