How to Get Online Visibility for your Non Profit Fundraiser

You have a wonderful charity organization with members who are hard-working and devoted to the cause. However, your charity fundraising programs are limited to your neighborhood, region or state.

Woman on Internet

How can you get the word out to those who would be interested in supporting your group across the world? I have three words for you—the World Wide Web!

The Internet is the ideal way to send news of your charity organizations goals and needs worldwide. Internet fundraising is fast, up-to-the-minute and it allows you to reach your charity purse to willing givers who would otherwise not even know you existed.

Setting up an Online Charity

So how do you go about setting up an online charity?

With any non-profit fundraising organization, there are governing rules; well online fundraising is no different. The National Association of Attorneys General requires non-profit organizations to register any online fundraising efforts. Now the rules vary from state-to state and from city to city, so it’s best to do some research before you set up Internet base.

If you disregard the rules and set up a non-profit fundraising campaign online without filling out the proper registration, it can very well result in hefty fines—and sometimes even the revocation of your fundraising rights and your rights to raise funds as a non-profit organization.

The state laws that govern charitable non-profit organizations are known as Charitable Solicitations Regulations. Under these laws, any nonprofit is required to provide the state with annual financial reports (which are oftentimes made public).

This is obviously for public protection, in order to protect the public from fundraising scams. On the bright side, complying with Charitable Solicitations Regulations will serve to protect your nonprofit's reputation.

However, don’t let this scare you off. We have done our research with the help of the National Association of State Charity Officials (NASCO), who have some helpful hints and tips for those of you who aim to bring your fundraising efforts to the Web.

Electronic donation is a multi-step process where you can solicit support, and donations easier, faster, and more securely towards your campaign. Online fundraising ultimately allow you to focus more time, energy, and donor contributions towards your bottom line—raising funds for your charity.

Benefits of Moving your Fundraising Mission online

You have extended your list of potential donors – Suddenly you are no longer limited to your neighborhood or city.

You can enlist volunteers on a world wide basis – The Internet is a global communication tool, so along with extending your potential donor base, you are suddenly looking at the possibility of a greater network of volunteers, and the possibility of hosting charity events in multiple locations worldwide.

Web 2.0 Fundraising – Thanks to Blogs, online communities, wikis, and networking tools like Facebook, you can educate the world on your charity and their mission and needs.

For example, use Wikipedia to start a definition on your charitable organization, or look to Facebook to set up a member’s page where you can share needs and efforts with those interested parties worldwide. Your nonprofit may even qualify for free advertising from Google Grants.

Online donations tools – Many charity organizations still use the old cash donation or mail a check donation method. With an online charity Web site, you can set up a giving platform that collects donations online. The donor will, in some cases, get an automatic receipt that can work as a tax break come tax season.

Satisfied donors – In most cases, online fundraising means increased donor satisfaction, meaning that you provide your donors and supporters the opportunity to donate at their convenience (not only when you knock on their door during dinner).

Satisfied volunteers – The same goes for members, online fundraising campaigns makes their lives easier as well, by reducing the time and abuse associated with phone solicitations and snail mail campaigns.

Increased times for donated – Online fundraising is a 24 hour a day, 7 day a week affair. So your lines are always open and accepting donations, which is a convenience for your customers and volunteers.

No paper chaos – Online donations are made electronically via credit card, which means that you’re volunteers aren’t left dealing with mounds of paper and sorting through multiple checks.

Electronic donations are immediately deposited in your charity account, which means less time on the part of volunteers having to chase down default and unfulfilled pledges.

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