(Guest post by Todd Turner)
Successful fundraising isn’t only about knowing your audience; it’s also about providing tools that empower them to donate whenever and wherever they are compelled to support your cause. Here are some tips to make your donation forms mobile friendly.
Do your forms load quickly? Mobile functionality involves more than allowing your online donation form to automatically adjust to a mobile device’s screen size or orientation, especially given the importance of a nonprofit’s ability to convert a user’s “real time” emotional response into a tangible donation. Load times for site and mobile forms should be less than five seconds — the maximum amount of time a majority of consumers report they’ll wait before abandoning an ecommerce website entirely.
Have you removed unnecessary fields? The more information you request on your mobile donation form, the more likely prospective donors will become frustrated and decide not to make a gift. Ideally, the mobile donation form itself should only include: name (with an option for one-step login with social media credentials) billing address, email (optional), phone (one contact number only, and optional) and payment choice/information. According to The NonProfit Times, the less information a person must complete, the higher the donor conversion rate.
Do you use strong calls to action? The call to action language and type of payment security can increase the likelihood of mobile donation conversion. For example, replacing call-to-action button language with a phrase like “support [cause’s name]” in lieu of impersonal words like “submit” can increase dollars per page view. Visible “cues” that ensure a secure payment transaction have also been shown to increase mobile donor conversion. Also, display “average” donation amounts with touch control features like “plus” or “minus” signs (instead of a drop-down menu) along with the option to type a dollar amount, to simplify the mobile donor’s checkout experience.
Have you confirmed the mobile experience for every point of entry? Does your mobile experience introduce unnecessary “steps within steps” based on the many ways donors could access your mobile donation form? For example, by clicking a link in an email you sent to them directly; from an email forwarded to a new supporter from an existing donor, or for visitors who come directly from your website. If you solicit a past donor through email, for example, the mobile donation form he/she is “served” should recognize him/her as a past donor and generate the relevantly stored data. Allow both new and returning donors to establish a login and/or sign-in — but don’t make it required. Similarly, ensure that users aren’t forced to repeat steps or go backward in the donation process, should they decide to create a login or research the average donor amounts of peers, before completing the checkout process.
Do you allow donors to use multile payment methods? Entering credit card information on a mobile device can be cumbersome. Though user rates behind mobile wallets and contactless payment tools aren’t yet widely adopted, retailer-specific wallet apps like that from Starbucks, and even virtual currency like Bitcoin are on the rise. Equipping your mobile donation form to accept these payments may require little more than inserting a bit of code (e.g. Google Wallet has a ready-made “donate” button specifically designed for nonprofits) can increase the convenience you offer donors — and likelihood you’ll convert them.
The rules of mobile consumer engagement and conversion apply as much for a nonprofit as they do for ecommerce retailers. By ensuring that your mobile donation forms follow best practices used by ecommerce retailers, you’ll will provide donors with the mobile options that fit their lives, to build continued support for your cause.
Todd Turner is the President of LogoMagnet, a custom design magnet company that produces and distributes magnets for schools, nonprofits, sports teams and more.