Wed, January 06 2010

Preliminary figures on 2009 online giving

Katya Andresen's avatar

Author, Robin Hood Marketing

Filed under:   Fundraising essentials •

My colleague Kate Olsen at Network for Good reports:

After what promised to be a gloomy year in the philanthropic community, Network for Good, the Internet’s leading nonprofit giving platform, is pleased to report positive news about online giving in 2009.  With big growth in charitable contributions in December, 2009 ended on a high note, demonstrating that even in tough economic times, people still make giving a priority.  Network for Good saw record increases in both the total volume and dollar amount of donations made at year-end and throughout the year.  Below are some statistics and trends from 2009.

December 2009 Highlights

Online Donations Up vs. December 2008: The Network for Good giving system processed $31.4 million in online donations in December, a 25% boost compared to December 2008.  The total number of donations processed increased 31% to 205,617. 

Year-End Giving Had Big Impact: December giving comprised about a third of the total dollar value and a quarter of the total number of donations made in 2009.  Fourth Quarter giving comprised over half of the total dollar value and number of donations made in 2009.

Average Donation Amount Flat: The average donation amount through the Network for Good giving system in December 2009 remained relatively steady compared to last year at $153, only a 4% decrease from December 2008.  Nonprofits using Network for Good’s Custom Donate Now pages raised an average of $185 per donation in December, a slight 2% decrease from December 2008.

Calendar Year 2009 Highlights

Online Giving Milestone:  Network for Good set a new organizational record by processing over $100 million in one year.  The total dollar value of donations made through the Network for Good giving system totaled $112.7 million, a 58% increase over 2008.  The large boost in 2009 donations is largely attributed to strong growth in three areas: social networking sites like Causes on Facebook, campaign related giving through America’s Giving Challenge and Razoo’s GiveMN day, and more small and medium sized nonprofits migrating fundraising activities online.

Average Donation Amount Down, Volume Up: While the dollar value of donations was down in 2009, the total number of donations processed went up 92%, as people made more, smaller charitable contributions in a down economy.  The average donation in 2009 decreased 22% to $92 from $112 in 2008.  A strong fourth quarter helped raise the average donation for the year.  After a sharp decrease in the average donation amount in the first quarter 2009, compared to 2008, the average gift rebounded steadily. 

Nonprofits Fared Better Than Expected - Online:  Nonprofits using Network for Good’s Custom Donate Now pages raised an average of $118 per donation in 2009, a 14% decrease from the $137 average in 2008.  However, the number of donations made through these pages increased 52%, to offset the effect of the recession on small and medium sized nonprofits’ fundraising appeals. 

Network for Good is cautiously optimistic for 2010 as the economy begins to recover, but is encouraged by positive 2009 results in the wake of the recession.  The organization is committed to growing the virtual philanthropic community through innovative technologies to support online giving and training to help small and medium sized charities become more efficient and effective in their online fundraising endeavors.

About Network for Good (where I work)

Network for Good, an independent nonprofit organization,  makes it easy to support any charity, anywhere online by offering simple, affordable and effective online fundraising services, including donation processing, email outreach and online surveys.  To foster continued growth in online fundraising, Network for Good provides free tools and expertise in online giving through the site so that small and medium sized charities can see bigger returns on their online marketing efforts.  Network for Good has processed over $300 million in donations for more than 50,000 nonprofits since its 2001 founding by AOL, Cisco and Yahoo!. 

  • Comment: (6)   


It’s really nice blog about Online Marketing Tools for Your Business and good to share this online giving Knowledge. Online marketing is really gaining rapid popularity. Even i used to promote my site and sell my product online through and my business is really growing.

Posted by Cristino  on  01/08  at  07:50 AM

Thanks for this post.  One thing that we should all learn from this is to not panic before the facts are truly in.  During this recession I have continually been amazed at the “experts” predicting huge fall offs in charitable giving.  Do we not read history?  Historically during recessions charities hold their own.  While some struggle others do well.  Perhaps there is a deeper reason than simply the recession.  At any rate this should teach us to wait for all the data to come in before we jump to conclusion.

Posted by Mark Brooks  on  01/08  at  06:15 PM

A recent Ipsos Reid poll studying the online giving habits of Canadians might be of interest to you…online donations are on the rise here, but giving methods and charities of choice are very much regionally defined. But one thing is clear….health related charities here have done the best job of establishing and stewarding relationships with donors, that then translate into online donations. If you are interested in a comparative perspective, check out:

Posted by Anne Melanson  on  01/09  at  03:23 AM

At the beginning of 2009, my non profit predicted our fundraising numbers will be down. We decided to use’s online donation software. We created an online donation page. To our surprise our fundraising numbers were up a small amount from 2008. We felt our regular donors liked the new and easy to use software. Also, we were able to reach more people having the materials online. Best of luck all.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  01/13  at  08:52 PM

In my work with wealthy investors I have seen only a minor decline the amount of charitable giving. I don’t think predictions of a big fall off in charitable giving are going to turn out to be correct.

Posted by Dan  on  01/15  at  12:25 AM

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Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)  on  02/09  at  08:19 AM

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