We are at the turning point for Online Giving. What used to be a myth and a far-fetched idea is now becoming more and more a part of our everyday life. Today, 62% of donors prefer to give online as opposed to traditional tithing methods. Maybe you’ve thought about it already. There are a number of benefits to both online giving and traditional forms of giving, but we encourage you to evaluate if this is right for your church. If you don’t fully understand the benefits of online giving, you may be missing out on this opportunity.
For the majority of people, change is not easy. When you involve money, there is this added level of security that people have. If you are having difficulty presenting an online giving platform or solution to your church, consider these 9 simple steps that will get you started with online giving.
Online Giving In 9 Simple Steps
1. Get Your Leadership Team On Board
Change starts with your core group of people. This step needs to happen before moving forward to any other step. If you don’t have support from your leadership team, then the chances of implementing an online giving platform will be slim to none. Let this serve as a trial run to see if an online giving platform fits the needs of your church. Once you have your leadership team on board and they support the change, any issue that may come up in the future will be resolved more easily than it would be if you had strong opposition before installing the platform. Take the time to get to a point where your leadership team is unified.
2. Identify The Problems With The Current System
This next step is super important as well because most people may not realize that there is a problem to solve in the first place. If there isn’t a problem, then there is no need for change. Your members will less interested when presented with a solution to a problem that they don’t know they have. Keep in mind that there may not be a glaring problem with the way you currently operate your contributions, but that is where you need to identify why you want to have an online giving platform in the first place. Maybe you are having problems with accounting or keeping track of the weekly contribution is messy and unorganized, online giving can solve problems like this.
3. Introduce Online And Mobile Giving As The Solution
Once the problems are clearly identified with the current system, present your solution: “Online and mobile giving will help to resolve these issues…”
4. Emphasize The Benefits
Be sure to communicate the benefits of online and mobile giving clearly and use examples that display the features of the platform. Describe why everyone will not only love the new features and changes, but how they will benefit from it.
Online Giving is the solution, because:
- It allows us to process gifts instantaneously.
- Tracking our weekly contributions are automated and easily accessible.
- Givers have the ability to submit a gift anytime and from anywhere in the world.
- Transactions are processed in a secure fashion without having physical cash or checks in the hands of staff members or volunteers.
- There is the ability for givers to set up recurring contributions so they never miss or forget to tithe or donate.
5. Emphasize The Security
When discussing changes that involve people’s money, the number one concern is security. Research the security of the fund transfers for the platform you decide to go with. Do your due diligence here so givers feel safe when they contribute in a digital format as opposed to physically putting a check or cash in the offering plate. It might help to know the company that is handling the transactions, who else they provide services to, and find some reviews about them online so you can say with confidence that contribution money and member information will be safe when they give online. You can never be too thorough with this step so take your time here. Allow everyone to ask questions and relieve any concerns as best as you can. Then pray.
6. Create A Plan Of Action For Implementation
Once everyone understands what changes are about to take place, set a date and create a plan of action to implement these changes.
- What do you need to do to get set up with an online giving platform?
- How long will it take?
- Where will the form live on the web?
- What does the reporting look like?
- Where do the funds go? Do you need approval from your bank?
Answering these questions, along with some styling questions about how the form looks, will give you and your team a good jumping off point to dive into the implementation of your online giving platform.
7. Highlight Similar Congregations And Their Success With Online/Mobile Giving
See if you can find testimonies from other churches that started and have had success with their online giving platform. Keep reminding the church that this is a good change and that other people have successfully made the leap without any regrets.
8. Make Sure The Donation Form Is Easy To Use And Easy To Find
Since most people shy away from change, you will need to take this into consideration. Wherever you’ve decided to put the donation form, test it to see what it will look like and how the back-end will work. Make sure that the form is easy to find on your website, easy to use, simple is always better. Studies have shown that the longer someone spends on a task online, the less likely they are to complete it. If your giving form has 3 pages or more, you will lose the majority of your donors because of the length of time it takes to complete your donation form.
9. Talk About It Consistently
Change takes time. Remind people consistently of your online giving and mobile giving applications. Eventually, they will make it a habit to give online as opposed to the giving plate on Sunday. Using online giving resources during your church service to promote and remind your congregation is a great start. Post about it on your social media platforms, list it in your weekly bulletins, bring it up during announcements, all of these are great ways to spread the word about online giving. Looking for more ideas? Check out our free webinar on 10 Ways To Get Your Church To Use Online Giving below.
Get started with online giving by signing up with Sharefaith Giving! Free to all Sharefaith members with no setup fees or monthly fees and a low 3% transaction fee, Sharefaith Giving has everything you need to successfully use online giving. With intuitive contact forms, donor account registration, the ability to create and donate to multiple funds, event registration forms and more, you’ll love how easy it is to set up and use. Need help? Sharefaith Giving is backed by our live phone, chat and email support 6 days a week! To learn more about Sharefaith Giving, click here or give us a call today at 888-317-4018.