December is the busiest time of the year for restaurants and stores, but it’s also the busiest time for nonprofit organizations. Even though everyone is spending on gifts, they are leaving some aside to donate, whether because they are moved by the season to give or they are trying to get a tax write off for the end of the year. Regardless of the reason, December donations are essential to staying afloat through the year, and to make the most of the revenue, we’re sharing 4 tips to manage holiday donations.
Look at Trends in Holiday Giving
Because the revenue you get in December will help carry you through the next 12 months, it’s important to get an approximate amount in mind that you will receive. Take some time to look through the revenue you brought in over the past five Decembers and analyze the information. Determine if each year, your nonprofit organization received around the same amount in donations. Look to see if there was one year that was significantly higher or lower in donations compared with other years and what may have caused the spike or drop. Does this year look to have the same factors and can you expect the average amount.
Compare Your Year-to-Date Donations to Years Past
In addition to looking at how much revenue you would bring in during December to help you know what to expect, it’s also important to look at how this year overall is trending compared to years past. Are you trending at the same pace or higher or lower. This may point to how much you can expect in donations this holiday season.
It’s important to note that as we are writing this, COVID-19 is impacting the economy and also how much people are donating. If you’re seeing a year-to-date downward trend, that may be the cause of it.
During this analysis of both past December giving and year-to-date revenue trends, this may be a good time to add an additional fundraiser drive, email campaign, or social media posting if you find you are trending behind.
Provide Easy Opportunities for Donations
Make sure your donors can easily donate this holiday season. Donors under 40 are more likely to make quick decisions related to donating, often seeing a captivating advertisement or reading a compelling story and clicking the “Donate” button. Consider adding avenues for simple donations if you haven’t already, such as a PayPal option, donate buttons on your social media posts, and one-click donations on email campaigns. The fewer steps a potential donor has to take, the more likely it is they will convert.
Make the Most of Your Accounting Software to Manage Holiday Donations
Your accounting software should make it easy for you to know exactly how much in donations you’re collecting at any given time as well as how it compares to years past. You can also manage any non-cash donations of goods and services, recording them as in-kind donations. While you may find think that only money can be recorded in your accounting records, anything of value should be included and logged.
Additionally, if you are running a specific donation campaign toward a set goal, fund accounting software will help you keep track of exactly how much has gone into the fund separate from your general ledger, preventing errors that have both financial and legal ramifications.
Schedule a Consultation with Our Nonprofit Accounting Software Consultants
If you are struggling with managing your holiday donations, fund accounting, or want to connect other software into your accounting, we can help. With our nonprofit accounting software solutions, we streamline your record keeping and help you make the most out of your programs. To learn more about our solutions, reach out to us today at 888-249-6008 or fill out the form below.
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