This guide shows how you can use the internet to achieve your fundraising goals, including:
Improve your fundraising skills
Most people who raise funds have little training and it is often not even in their job description. Whatever your experience and skills the web can help you learn to fundraise like a pro. Help can be sought from:
Find news and information about funding
Whilst there is no lack of information online about funding that may be available, it isn’t always easy to find. Get to know one or two key sites and use bookmarks to keep track of what you find. One of the best is Funding Central (www.fundingcentral.org.uk/default.aspx ) where you can sign up for email alerts and the Charity Commission website is brilliant for looking up trusts and foundations (www.charitycommission.gov.uk/). Useful local sites include:
Data that supports your fundraising
The best funding applications include compelling data that demonstrates a need for your work. Neighbourhood and locality based organisations can use the Office for National Statistics to download Census data and other public information. You can also access useful statistics from Church Parish Spotlights.
Raising funds online
Online fundraising is often considered the preserve of large national charities but as more and more people are willing to donate or spend money online there are opportunities for charities and causes of all sizes. Web-based fundraising can help you:
Get a website that works
Don’t get stuck with a website that you can’t update. Whatever your fundraising strategy, your website is a showcase for your work and must be accurate, up-to-date and well-presented.
Take money online
A large proportion of the population is now happy to spend money online, so make sure you’re ready to receive it and use an online payment system to take funds and add Gift Aid (for registered charities). The top three services charge different fees, so do your homework and make sure you’ll be receiving enough funds to cover your set up and running costs:
The Paypal ‘Donate’ button and schemes like Everyclick earn you money every time one of your supporters uses their search engine or shops using their portal. Anecdotal evidence is that most people find that only a very small proportion of supporters change their search engine so, unless you have thousands of supporters, you are not likely to earn much from it. If you do go with these schemes always read the small print as some take a large chunk of the deal, for example EveryClick takes 50%.