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Benefits of Online Giving

By Empowering Stewardship Web Team | Stewardship & Giving

Q: Why should our church offer an online giving option?
A: There are several advantages to offering an online giving option to churchgoers:

Wide acceptance – Many people have switched to paying bills online for almost all other activities. An option to give online is finding increasing acceptance by members at churches whenever they introduce it. Most of the churches that offer this option find at least 10% of the families sign up for it within the first year. The success of the program depends, to a large extent, on how it is launched and promoted.

Stability in collections – Most online giving programs offer a recurring giving feature that allows online donors to schedule their church donations weekly, biweekly or monthly. When all the options to give are available and donors are free to set their own dates or days to give, 40% of them choose monthly option while 30% prefer to give weekly or biweekly. Now the church has a steady inflow of funds that it can count on throughout the year. Many churches have reported a significant increase in collections, especially during summer when many families go out of town or are simply too busy with other activities.

Increase in collections – The online option to charge donations to the credit card greatly enhances attractiveness of the online giving program. A church that offers both bank transfer and credit cards for giving generally sees between 40 and 45% of the donations charged to credit cards. Additionally, an average credit card donation is generally 8 to 10% higher than that of a cash or check donation. This difference more than offsets the cost to the church of accepting credit card donations.

Convenience – This is probably the biggest advantage for the family. They can schedule their donations at any time during the week from the convenience and safety of their homes. They do not have to be concerned about missing out on their commitment to the church if they cannot attend the services for any reason

Attracting younger generation – The younger generation is more likely to participate in a church’s activities and donate when it can do so using the means and technology that they use in their daily lives. The appeal for donation for earthquake victims in Haiti is a prime example of how modern technology helped in collecting $30 million dollars in a matter of ten days by allowing people who used their cell phones a means to make a donation.

This article originally appeared in the Southern Missouri District Messenger, Fall 2017. Used with permission.


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