Thu, November 16 2006

Who gives money online?

Katya Andresen's avatar

Author, Robin Hood Marketing

Filed under:   Fundraising essentials •

Network for Good did a study (get it for free here with 10-second registration) that found:

Online givers are young (38-39 years old) and generous, giving several times more than offline donors on average. 

Men and women give online in equal numbers.

Virtually all of online givers (96%) have given to charity before, but a sizable proportion (38%) is new to online philanthropy.

Online giving is tracking to the trends of online shopping and banking, and it is the avenue of choice for donors during disasters.

Most people give online during the week, during business hours – most commonly, between 10am and noon.

New York is the most generous state for online giving; Mississippi and North Dakota are the least generous.

Giving online follows the same “long tail” phenomenon seen in online sales of books and music.

Most online giving goes to disaster agencies, followed by animal-related causes.

Top searches are disaster related, plus “children,” “cancer,” and “homeless.”

Small organizations benefit from listings on aggregation sites; at network for good, half of dollars go to small-medium sized charities.

People say they give online because it’s easier than writing a check and a fast way to respond to disasters.


The highly recommended Blue Sky Collaborative blog posted the following interesting, provocative and funny comment on our research, and it’s worth sharing:

The growth of online giving is in fact not a surprise at all.  Neither is the fact that online giving follows the same trends as online banking.  Here we see the 10 year rule in effect.  Results from a 1996 Booz Allen Hamilton Internet Banking survey showed the average cost of different types of bank transactions:

Online transaction:  $.01
ATM transaction:  $.27
Telephone transaction:  $.54
Branch Transaction:  $1.07

10 years later, which is about the lag-time for the nonprofit sector to adopt technology and innovation, NFG gives us data on average costs per type of donation.

Online Donation:  $.05
Telephone Donation:  $.63
Direct mail solicitation:  $1.25

The 10 year gestation period for technology to enter the nonprofits sector may in fact be an opportunity for entrepreneurs.  Think about it.  If you’re at a startup in mobile technology or internet TV, or some other hot market right now and things don’t work out, YOU DON’T HAVE THROW EVERYTHING AWAY!  Just zip it up and launch it again in 2016 targetting nonprofits.  Coming in 2017 - Nano for Nonprofits, Mobile Donations, Nonprofit Robots that can fill out 990’s while shaking down major donors.

 

 

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