6 Online Fundraising Ideas That Will Increase Donations

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April 30, 2020

The world is fast-moving and requires us to adapt our marketing strategies and get creative to stay ahead of the game. If your fundraising event has been affected by recent gathering restrictions, don’t immediately throw in the towel. With more people online now than ever before, your donors are at your fingertips. The key is effectively translating your online fundraising ideas into a reality.

So, how do you get started? Consider the original event. Can it be directly moved online? If not, is there another way you can inspire action by engaging your supporters online?  You can move almost any event online nowadays. You just need to think outside the box!

Take a look at some of our favorite, out-of-the-box online fundraising ideas we rounded up below. Adapt your original event to one of these online campaigns, or come up with something new!

Virtual Paint Class

Speak to donors’ creative side by hosting an online Paint Class! 

Recruit a local artist to lead a lesson on a live streaming platform (check out our recommendations here) while your registered attendees tune in. Offer beginner and advanced classes with two donation types: a Paint Package Donation includes all the art supplies needed for the event. A smaller donation will give donors access to the event, but they have to source their own supplies.

Sell tickets ahead of time, until the day of the event. Turn it into a quarterly fundraiser, or just a one-time thing!

Virtual Bake Sale

Have a local bakery sponsor the event, or sponsors can pull out their favorite dessert recipe. Offer a range of sweets from cookies to full pies so you can tier donations. Make sure you put some thought into the packaging to take it to the next level. Deliver prizes to your supports (we make it easy to find contact information from your supporters. Just download the donor list from your dashboard, and you’ll find all the info you need to) or, if donors are local, set a pickup date and time and have them come to you. What a sweet way to raise money!
Sale fundraiser

Virtual Silent Auction

Move your silent auction online. Even without the fancy dinner, auctions can still be fun! The key here is to have a good spread of auction items. Keep the auction open for days or host a live virtual event and let donors watch as winners are named in real time. 

Mobile text-to-give is a huge help in engaging supporters and effectively raising donations. Assign specific keywords to each auction item, and donors can text the keyword for the item they want to place bids. 

Pro tip: set an agenda to put items up for auction at particular times so people can tune in when they are most interested.

Need inspiration for awesome raffle prizes? Check out our guide here


Virtual A-Thon

Just because we can’t all run together, doesn’t mean we can’t still raise money for the cause! Keep your supporters moving by taking pledges online and having supporters fulfill their pledges from afar.

Engage donors even more by encouraging them to share pictures and videos of their runs, send merch ahead of time (shop for that here), or even broadcast a live stream to encourage them along the way.

50/50 Raffle

If you’re going for simple, a 50/50 raffle is the answer. 50/50 raffles have the lowest overhead, so it’s a good option if you don’t have access to robust sponsor resources.

How does a 50/50 raffle work? It’s super simple! Sell raffle tickets and collect donations. The raffle winner gets 50% of the total donation pot. The nonprofit keeps the rest.

If you want to mix it up a bit and engage supporters more online, try a 50/50 raffle with a twist. Some people are getting creative with how they are drawing winners. For instance, an animal shelter filled a ball pit with 500 numbered plastic balls and let a playful puppy jump in and pick the winning ball/number! It was all done on Facebook Live while supporters watched. What a great idea!

Just make sure you know the raffle laws where you are, and layout the rules and regulations for your supporters.

Learn more about how to run a successful 50/50 raffle here.

Online Basket Raffle

Themed goodie baskets are a great way to raise funds and have prizes for everyone. Raffle off different sized baskets of the same theme, like a sports-themed basket, or put together spa baskets, food baskets, and cooking baskets.

Make sure to use your resources and recruit local sponsors to help provide the goods. You can easily list the items in the baskets as well as feature a picture beside each one for max presentation online.

Again, mail out the prizes or set a pickup date and time for the winners. Learn more about how to host a knockout raffle here.

Want to see Eventgroove in action?

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