14 Online Fundraising Ideas for Nonprofits

In today’s digital age, it’s critical for nonprofits to fundraise effectively online. However, coming up with an effective and engaging fundraising idea can be time-consuming and complicated. Here, we explore 14 different online fundraising ideas for nonprofits that can help you engage supporters and raise more money, no matter how large or small your organization may be. We’ll also take a look at how a service like FrontStream can provide the tools and support necessary to make your winning idea a success!

Online Fundraising for Nonprofits: 14 New Ideas to Try

To help you out with your fundraising efforts, here are 14 online fundraising ideas that your nonprofit can use to achieve your goals.

1. Crowdfunding Campaigns

A crowdfunding campaign is a great way to get people involved in and excited about your nonprofit’s cause, and raise money simultaneously! If you’ve never crowdfunded anything before, here’s how it works: people donate money to your campaign online, and in return, they may receive perks or rewards to “sweeten the deal”. For example, if someone donates $50 to your campaign, they may receive a thank-you card or a T-shirt. Using the right online crowdfunding platform can make it easy to set up a campaign and start collecting donations, and can also make it convenient for people who might never otherwise hear about your campaign to learn about you before making a donation!

2. Social Media Fundraising Appeals

No list of online fundraising ideas for nonprofits would be complete without mentioning social media strategies. Social media is a powerful tool that can be used to reach a large audience and engage potential donors, especially those who might never otherwise hear about your cause. By using platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, you can raise awareness for your cause and solicit donations. For example, you can create posts or videos explaining your nonprofit’s mission and how donations will be used. You can also use social media to promote fundraising campaigns or events.

3. Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Platforms

One relatively new fundraising idea that’s especially relevant to nonprofits is peer-to-peer fundraising. Peer-to-peer fundraising platforms  allow individuals to create their own fundraising campaigns on behalf of your nonprofit. These platforms provide a great way for supporters to get involved in your cause and engage their personal networks. Additionally, they can be used to raise funds for specific projects or programs.

4. Online Auctions or Raffles

Online auctions or raffles are another great online fundraising idea for nonprofits looking to engage supporters and raise funds. You can solicit items from businesses or individuals to be auctioned off or raffled off, and then promote the event through social media and email. Getting the right tools on board makes the process of setting up an online auction or raffle simple and painless.  For example, FrontStream's BiddingForGood is a cloud-based platform filled with easy-to-use tools that can help you launch your auction site in as little as an hour.

5. Virtual Events or Galas 

Next on our list of online fundraising ideas for nonprofits is a relatively recent phenomenon: virtual events! If your nonprofit is looking for a fun and engaging way to fundraise, consider hosting a virtual event or gala. In addition to helping raise funds for a good cause, they’re also a great way to bring large groups of people together, no matter where they might be located! You can promote the event through social media and email and then sell fundraiser tickets or sponsorships. You can also use this opportunity to showcase your nonprofit’s work and impact. And with FrontStream, you can easily manage your virtual event and track your progress.

6. Online Donation Forms or Pages

Make it easy for donors to give to your nonprofit year-round by setting up an online donation form or page. You can customize the form or page to fit your brand, and then share it through social media and email. You can also use donation management tools to track donations, manage donors, and more.

7. Recurring Giving Programs

Another great online fundraising idea for your nonprofit is to use recurring giving programs. Setting up a recurring donation program makes it easy for donors to give on a regular basis, even when you’re not staying top-of-mind with them by hosting an event or a drive. Recurring giving works well because it’s predictable and easy to manage. Benefits include increased donations, engagement, and retention.

8. Instagram Challenges

One of the simplest online fundraising ideas for nonprofits comes courtesy of a well-known social media platform: Instagram! Instagram challenges are a great way to engage your followers and raise awareness for your cause. By hosting an Instagram challenge, you can encourage people to donate, learn more about your cause, and take action. To get started, choose a theme or hashtag for your challenge. Then, create graphics and posts that explain the challenge and how to participate. Be sure to promote your challenge across all of your social media channels and use a unique hashtag.

9. YouTube Fundraising Videos

YouTube is a powerful platform that can help you raise awareness and funds for your cause. By creating engaging and compelling fundraising videos, you can reach a wide audience and inspire people to donate. To get started, create a script or storyboard for your video. Then, film and edit your video. Finally, upload it to YouTube and promote it across social media.

10. Giving Days or Weeks

Next on our list of fundraising ideas for nonprofits is the concept of “giving days/weeks”. During giving days or weeks, you can solicit donations and offer special prizes or incentives for giving. For example, you may offer a matching gift for donations made during a short campaign window. To promote your giving day or week, create a landing page on your website and share it across social media. You can also partner with other nonprofits or businesses to help promote your campaign.

11. Matched Giving Programs

Matched giving programs are programs in which businesses match employee donations to nonprofits. This is a great way to increase employee engagement and get more people involved in your cause. To start a matched-giving program at your workplace, reach out to your HR department.

12. Sponsorship Opportunities

Another great online fundraising idea for nonprofits is offering sponsorship opportunities on your website or during your campaign. This is a great way to get businesses involved in your cause while also raising money. Sponsors can either make a one-time donation or agree to donate a certain amount for each item sold, such as t-shirts or tickets.

13. Ambassador Programs

An ambassador is someone who agrees to help promote your nonprofit to their network. In exchange, they may receive special recognition or a small incentive, such as a discount on products. By becoming an ambassador, individuals can help spread the word about your campaign and encourage others to donate. Ambassadors can also help with social media outreach and other promotional activities.

14. Digital Marketing 

Last but certainly not least, number 14 on our list of online fundraising ideas for nonprofits is digital marketing. By using creative and effective digital marketing techniques, you can reach a wider audience and encourage more people to donate to your cause. Finding the right fundraising platform to create a digital marketing campaign is key. Look for powerful features like email marketing, social media management, and donor management. 

How FrontStream Facilitates Online Fundraising for Nonprofits

There are a number of ways that FrontStream can help nonprofits with their online fundraising efforts. First, we provide a comprehensive suite of tools to streamline the entire process. This includes everything from donation pages to email templates and more. Plus, our team is always available to offer support and advice. In addition, we work with some of the most popular online payment processors, so you can be sure your donations are processed quickly and securely. Contact us today for a free demo.


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