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How to motivate one-off givers to become recurring donors

Toni Gregory
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Last editedNov 20232 min read

Over the past 12-18 months we’ve heard from businesses consolidating their suppliers to reduce costs and read reports of consumers cutting back on what they consider to be non-essential spending. But how are charities and their donors adapting to what can only be described as a turbulent economy? A year on from our last survey, we conducted a new survey of 4,035 adults based in the UK to better understand how the current economic climate is impacting donation habits.

What did we find out? Well, the good news is that people are still committed to charitable giving. The even better news is they shared exactly what would make them give more regularly. 

64% of people have made a donation in the past few months

Nearly two-thirds of people have given to charity over the past few months, with 46% telling us they do so on a regular basis. This tells us that, despite interest rates reaching a 15-year high, the percentage of people giving to charity has remained fairly stable with only minor changes (only a few percent down from 49%) since our last survey in November 2022.

What stood out to us was that for a small portion of people (8%), the cost of living crisis had made them want to increase the amount they were donating. The reasons being that they recognised more people are in need or those who were already in need would require additional support. 

What would motivate people to donate more?

So, how can your charity convert more one-off donors into regular givers? And of those already giving, what would motivate them to give more frequently? 

The payment experience is key. Over half of the people (51%) surveyed told us they’d be more likely to make additional donations to a charity if they’d found the process fast and simple when giving the first time. When we looked deeper into the responses to understand exactly what makes a giving experience positive, we found that over a third of people (39%) said that being able to set up a recurring donation would be the easiest way for them to give. In fact, over one in 10 also said that they would even give more frequently if a charity offered automated donations. 

32% of respondents shared that they already have an automated donation set-up. Whilst this is great to hear, it means that there’s huge potential to increase the number of regular givers and that offering an automated way to give could be the key to unlocking this. We asked our long-term customer, JustGiving, to share their thoughts on the survey results. Oliver Shaw-Latimer, Senior Director of Payments and Innovation at JustGiving, said: “As a result of the cost-of-living crisis, we’ve seen a change in the way in which people donate to charities and good causes, with more people choosing to give little and often.”

How GoCardless can help your charity collect recurring donations

Framework, a UK charity that provides housing and support services for vulnerable adults, has openly shared in the past that GoCardless helped them to simplify their donor experience. After moving to us, they were able to make the checkout three steps rather than five, something that they believe contributed to their conversion rates almost tripling. 

If your charity would like to find out more about GoCardless recurring payments or our 25% charity discount, then click here and start driving more donations today.

Over 85,000 businesses use GoCardless to get paid on time. Learn more about how you can improve payment processing at your business today.

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Interested in automating the way you get paid? GoCardless can help
Interested in automating the way you get paid? GoCardless can help

Interested in automating the way you get paid? GoCardless can help

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