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Harnessing the power of data in a fundraising environment can breed the misconception that charities lose a valuable connection with donors.

When relying on figures and numbers, many believe that donors become just a number in a report, or that it’s impossible to genuiney get to know those who support you the most.

While there will never be a replacement for authentic relationship-building with donors forged by picking up the phone and meeting face-to-face, your data is a pivotal step that will help you identify those connections.

If you’re not currently utilising the potential of data to strengthen fundraising programs and grow income, here’s what your data can teach you about your donors.

The time of day they prefer to donate

Donor data available through web and email analysis allows you to identify trends in the time of day a donor prefers to make their gift.

Patterns may include in the evening while casually surfing the internet. On a Monday morning when paying bills, or during a lunch break while catching up on emails. By comparison, a cheque received in the mail could have been written at any time and provides no indication about habits or routine.

How this information will grow income:

Identifying trends in donation time means you can segment data and time the receipt of email campaigns at precisely the time the donor prefers to give meaning they’re already ready to take action when they receive the appeal.

How they prefer to communicate

Understanding donor preference is critical to successful fundraising outcomes. If a mail recipient deletes appeal emails without even reading them, yet continues to respond by mail to direct mail appeals, you can make an informed assumption that there’s no longer a need to be included in email campaigns. Similarly, if a donor always donates online but they’ve never received email communication, it’s worth testing to see if they read your emails. How this information will grow income: By tracking donor response to digital campaigns, appeals can be tailored to meet donor needs exactly. If a donor doesn’t have to change their habits surrounding giving, they’re more likely to donate naturally.

The time of year they like to donate

Likely, your appeal data is already segmented by frequency, but behind the scenes analysis can help further personalise communications. While Christmas and tax appeals are historically the most popular times to donate, sophisticated data tracking can help identify the frequency of donations (such as monthly, annually or every Monday for example) to help you devise a personalised communication plan that meets those actions.

How this information will grow income: Contacting a donor too frequently is just as detrimental as not contacting them frequently enough. Avoid bombarding donors or not asking them for money when appropriate by tailoring a communication plan based on previous giving history. /p>

How long they spend on your website

Some donors go straight to the donation page while others prefer to take their time reading testimonials and mulling over the content. Using sophisticated website analysis, you can see exactly how long a visitor spends on the site and the actions they take when they get there.

How this information will grow income:

Understanding what website visitors are responding to on the website will help you create content that engages an audience and encourages action. If people aren’t spending any time looking at your content (which takes time to create) you know it’s time to re-design a content strategy to help engage the target audience. Capitalising on the benefits of data analysis will help you tailor communications and meet the needs of your donors at every step. To find out how SupporterHub can help you get to know your donors better, enquire about our free trial today.