Over the past 12 months, the non-profit sector has faced its biggest ever challenge. With fundraising events forcibly cancelled across the globe because of Covid-19, charities have had to make an at times uncomfortable shift to the online space. The recently published Charity Digital Skills Report cites that 66% of charities in the UK began delivering all work remotely, whilst 61% have been offering more online services to their database and supporters.
The new report by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF) also highlights that whilst overall giving in the UK increased by £800m in 2020 compared to the previous year, the increase has not been felt by many smaller charities. Smaller organisations that normally rely on fundraising activities such as Christmas fairs, challenge events and quiz nights have suffered as for the most part these events have not been able to take place. The result is that already tight budgets have been stretched even further.
The Covid-19 pandemic has presented the nonprofit sector with a dual problem of increased budgetary stress whilst having to rapidly shift online with little to no experience.
As a technology company we thought it wise to dig a little deeper and share some helpful tips to the most common digital fundraising problems, creating a series of articles that will hopefully be of benefit. This blog is the introduction to that series!
In response to the restrictions placed upon groups of people meeting, charities have started to move their services online. The forced change that covid has inflicted upon these charities has been aggravated by the fact that digital leadership across the sector is lacking. 83% of UK non-profits feel that they are poor at digital service delivery. Moreover, the report notes that 51% of UK charities do not currently have a digital strategy in place.
Without the skills and strategy from leadership, charities believe they won’t be able to help supporters as much as they could, thereby missing out on opportunities to fundraise. Without the information, time or resources to adapt quickly enough, 27% of charities have cancelled services. Both the urgency of this challenge and the gaps it will leave in the lives of non-profit service users cannot be underestimated.
A shift from the physical to online space has been in progress since before 2020, but the pandemic has certainly accelerated the process. Of course in person events will return, but as younger, digitally adept audiences are continually added to donor bases, it’s crucial that charities adopt and prioritise digital fundraising strategies.
Here at Givergy we have seen 46% of charities want guidance on how to digitise their services and we hope to help alleviate the pressures caused by the digital skills gap by offering free educational material.
Our blogs and online webinars contain many top tips on how to navigate the digital world and run online fundraising campaigns, with a focus on mobile bidding and giving. We have recently explored real life case studies that outline how it is possible to benefit from annual subscriptions when driving a fundraising strategy, and how you can react to impromptu digital fundraising challenges.
Offering creative solutions to digital fundraising challenges will hopefully ease some of the pressure that has been building on the sector for a long time whilst also preparing it for the future.
Over the following weeks we will be revisiting the Charity Digital Skills report and adding more informative content to this blog series, seeking to advise on some of the most common issues charities have been facing when confronting the digital fundraising world. Watch this space!
Rory has been working in the digital and charity fundraising world for the last six years as part of the Givergy business development team. During that time he has helped hundreds of charities raise more at their fundraising events with a more recent focus on virtual and online fundraising.
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