The State of Nonprofit Donor Retention (And What To Do About It)


Unfortunately, across the nonprofit sector, donor retention rates are low and getting worse. According to the 2 018 Fundraising Effectiveness Survey Report , the average donor retention rate was 45.5% The chart below illustrates the fluctuations in average donor retention over time: Nonprofits continue to lose donors at an alarming rate, catching them in a losing cycle of constantly spending time and money on costly donor acquisition, only to lose most of that investment.

How to Boost Online Donor Retention

NonProfit Hub

Your nonprofit’s donor retention rate is the percentage of donors who give from year to year, or over any other specific time period. With concrete retention strategies, you can make the most of increases in new donors. Start tracking your retention rates.


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6 Tactics for Increasing Donor Retention

Connection Cafe

donor retention rate in 2017. This unimpressive donor retention rate—one that hasn’t snuck north of 50% in more than a decade—hounds most nonprofits. A weak donor retention rate is an alarm bell, suggesting that your mission isn’t finding enough passionate supporters. And the lower the retention rate, the more work fundraisers must do to keep the bottom line above water. Do You Know Your Donor Retention Rate? but what’s your organization’s donor retention rate?

7 Ways Nonprofits Can Automate Donor Retention

Nonprofit Tech for Good

Donor retention is a crucial aspect of a productive fundraising strategy. While a good deal of time and resources will be dedicated to this effort, certain aspects of donor retention can be made easy. 7) Improve Donor Retention by Thanking Donors Faster.

First-Time Donor Retention: 3 Nonprofit Best Practices

NonProfit Hub

Start boosting your donor retention rate by focusing on those who are just giving to your nonprofit for the first time. Why First-Time Donor Retention is Important. New donor retention plays a major role in your overall retention rate. The drastically lower new donor retention rate means that focusing your efforts here offers the greatest potential for fundraising success. Donor Retention Featured

9 Underutilized Emails that Improve Donor Retention

Connection Cafe

The 2014 Nonprofit Communications Trends Report was released last week and one of the more interesting findings was that donor retention remainsa lower priority. As my colleague Frank Barry mentioned, most nonprofits stink at donor retention. Over the past 10 years, donor retention has fallen from 33% to 27%. But…donor retention isn’t one of the top three communications goals for 2014 , according to the report. Want more donor retention advice?

Stewarding #GivingTuesday: Increase Your Retention Rate

Connection Cafe

Assuring you have a successful retention rate starts with these four steps: Inform: Your community needs to know about your involvement. Next you will need a stewardship plan to secure retention rates. The week of and after #GivingTuesday is critical to your donor retention rate. #GivingTuesday is the largest global day of giving and it’s fast approaching. According to, over $300 million was raised online in 2017, totaling 2.5 million gifts.

7 Proven Ways to Increase Member Retention Right Now

Wild Apricot

Here are 7 proven ways to increase Member Retention. By the end, you'll have the blueprints to create a solid strategy to start increasing member retention at your organization right away Expert Advice, Real life examples, research, and more.

How Nonprofits Can Use Storytelling to Boost Donor Retention

Connection Cafe

Blackbaud’s 2016 Charitable Giving Report shows us that donor retention for first time donors is still remarkably low – 29% for offline donors and 21% for online donors. But if donors are retained passed that first year, the retention rate jumps significantly to 60% for offline donors and 58% for online donors. This data shows that new donor retention should be a high priority for non-profit organizations.

One Thing Most Nonprofits Stink at (Donor Retention) and How You Can Change It in 2019

Connection Cafe

Blackbaud’s latest Charitable Giving Report sheds light on the importance of donor retention in the nonprofit industry. According to the latest research from Blackbaud’s Charitable Giving Report : The average donor retention rates for first-year offline-only donors is 29%. The average donor retention rates for first-year online-only donors is 22%. If the donor retention trend continues, we’ll eventually end up with donor retention rates under 20%.

3 Keys to Lasting Participant Retention in P2P Fundraising 

Connection Cafe

But from the looks of the data and the declining retention rates for walks and 5Ks, we all need a refresher on what matters when it comes to people coming back year after year. This year’s Blackbaud Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Study shows retention rates declining for Walks and 5Ks. Let’s look at the top three ways to invest in retention. Focus on staff retention.

9 Proven Ways to Increase Member Retention Right Now

Wild Apricot

Here are 9 proven ways to increase member retention — featuring expert advice, real life examples, research, and more. By the end, you'll have the blueprint to create a solid strategy to start increasing member retention at your organization right away

Ethical Acts that Increase Donor Retention

Connection Cafe

Consider these tips to increase donor retention: Annual Information: Sharing your annual report—via your website, for example—demonstrates commitment to your mission, increasing donor trust. Transparency is incredibly important to build trust and sustain donor retention. For many fundraising professionals, the “ people give to people, not organizations ” concept is the foundation of their careers.

6 Effective Donor Retention Strategies for Small Nonprofits

NonProfit Hub

This means that your nonprofit must first master the art of effective donor retention. . There are several reasons donor retention is so important for nonprofits: First, it’s much less expensive to ask a donor to give again than to perform enough outreach to acquire a new donor. . As you can see, donor retention is a key part of any nonprofit’s organization strategy. Donor retention is key to helping your nonprofit grow. Donor Retention Featured

5 Ways to Use Donor Data to Increase Retention

NonProfit Hub

The post 5 Ways to Use Donor Data to Increase Retention appeared first on Nonprofit Hub. Donor Retention FeaturedThere’s no easy answer when it comes to the age-old question of how to improve nonprofit fundraising outcomes. Making strategic decisions for your cause takes time, effort and experience. However, having the right donor data on hand can really improve your nonprofit’s fundraising approach.

Donor Retention Made Simple

NonProfit Hub

Are you overwhelmed by all of this retention talk? But these small steps can help you build up donor retention over time. The post Donor Retention Made Simple appeared first on Nonprofit Hub. This article originally ran in our Nonprofit Hub Magazine, a free bi-monthly magazine dedicated to providing focused content on a particular topic. In our January/February edition, we explored how to keep donors around all year.

Discussion of Donor Data Retention

Robert Weiner

The original question: My organization is working on a data retention policy and wondering if others have insights to share. The only potential issue here is then you need to consider an additional record as part of the retention schedule, though if this were also 7 years, you would conceivably be able to access records of people who had been inactive for up to 14 years. A few months ago I wrote a post on the topic of whether nonprofits should delete old donor records.

4 Ways to Stand Out and Boost Donor Retention

Connection Cafe

And yet, there is one last statistic that makes fundraisers stay awake at night—the sorry state of donor retention overall , and especially retention of first-time donors. Nonprofit Fundraising donor communications donor cultivation donor retention engagement thanksAccording to Foundation Center , there are just 12 items on the checklist for beginning a nonprofit organization.

Donor Retention: The Easiest Money You’ll Ever Raise

Connection Cafe

Nonprofit Fundraising donor love donor retention fundraising ideas fundraising tips npEXPERTS Philanthropy by the NumbersThere’s a crisis brewing in the fundraising world. And it’s all about our donors , the ones who are deserting us. Donors can be fickle, and they’re fleeing our organizations in vast numbers these days. Overall, the numbers are disappointing and stark. Research completed by Target Analytics® in 2015 shows that: Only 29% of first-time donors renewed their gifts.

Monthly Giving: 4 Ways to Improve Donor Retention and Recruit Sustainers

Connection Cafe

As we all know, the key with improving donor retention rates is to get that important second gift as soon as possible, preferably within the first 3 months. 4 Ways to Improve Donor Retention Rates with Monthly Giving. You’ll have to see what works best for your organization, fits into your communication schedule, and test what generates the highest number of new sustainers (and thus improves your donor retention rate right away).

Retention is the New Acquisition

Connection Cafe

While organizations focus on their development goal and raising money through major gifts, events, direct mail, grants and online, we continue to see a lack of focus on stewardship and retention. Yet, according to Adrian Sargeant and Elaine Jay, a 10% increase in donor retention can enhance the lifetime value of your donor base by up to 200%. . Every organization needs to increase their investment in stewardship and retention.

Using Online Community to Increase Member Retention

AFP Blog

Using Online Community to Increase Member Retention : Suppose you’re not obsessed with online communities like I am–you might wonder how online community can help increase member retention. To me, it’s just a given–retention is about keeping members engaged with both the association and other members.

Donor Retention vs. Donor Acquisition: What Research Shows About Overall Online Engagement

Connection Cafe

When asked by organizations whether their online fundraising programs should focus on donor acquisition or donor retention, I say, “Yes.”. We can see from the 2016 Luminate Online Benchmark Report that nonprofits are having success in both areas, but that between the two, efforts are skewed toward donor retention. While a disconcerting drop, this number alone doesn’t speak to retention vs. acquisition efforts.

Making Your First Donor Retention Calendar, Step by Step

Connection Cafe

According to Chuck Longfield , ten years ago the average retention rates of a newly acquired donor were roughly 33%. Make a donor retention calendar to keep your donors loyal! OK, so donor retention isn’t part of your job description. Step Two: Make your Donor Retention more Manageable by Creating a Thanking Policy. Step Three: Put it all Together in your Donor Retention Calendar. Once you know WHO to focus on, what does a donor retention calendar include?

Retention Round-up

Wild Apricot

This week''s Apricot Jam link round-up offers four posts with great ideas and insight into both member and donor retention. Apricot Jam

Top Challenges with Volunteer Engagement & Retention

Wild Apricot

Recently our Membership Advisory Group discussed their challenges with volunteer engagement and retention and offered up some advice and ideas to help their membership peers. Volunteers

One Thing Most Nonprofits Stink at (Donor Retention) and How You Can Change It in 2014

Connection Cafe

In 2013, Chuck Longfield was on a mission to shed light on the importance of donor retention in the nonprofit industry. According to Chuck, ten years ago the average retention rates of a newly acquired donor were roughly 33%. If the ten-year trend continues, we’ll eventually end up with donor retention rates under 20%. Adrian Sargeant says “a 10% increase in donor retention can increase the lifetime value of your donor database by 200%.”.

From an Event Manager | Focus on the End Goal: Donor Engagement + Retention

Connection Cafe

Initially, it was difficult to carve out time to take a step back and think about the bigger picture when it came to donor engagement and retention. With that in mind, here are some suggestions to include in your event work plans to put a focus on event attendee retention and engagement: Do your research. Nonprofit Fundraising donor retention engagement events Raiser's Edge NXT stewardship

“Donor retention by the numbers”: Q&A with Caity Craver and Gary Carr

3rd Sector Labs

Third Sector Labs recently co-hosted a donor retention webinar with Caity Craver , CEO of DonorTrends. The topic – “Donor Retention by the Numbers: Demystifying the Leaky Bucket” – focused on how to properly measure donor retention and then use that data to drive improved fundraising results. Donor retention by the numbers: you’ve got questions, we’ve got answers. QUESTION: Where can I get benchmarks for retention by sector?

Lessons from a Fundraising Insider: How our Donor Retention Rates grew to 43%

Connection Cafe

We impact over 10,000 lives each year, and in 2013 we had a donor retention rate of 43% ( compared to 27% ). I’m not writing this post to tell you the ‘5 Sure Fire Ways to Increase Your Donor Retention’. So, what led to our above industry average donor retention rates? Want to improve your donor retention rates? For additional insight to boost your donor retention rates, check out the latest npEXPERTS eBook! .

Three Simple Donor Retention Strategies for Social Media

John Haydon

Donor retention rates declined from 50% in 2006 to less than 39% in 2014. The post Three Simple Donor Retention Strategies for Social Media appeared first on John Haydon. Online Fundraising Donor Cultivation donor retention social media During this period, donors have gotten more selective about the nonprofits they support. And they’ve also gotten better at tuning out messages that aren’t interesting.

How to Use Social Media Insights to Drive Patient Engagement and Donor Retention 

Connection Cafe

Healthcare Social Media donor retention healthcare fundraising Patient Engagement Social Insights Social Media for NonprofitsThe modern healthcare market is a competitive environment in which hospital foundations need to compete for donors. These donors are smart, mobile and social-savvy. They have an abundance of choices as to where they want to contribute and how often. . There are ways to gauge what your donors are saying and address them according to their preferences.

3 Fundraising Experts Sound off on Donor Retention from the Donors Perspective

Connection Cafe

Average first year donor retention rates of 27% would suggest that donors don’t have the best feelings about the nonprofits they’re supporting. They’ve shared some very valuable insights below – stuff that get’s right to the heart of the matter – the relationships we have with our donors and how to improve our donor retention rates. Online Fundraising donor retention fundraising ideas fundraising tips pamela grow rachel muir Shanon Doolittle

Sound 197

Future of Giving: Coordination, Donor Retention & Artificial Intelligence

Beth Kanter

” In our article for the SSIR Blog, Rehumanizing Fundraising with Artificial Intelligence we make the case that this is a pivotal moment for nonprofits to rethink fundraising and focus on donor retention rates. spark and honey: Future of Giving Report.

Love Thy Donor: 5 Ways to Increase Donor Retention

NonProfit Hub

It has become a fairly common factoid that around 60% of new donors only give once to that cause—however, showing love to your donors can be one of the driving factors behind donor retention. Here are five ways to show your donors love to raise donor retention: Thank Donors for the Same Thing You Asked For. The post Love Thy Donor: 5 Ways to Increase Donor Retention appeared first on Nonprofit Hub. Featured Fundraising Human Resources donor Donors Love retention

Using Online Community to Increase Member Retention


And of course I was excited to get a chance to talk about my favorite subject, online community, with my friend Josh Paul , in the session we presented yesterday, Using Online Community to Increase Member Retention. Suppose you’re not obsessed with online communities like I am–you might wonder how online community can help increase member retention. A few weeks ago I was in Orlando at ASAE’s Great Ideas conference.

The 7 Keys to a Donor Retention Strategy Full of Thanks

Connection Cafe

If you want to build a transformational business model that moves your organization steadily forward (not two steps forward; three steps back), then you simply must put more resources into your donor retention strategy – more specifically, your gratitude program. Here are the 7 Keys to Improving Donor Retention and Enhancing Your Gratitude Program: 1. Check my ‘Gratitude = Retention’ Pinterest board for more ideas.

The Nonprofit Weekly Roundup: Secrets, Emails, and Tips for Better Donor Retention in 2014

Connection Cafe

In honor of the release of the newest npExperts ebook, Show the Love: Thoughtful Engagement to Retain Donors , this roundup all about retention. I mean, is it just me or is anyone else a little concerned that donor retention remains a lower priority for nonprofits across the industry? . Here are this week’s retention highlights: Want to know The Secret to Raising More in 2014 ? Donor retention. Nonprofit Donor Retention is Not as Hard as You Think.

How Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh Increased Member Conversion and Retention Rates

Connection Cafe

Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh utilized their resources to develop an innovative retention strategy. This article is part of the bbcon 2018 Speaker Series on npENGAGE. Get a taste of the 250+ sessions that will help your organization transform and have a bigger impact! Like it or not, technology is everywhere. While on vacation or a professional conference, you are probably exposed to innovative technology, increasing your engagement level.

How An Old Interview Approach Increased Our Volunteer Retention by 30%

Wild Apricot

If you’re experiencing low volunteer retention, you’re familiar with how much time and resources it can take to constantly market and recruit new volunteers. In my experience, one simple simple change to that process may dramatically improve volunteer retention. twentyhats elisa interview retention volunteerBut what most nonprofits don’t realize is that the problem may lie in how your candidates are interviewed.

How to R-E-S-P-E-C-T Your Way to Donor Retention

Connection Cafe

Donor retention is an absolute priority (again) for 2014. Yet the path to retention success remains elusive for many organizations. Please join me in thanking Frank Barry and the Blackbaud team for sharing donor retention guidance from some of the smartest fundraising experts out there. Here’s my #1 donor retention guidance for you—R-E-S-P-E-C-T your way to strong and long-lasting donor relationships. What’s still not working with your donor retention program?

4 Ways Thinking Like A Marketer Will Help Volunteer Retention


The good news is, a simple change in frame of mind when thinking about your volunteers could be all it takes to greatly improve retention and engagement. Better volunteer retention. The post 4 Ways Thinking Like A Marketer Will Help Volunteer Retention appeared first on Tech Impact Blog - Leaders in Non-Profit Technology. Image Courtesy of Blues By Starlight.

The 3 Principles of Fundraising Success: Donor Acquisition, Donor Retention, and Donor Upgrades

Connection Cafe

Now, we’ve been writing a lot recently about the importance of donor acquisition and retention to a successful fundraising program. Fundraising Stewardship Donor Acquisition donor retention Donor Stewardship fundraising ideas fundraising tips Jeff Haguewood Upgrading Donors Guest Post by Jeff Haguewood, a Co-Founder of Sidekick Solutions. Sidekick Solutions believes nonprofits are real-life heroes and helps nonprofit heroes succeed with nonprofit software.