Many people wouldn’t go to a restaurant without checking out its reputation online. Did you know you can also do the same with your charitable causes? With over 1.5 million nonprofits in the United States alone, there is a lot of information to wade through when considering the right recipients for your charitable giving. But a new partnership between Truist and GreatNonprofits will soon help make information more accessible for donors.

GreatNonprofits is the largest online social review site for charities. A nonprofit organization itself, GreatNonprofits contains over 200,000 user-generated reviews of more than 17,000 nonprofit organizations. These reviews and ratings are posted by people who have been touched by a nonprofit and want to share their story about it. Think of it as a Yelp or Trip Advisor for charities. GreatNonprofits is crowdsourced, so it includes reviews of groups of all different shapes and sizes. That means some fantastic charities, regardless of the size of their marketing budget, are getting recognized for their work by the people they have served.

GreatNonprofit is a natural fit for Truist’s corporate philanthropy platform. The social review data will be integrated so that Truist users have easy access to more information when making decisions about charitable giving. They’ll also be able to add their own reviews to the database. The partnership will result in a more robust employee giving solution incorporating real-time reviews and feedback.

That feedback is proving to be valuable to nonprofits because it helps them reach new supporters and highlight their accomplishments. For example, Oral Cancer Foundation in Newport Beach, California sent an email to major donors highlighting some of its reviews on GreatNonprofits. As a result, two new donors each gave $50,000 to the organization and another donor awarded $300,000 in unrestricted funding. With a typical annual budget of just $200,000, this organization’s opportunities exploded with these donations.

The open-access forum GreatNonprofits provides for charities is in line with the shift to transparency so many organizations are making these days. Transparency is about putting information out there and no longer hiding behind secrecy around the operations of an organization, especially its financials. With so many choices available for donors, especially around this time of year, the GreatNonprofits’ technology is welcome for people doing research on the best charity to receive their hard-earned money.

The reviews provide charities with valuable material they can use for marketing their services. Operation Understanding in Washington, D.C. attracted 188 reviews last year and is incorporating quotes from those reviews in its new brochure and other marketing material. The organization is also attributing additional fundraising to the reviews, despite the difficult economic climate.

With all of these benefits, there’s no question that having access to more information not only benefits donors as well as the charitable organizations. Look for a complete implementation of GreatNonprofits’ data in Truist’s software suite within the next year.

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