How to solve the challenge of donor distraction

Charlie Davenport

It’s a familiar experience. You pick up your phone during a spare moment, scroll through your social media feed and are reminded of a friend’s upcoming charity challenge and callout for donations. Inspired, you click through to her fundraising page with the best of intentions and start to enter your details.  But before you have time to complete the transaction, you’re interrupted. You put your phone down. And just like that, the moment is lost.

In the modern world, charities aren’t just competing with one another for donors’ attention - they’re competing with life itself. People are busy and easily distracted, not to mention increasingly impatient with technology. Our expectations are high (sometimes unreasonably so). If a page loads too slowly, provides a poor user experience or involves one too many steps to complete the process, there’s a high risk you’ll lose that donor before you’ve even started.

It stands to reason then, that if we can make the online donation experience quicker, simpler and more satisfying, we’re much more likely to convert potential donors into actual donors. Even better, if donors walk away having had a wholly positive experience, they’re more likely to return and contribute to your cause again and again.

As the creators of a popular online fundraising platform, the team at Everydayhero understands this space better than most - and appreciates just how important it is to get this piece of the puzzle right.  This month, they revealed their new online donation form, which has been redesigned and streamlined in order to remove the barriers to donating, improve the user experience and make the whole process faster, simpler and more rewarding for donors.

Here’s what’s changed and why:

  1. It’s easier to understand and navigate. Everydayhero’s user research found that donors often felt overwhelmed when faced with too many decisions and steps. The new form separates the process into four simple stages: choosing the amount (simplified by providing four donation handles to choose from), inputting personal info, adding a personal message, then finally entering payment details.
  1. It heroes the donor’s impact. It’s no secret that donors are more engaged when they can see the impact their donation is making. The new design highlights how their donation affects the fundraiser’s totals as well as its impact on the cause in a simple and effective way, leaving the donor with a warm, fuzzy feeling and the sense that they are actually making a difference. Job done.
  1. It’s purpose-built for mobile. Nearly one in five donations come from mobile users[1] - a figure which we can expect to keep on growing. Understandably, then, clunky mobile experiences can be potentially disastrous when it comes to online giving. Everydayhero’s new form has been natively designed for mobile devices to support giving anywhere, anytime.
  1. It offers more visibility for your brand.  There are now more opportunities for charities to customise the form with your own logo and branding - from the first screen right through to the new donation receipts. This allows you to maximise awareness of your own brand and benefit from all of the positive feelings the donor associates with their giving experience.
  1. It incorporates some nifty improved features. Donor Cover is now clearer to understand, thereby encouraging donors to fully offset transaction fees and lessening the financial burden on charities themselves. Improvements have also been made to regular giving and donor opt-in features, enabling you to stay in contact with donors more easily.
  1. It’s quicker to complete. This is the big one. The simplification of steps and data entry makes the donation process faster, which means fewer drop-offs and more satisfied donors.

So does it work? The proof as they say, is in the pudding: in Ireland, where these changes were implemented earlier this year, completion rates have increased by ten per cent.  In New Zealand, since the form’s launch at the start of July and at the time of writing, 81% of donors chose to cover the fees for the charity (vs 72% previously) and the average donation is up 42% compared to the same time last year.

All of this indicates that donors are responding positively to Everydayhero’s new and improved online giving experience, which will drive more fundraising revenue for British charities.



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