A nonprofit donation request form template can help you streamline your fundraising efforts. This article will give you the information you need to make your donation request form effective.
Who is this template for?
This template is for all nonprofit organizations.
What are the main sections covered in this template?
Nonprofit donation request form you can edit. Adjust the branding of the template using your nonprofit's font and colors.
Donations are what keep nonprofit doors open, allowing organizations to fight the good fight and make a difference in their communities. However, you can’t always solicit donors individually, which is why donation request forms are so important.
Whether you’re trying to get unsolicited donations from your website or sending the form to prospective donors for ease of access, a nonprofit donation request form template can help you streamline your fundraising efforts. In this article, we will share everything you need to know about donation request forms—what they are, why they’re important, the different types, and how to use templates to make yours the most effective.
What Is a Donation Request Form?
A donation request form is just that—a form that donors fill out to give money to your organization.
A donation request form can be a physical letter or an online landing page, and it can be as simple or complex as you’d like. However, keep in mind that the more difficult the form is to fill out, the more likely you’ll have people abandon the form—and perhaps the donation—altogether.
Your nonprofit donation form should include several key elements, though you can always add more and customize them to meet your needs. The basics you should include on every giving form are:
The name helps you know who to thank, while the address, email, and phone number help you capture critical contact information that will allow you to foster the relationship down the line. Lastly, the donation amount is how much they want to give. You can leave it open-ended or give options on how much to give. You can even ask if they’d like to make it a one-time gift or a recurring one.
Donations are a core part of your nonprofit business plan, and donation request forms can make it so much easier to reach your fundraising goals.
Even though a donation request form should be simple, you have a lot of options on how you can put it together, so make sure to brand it to your nonprofit. A great donation form will make converting your visitors to donors as easy as the click of a button, and it’s a great way to increase your monthly donors with minimal effort.
Why Donation Request Forms Are Important
Nonprofit donation request forms are so important to your fundraising strategy. Here are a few reasons why donation request form templates are critical to your organization’s success.
Donation Request Forms Make It Easier to Give
The easier you can make it to give, the better. And nothing is easier than a simple, single-page online form that you enter a few key details in and submit. If your donor has their credit card information saved or memorized, they won’t even need to get up and get their wallet.
Think about online shopping. Sometimes, you just want to order something quickly but are forced to navigate several different pages to enter your information. It’s cumbersome and slow to load. When it is finally completed, it takes forever to process. If the experience is bad enough, you may not shop with that retailer again—or you might even choose to abandon the process before completing the order.
The same is true when it comes to donating to a nonprofit. If your process is too complex, you’ll lose donors. If it’s easy, you’ll hook them with your streamlined ask and make it more likely that they’ll come back and give again.
Nonprofit donation request form templates are extremely helpful and make it easy to simply send the form directly to donors or upload them to your website.
Donation Request Forms Can be Customized
A donation request form can be customized to meet your specific needs, which is great when you have various campaigns throughout the year.
In addition to your open-ended form that is evergreen, you can also create donation request forms for your specific campaigns. Perhaps your organization is doing cold calls during a new campaign. Once you get that verbal commitment, you can send them the specific form.
Donation request forms can also be a fantastic way to track how effective your campaigns are, as you’ll have a unique way to track how well they are performing. You can even customize the form based on the type of giving, further targeting the messaging to be most effective.
For example, recurring gifts can have a short impact statement about the impact of these gifts, while one-time gifts can have a message targeted to the overall campaign. Donation request form templates make it easy for you to create and launch new forms with little effort.
Donation Request Forms Capture Critical Donor Information
Even the most simple donor request forms can help you capture critical donor information. Things like name, address, email, and even phone can help kickstart the donor cultivation process down the line.
Once you have their contact data, you can do some research to understand what their giving capacity is. Was this a one-time gift in honor of a person? Perhaps there’s a viral challenge going around, so while it’s great that you’re getting funds, you won’t be able to replicate it year after year. It’s still great to capture these individuals for your records.
You may also discover donors with a huge affinity to your nonprofit organization or cause. If this is the case, you now have their preferred contact information and can start reaching out. A donation request form is a win-win all around.
Different Types of Donations Require Different Donation Request Forms
As you decide what type of nonprofit donation request form template you want to use, start by considering its primary purpose.
There are different forms for different types of donations, so let’s go over some of the most common nonprofit donation form templates. While there’s no one-size-fits-all form for all your needs, these are a great start.
Basic Nonprofit Donation Form Template
The standard nonprofit donation form template captures the basic information that you need to get that donation. This includes:
You may even want to include a short call to action on the page to help educate and inspire people to give, as well as a quick FAQ should anyone have any questions on the giving process on your donation template form.
The National Alliance on Mental Health does a great job with its online donation form template. They lead with the inspirational blurb—the reason why you should be compelled to give—before transitioning directly into the amount you’d like to donate. They close with the details: contact information and credit card information.
In-kind Donation Form
Sometimes donors want to donate to your organization, but they don’t want to donate money. These are called in-kind donations.
Perhaps you have a raffle, and they want to donate tickets to a sporting event or a nice purse. Maybe they want to gift your organization something of value that’s critical to your mission, like a used vehicle.
There are many things that a donor can donate to your organization, and while they may not be money, they still hold incredible value. You’ll want to capture the in-kind donation as best as you can by creating an in-kind donation form template.
On your in-kind donation form, you’ll want to ask for the following information, though it may vary based on your organization.
Contact information (mailing address, email address, phone number)
Comments (intended use, any other information they’d like to share about the item).
The in-kind donation form could be a paper form that donors could fill in, like the one below from the Center on Halsted. It could also be replicated as an online form with the same information, though keep in mind it is best practice for them to send some sort of identifying information with their donation. Donors will still need to send the item in, so it’s best to have a paper form regardless.
Sponsorship Nonprofit Donation Request Form Template
Perhaps you’re throwing an event and looking to get sponsors to help drive down the cost. Maybe you want to ask your donors to sponsor an element of your operations or a beneficiary of your nonprofit, like a child or animal.
Whatever the reason, a nonprofit donation request form can help you capture this information.
The donation template form itself should be simple, like the one from Jotform below. Again, you just need to capture the pertinent details like the donor’s name, email, and phone. However, you want to add two important pieces of information: company and sponsorship level.
Often, your sponsors will be with a company, so you need to leave space to accurately capture how that information should be represented.
You’ll likely have different sponsorship levels available, so instead of listing the amounts you’d like them to donate, you should list the sponsorship levels instead. You can always leave a space if they’d like to make an incremental donation.
Some forms opt to include brief information about the sponsorship levels and opportunities directly in the form, so it’s easier for donors to see what they’re signing up for. This is a great idea, but make sure you don’t overwhelm donors with forms that are too complex.
Membership Donation Request Form
Many donors like to feel as if they’re part of an exclusive club, which is why a membership donation request form should highlight all the perks of joining.
Typically, nonprofit memberships require a one-time annual donation or a recurring donation that equals the same amount, especially to cover the cost of any gifts that you plan to offer.
As you build your form, make sure to include the option to opt-in to this exclusive gift or opt-out, as some will prefer their full donation to go to the organization’s good work.
The National Wildlife Federation does a great job of this. Their form is clean and branded, sharing all the pertinent details of the membership. They even include a picture so you can see what you get for joining.
Membership donation forms are a great way to get recurring gifts, and you can customize them to meet your organization’s needs, including offering more exclusive gifts the higher the membership tier.
5 Tips on How to Make Your Donation Request Forms Effective and Efficient
Now that you know some of the most common types of nonprofit donation form templates, it’s important that you set them up right to maximize their impact. After all, your donation form template is no good unless people use it to give!
1. Keep It Simple
It can be tempting to want to put a lot of information in your donation request form but resist the urge. You want to keep it as simple and straightforward as possible.
The donation form is really the point of sale. You want to do whatever you can to make them complete the transaction and give. If you have too many input fields, it’s more likely that they will give up before making the final donation. Instead, stick with the basics, like name, billing information, credit card, and donation amount.
2. Include a Short Impact Statement
Just because you’re keeping it simple doesn’t mean you can’t touch on your mission in your donation template form. Use your limited real estate on the donation page to inspire your donors to dig deep. Remind them why they are giving to your organization and what you can accomplish with their support.
Keep this short statement around 50 words. That’s enough to make your donors think about how much they want to give. It’s also short enough that their eyes won’t naturally gloss over it.
Consider if you could tell them just one thing, what would it be? Then, let the nonprofit donation request form work its magic.
3. Utilize Branding to Make it Pop
Don’t forget to brand your nonprofit donation request form template. Use your brand colors, fonts, and any other identifying information. You want the form to look cohesive with the rest of your website rather than standing out.
Use an inspirational or educational picture as your header. Show an image of the membership benefits. Get creative with how you let your brand shine without bogging the form down. Limit yourself to one image. Remember, this is to capture the donation. The rest of your website is there to entice them to make the gift.
4. Leave Room for Comments
When you leave room for comments on your nonprofit donation request form template, you never know what you’re going to get! Most of the time, it will be left blank, while other times, you’ll get to learn more about why that donor is giving.
These nuggets can help you connect with the donor in the future, and they also help you see the impact your nonprofit is having on the world around you. You’ll find inspiration when you leave room for people to share more information with you.
5. End With a Thank You
The final, most important step to take with your nonprofit donation request form template is to end with a thank you.
Once they hit the submit button, take them to a confirmation page. This will indicate the transaction went through, but it also gives you one last opportunity to thank them.
Share images of the people or communities that their money impacts. You have a unique opportunity to connect one last time with your donor on this page, so make that final impression count.
Wrapping Up: Nonprofit Donation Request Form Templates
A nonprofit donation request form template can be a complete game changer for your organization, helping you create customized, easy-to-use forms to solicit your donors on multiple platforms. These pre-made templates make sure you’re capturing critical information that will help you track the gift and cultivate your donors down the line.
Your giving process should be simple, and these forms help ensure you’re not overcomplicating the matter and losing donors along the way. Check out the templates above and start streamlining your giving process today!
With the right tools, nonprofits can quickly scale fundraising and programming and take back their time. But, what makes something the “best” tool? And how do you justify an additional expense in a resource-constrained organization? Download this guide to learn more.