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What is donation management software?
Donation management software helps nonprofit organizations collect, track, and distribute funds; maintain donor records; and network with donors during fundraising campaigns. The software assists nonprofits in analyzing donor information and creating communication strategies, such as email marketing campaigns, as needed.
The benefits of donation management software
- Identification of trends in donor behavior: Donation management platforms capture large volumes of data related to an organization’s donors, advocates, and volunteers. This data can significantly improve a nonprofit’s understanding of the areas of interest of its present donor base and current trends and opportunities. It also provides insights into how to target prospective donors.
- Improved access to donor information: Cloud-based donation management platforms can be accessed on mobile devices, ensuring on-the-go data availability.
- Timesaving: This software helps users save time by automating donation management processes, such as scheduling reports for staff and management.
- Better data collection and analysis: Donation management software collects and imports existing records into the system. This makes it easier to define segments among donors based on level of involvement, preferences or tendencies, and potential for investment, in turn increasing the efficiency of communication strategies.
Typical features of donation management software
- Donation tracking: Track and view a detailed history of donations made by contacts and members.
- Donor management: Track and maintain donor relationships throughout various stages/activities, such as interaction history and previous outreach.
- Dashboard: Create intuitive graphs and charts to track statistics and metrics.
- Online giving: Provide an online platform for members and visitors to make donations.
- Payment processing: Accept, record, and reconcile financial transactions.
- Pledge management: Track donors’ commitment to donate in the future.
Considerations when purchasing donation management software
- Number of users: Many donor database providers price their software to accommodate nonprofits of all sizes. In such cases, organizations end up buying a solution that can’t support all of their users. Therefore, number of users should be an important consideration during a software purchase.
- Pricing: Since cost is an essential factor for nonprofits, software price needs to be carefully considered before zeroing in on a tool. Some platforms also have hidden costs; therefore, buyers must double-check the price to ensure their budget isn’t exceeded.
- Data security: Donor-related personal information forms a chunk of the data stored in a nonprofit’s database, and nonprofits are responsible for keeping this data secure. So, it’s essential to look for platforms with security features, such as SSL encryption, that will safeguard donors’ payment information and personal details.
Relevant donation management software trends
- Blockchain increasing accountability and transparency in donations: Of late, many nonprofits have been accused of corruption and money laundering, resulting in a lowering of public trust. Blockchain can help restore people’s faith in nonprofits by automating the donation process, increasing accountability through traceable milestones, and offering donors more visibility into how their funds are being used.
- AI transforming donation management through improved donor engagement: Nonprofits often own massive volumes of data, and AI ensures this institutional data is used optimally . With features such as self-writing emails based on donor preferences, AI can help save time and improve donor engagement.