Fundraising is the lifeblood of most nonprofits. But it definitely has its challenges… Sometimes, nonprofit revenue streams dry up, like donations during economic recessions or government grants during certain administrations. Other times, funding sources are simply insufficient to meet the organization's needs.
So how can nonprofits guard against such fundraising shortfalls? They can find new and diverse sources of revenue (also known as microphilanthropy)! Here are 6 creative ways for nonprofits to earn funds:
- RoundUp App: Supporters are often hesitant to make $50 or $100 donations. But most would readily donate a few cents here or there. That was the thinking behind the RoundUp App, which automatically rounds up users’ credit or debit card transactions and donates the change to nonprofit organizations. Nonprofits can tap this new stream of recurring donations by registering (here) and urging supporters to use the app. With more than 108.6 million credit card transactions per day in the US, just think of the fundraising possibilities!
- Amazon Smile: Amazon generates $4,722 in sales every second or about $283,000 every minute. Wouldn’t it be nice if nonprofits could get a cut? Well thanks to Amazon Smile, they can! Nonprofits only need to register (here) and then invite supporters to shop at smile.amazon.com. For every eligible purchase, Amazon Smile gives 0.5% of the price to the customer’s chosen nonprofit. This has allowed the program to donate an astounding $215 million to nonprofit organizations since 2013. Now that’s a reason to smile!
- Just Giving: Canvassing supporters is one way to raise money. But supporter lists are only so long… To remedy this problem, nonprofits can ask supporters to canvas their own contacts using a tool like Just Giving. Just Giving lets users set up a “peer-to-peer” fundraiser and share it on social media “in just a few minutes." It is a sure-fire way for nonprofits to reach more prospective donors and drastically increase their fundraising revenue!
- Opinions4Good (Op4G): Partnering with Opinions4Good, a leading market research organization, is a great way for nonprofits to earn funding by allowing supporters to become digital volunteers. When a nonprofit registers as a partner, they are able to invite supporters to join on behalf of their organization and take paid market research surveys. Each time a supporter completes a survey, between 25% and 100% of their earnings goes back to their chosen nonprofit. Opinions4Good currently has over 300 different partners across the US and has already raised nearly $500,000 in donations for these organizations to date! Register your nonprofit by clicking here.
- Thinking of You App: Telling someone you’re thinking of them can brighten their day—and it’s even more meaningful when coupled with a donation to their favorite cause! The Thinking of You app allows users to do both. Nonprofits can capitalize on the app by registering (here) and encouraging supporters to send “thoughts” or “thought chains." In a thought chain, the user sends a thought and “tags others to do the same, creating a never-ending chain of kindness”– and donations!
- Budge: Remember the ice bucket challenge that went viral in 2014? The chilly challenge ultimately raised $220 million for ALS research, proving that competitions can be incredible fundraisers! Nonprofits can organize their own challenge or call on supporters with Budge. The Budge app lets users challenge friends and family to just about anything (like “stop smoking for a week”). Whoever loses has to make a “pre-set microdonation” to a selected charity. But don’t be fooled – these small gifts can really add up!
So here’s the “RoundUp”: nonprofits can add new revenue streams in many ways. In doing so, they not only increase their fundraising – but also boost their resilience to economic shocks, changes in government etc. Plus, it often takes just 5 minutes for nonprofits to register (supporters take care of the rest)!