Digital marketing has changed fundraising. For nonprofits, the Internet is the great equalizer. It’s given every organization, regardless of size or resources, a chance to reach people. Which is probably a big part of the reason there are more nonprofits in existence than ever before.
But with the benefits have also come some challenges. Most nonprofit marketers are still working to get a handle on digital marketing. They’re still striving to develop proven best practices for their websites, emails, social media, blogs, SEO, mobile, and other online efforts.
That’s why it’s important to keep up with the latest benchmarks in online fundraising. A great resource for that is the annual Benchmarks Study produced by M+R. Today, we’ll look at some telling stats from the 2014 M+R Benchmarks Study, and what they mean for your nonprofit moving forward.
About the 2014 M+R Benchmarks Study
This study collected data about email, fundraising, online advocacy, website traffic, social media and mobile programs from 53 U.S.-based nonprofits for the calendar year of 2013. It analyzed results of over 2 billion emails sent to over 41 million subscribers; $324 million in online donations from 5.6 million online gifts; and 7.5 million advocacy actions.
Notable Nonprofit Online Fundraising Numbers from 2013
Here are some numbers that stuck out to us from the 2014 M+R Benchmarks Study. These stats give you a glimpse of the state of online giving in 2013. We strongly recommend you check out the full study (available as a free download here), which is filled with a lot more valuable data.
14% increase in revenue from online giving for nonprofits from 2012 to 2013
14% increase in the average number of online gifts from 2012 to 2013
2% increase in average online gift amount from 2012 to 2013 (varies greatly by sector)
25% overall growth rate for online monthly giving to nonprofits in 2013
16% of all online revenue for nonprofits came from monthly giving in 2013
Nearly 1/3 of all online fundraising revenue comes from email
$17 was the average revenue for every 1,000 fundraising emails delivered by nonprofits
That works out to a return of 1.7 cents for every email delivered
$29 was the average email revenue for mid-size nonprofits for every 1,000 fundraising emails delivered
$59 was the average email revenue for International Groups for every 1,000 fundraising emails delivered
16% average increase in monthly website traffic for nonprofits from 2012 to 2013
0.69% of all nonprofit website visitors made a donation in 2013 (varies greatly by sector)
$0.60 was the average value of a nonprofit website visit
15% of people who made it to a nonprofit website’s primary donation page made a donation
Key Digital Marketing and Online Fundraising Efforts for 2014
These numbers continue to show the consistent incline of online giving we’ve seen for years now. They also serve as a reminder that, while nonprofits have come a long way with their digital marketing and online fundraising efforts over the years, there’s still a lot of room for improvement.
A few key efforts nonprofits should continue to focus on based on the results above:
- Encouraging and promoting online giving through all marketing channels
- Making monthly giving a key focus of online fundraising efforts
- Optimizing email fundraising for a better response and return
- Finding effective ways to drive more visitors to your nonprofit website
- Improving website design and flow to better draw people to your donation page
As the Web becomes a more and more important channel for nonprofit fundraising, it’s important for organizations to focus greater attention (and resources) on digital marketing efforts to stand out from the nonprofit pack and continually develop (and improve on) best practices.