Getting Started With Online Donation Stations for Non-Profit Charitable Organizations

Modern payment technologies have transformed various industries for the better. They help streamline and automate payments to make funds more accessible for all participants in the transfer process. Charitable organizations also use the latest payment technologies to accept donations. Studies by the National Philanthropic Trust (NPT) show that Americans gave $484.85 billion in 2021. These organizations heavily rely on safe and efficient payment technologies to collect funds for humanitarian causes. This blog discusses how non-profits and charitable organizations get started with modern payment systems.  

 

Setting Up a Merchant Account

Ideally, non-profit organizations should set up a business/merchant account to accept donations. Accepting donations in personal bank accounts may cause trouble and complications for tax filing processes. According to the Giving USA 2021 Annual Report, 1.54 million charitable organizations are registered with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Most of these organizations have dedicated merchant accounts to accept donations from the community. Non-profit organizations that choose hi-tech banks with the latest payment technologies often have an added advantage. These banks help organizations accept donations with online payment methods/technologies.

 

Exploring the Payment Technologies 

Advanced payment gateway providers help non-profit organizations increase their reach by accepting donations online. Organizations that do not leverage these technologies leave valuable revenue from the next generation of patrons that is not accustomed to paying via pledge forms, invoices, and checks. The tech-savvy gateway providers set up an online donation platform with the following technologies. 

  • QR Codes: Non-profits often use the QR code payment technology to accept payments via mobile wallets and phones. Donors scan the dynamic QR codes on a screen or paper with their smartphones to log in and donate.
  • SMS Payments: Donation stations powered by automated SMS payments help organizations stay in touch with their donors regularly. They send payment reminders and links to potential donors to encourage donating on the move. 
  • Recurring Payments: Recurring donation practices help non-profits maintain an active flow of residual funds for humanitarian causes. Gateways that support regular payments allow organizations to automatically accept payments from their most active donors weekly, monthly, or annually on a fixed recurring schedule.
  • IVR Payments: Donation platforms that accept IVR payments automate payment collections on the phone. This technology eliminates the need for a full-time resource or a third-party contact center for accepting payments. Several organizations use IVR payments as their primary fundraising tool. 
  • All-In-One Hosted Payment Portals: Tech-savvy payment processing organizations set up a full-fledged donation platform that helps non-profits with fundraising efforts, donor management, and fund accounting on a single interface. The top all-in-one hosted payment portals integrate seamlessly with the non-profit’s website to accept donations via ACH and credit cards online. 

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Selecting the Best Payment Gateway Partner for Online Donations

The market is saturated with several online payment gateway providers offering similar functionalities. So, how do you choose the right one? Consider the following factors while selecting a provider for your donation collection needs.

PCI-Compliance

Reliable payment technology providers reduce PCI scope for non-profits by implementing PCI and Nacha-compliant payment solutions. Safe payment solutions help these organizations accept payments from donors across the globe while maintaining the confidentiality of sensitive information. PCI-compliant payment processors use modules that do not save donors’ banking information on the network, reducing the risk of identity theft and exposure.

Scalability

Scalable payment processing technologies grow seamlessly with the growing needs of a charitable organization. The top payment gateway providers offer a whole suite of complementary payment technologies that work together to help these organizations accept donations and raise money during fundraising events. 

Automation

Automated technologies such as email invoicing and SMS payments help charitable organizations run a lean operation and serve several donors without growing their team size.

Comprehensive Support

A near-perfect uptime is essential while collecting funds during fundraising events. Payment processors that offer comprehensive support ensure that the organization does not miss out on valuable donations from their donors due to system errors. 

Customizability

Charitable organizations must eliminate friction while attracting donors that wish to donate online. Customizable donation platforms help them mimic their website to increase the confidence of the donors. Seamless iFrame and hosted payment solutions have the potential to double the donation received by charitable organizations. The best payment processors offer and maintain these platforms and other automated mobile payment systems for a small monthly platform fee.

 

Additional Tips for Non-Profit Organizations

Leverage Cash Discount

Donation platforms that support payments via ACH minimize the payment processing costs for the donors. The charitable organizations that adopt ACH technology-enabled donation stations can offer cash discounts to their donors while accepting payments. Studies conducted by Nacha show that monthly gifts from congregants using electronic bank transfers are, on average, 55% higher than with other payment types.

Manage Donations via Virtual Terminals

Online virtual terminals help non-profits create and track a digital trail of all online payments. They easily segregate and manage various fundraising campaigns on the go. Effective management allows organizations to track and fulfill revenue goals to support their mission. Our intelligent virtual terminal solutions break down financial gift data by campaign drive, event, or fund. They also help the organization track its goals to see how far it needs to go to fulfill them. Organizations can use the data generated from the virtual terminals to provoke urgency within their donor circle and eventually meet their revenue goals.

Generate Email Acknowledgement Receipts

The virtual terminals connect with back-office accounting software and email invoicing tools to generate and distribute donation acknowledgment receipts automatically.

 

iCheckGateway.com helps charitable non-profit organizations accept payments via ACH and credit cards on a single platform. We support easy management and rectification of gifts for organizations to increase their reach while staying relevant with modern tech. Our one-stop solutions support and manage multiple fundraising campaigns on a single secure platform. These solutions also help them develop a “Donor Circle” with recurring payments for the most active donors. Become a partner to help your charitable organizations leverage the benefits of hi-tech low-cost payment processing with us today.

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