Fundraising in a digital era has never been more relevant than it is today. Technology offers a way to connect with donors when physical distancing hinders traditional fundraising outlets. We are living in a time when work from home, virtual meetings, and online classes are commonplace. More and more people are shifting their transactional, social, and entertainment activities online. It’s easy to see why online fundraising ideas for schools are gaining in popularity.
Online is where it’s at
One resource recently reported that 9 out of 10 adults are now online. The research also shows that nearly three-quarters of Americans own desktop or laptop computers, half own tablet computers, and nearly 81% have smartphones. Schools recognize these trends and are finding ways to take fundraising online! According to Non-Profit Source, 56% of the country’s public schools have at least one donor appeal on its site. Indeed, one of the easiest things you can do is to set up a donation page on your website. The convenience of online giving offers parents and easy way to support your school, and can replace or complement what you typically do offline.
Variety of online fundraising ideas for schools
Based on your fundraising goals, there are plenty of virtual options to choose from, and you don’t need to be a tech wizard to implement them. Many schools are already registered with shop-to-earn websites like AmazonSmile, a simple way for parents to support your school every time they shop. You can take your auction online with auction management software from companies like BiddingOwl. Try Facebook fundraising, selling branded merchandise, crowdfunding, or hosting online giving days. Companies like OneCause and MightyCause offer comprehensive software to host your digital campaigns. They handle the technology side of the fundraiser so you can focus on building your fundraising ideas and promoting them in your school community!
Extend the reach of your fundraiser by selling online
PTO and PTA groups, tired of traditional product fundraisers that no longer excite parents – magazine subscriptions, cookie dough, wrapping paper – find a growing array of online fundraising ideas for schools that require much less work to implement. Compared to other school fundraisers, online programs require less overhead costs and less management from parent volunteers. With digital transactions, it’s easy to track progress and share your cause via social media, text message, or email. Even more exciting, online options provide a way for those that don’t live nearby to support your cause. With the rise of online fundraising technology, schools can set up custom sites and sell online to customers across the country.
Companies like SilverGraphics Art Fundraising offer online shops to supplement or even replace your catalog fundraiser, with extended ordering and home delivery options. SilverGraphics will set up a private ecommerce site featuring your students’ artwork. Parents shop for custom art keepsakes from the comfort of their own homes. Remote shopping makes it possible for grandparents, aunts, uncles, and friends to get in on the fun.
Three tips for successful online fundraising
Tip #1: Create a compelling connection
Fundraising online can feel impersonal. So how do you make a connection with potential donors? Why would someone want to support your school? What’s in it for them? This is still the most crucial thing to consider and communicate in a compelling way. Tell donors how proceeds will be used. Share images and tell a story of why your organization is worth supporting. People will be more likely to donate if they really understand why you need to raise money.
Tip #2: Optimize for mobile donations
Americans today are increasingly connected to the world of digital information while “on the go” via smartphones and other mobile devices. A growing number now use smartphones as their primary means of online access at home! Be sure that whatever platform you use is built with a mobile-first approach.
Tip #3: Harness the power of social media
Today around 7 out of 10 Americans use social media to connect with one another, engage with news content, share information and entertain themselves. For many users, social media is part of their daily routine. Roughly three-quarters of Facebook users visit these sites at least once a day. Social media is an important platform to promote your fundraiser that encourages sharing among donors’ friends and families across social networks.
Do you want to be more efficient, reach more people, and raise more money? An online fundraiser has little overhead and gives you the freedom to share your cause with anyone with just a few clicks of the mouse!