Online nonprofit fundraising is on the rise, with explosive growth in sustaining gifts and a larger audience of supporters reached via social networks, according to an analysis of leading US nonprofits.
Email list is up 15%, online revenue grew 21% from 2012 levels, and the number of Twitter followers increased 264% over the past year, the 2013 eNonprofit Benchmarks Study, conducted by M+R Strategic Services and NTEN, found.
However, the long-term decline of email response rates is continuing, even as online revenues increase and social media audiences grow, according to the analysis.
Click-through rates for fundraising messages, for example, declined steeply (down 27% from 2011); consequently, fundraising response rates dropped to 0.07%—a 21% decrease from the prior year.
Below, additional findings from the 2013 eNonprofit Benchmarks Study, including an infographic, tables, and the following key findings and infographic:
- A 21% year-over-year increase in online revenue overall, with only International groups recording a decline in online giving.
- A sharp decline in certain key email metrics, such as a 14% decline in click-through rates for advocacy messages and 27% decline for fundraising messages. Those declines were driven mostly by Rights and International groups, whereas advocacy messages sent on behalf of Environmental groups performed best.
- Since 2011, online monthly giving grew 43%, or more than twice as fast as one-time giving. Although still a small percentage of overall giving, sustaining gifts for International groups now account for18% of revenue.
- Email list sizes continue to grow for all sectors and sizes, up an average of 15% in 2012. Wildlife and Animal Welfare groups increased their list size the most: 32% from 2011 levels.
- Social media audience growth outpaced that of email lists. Facebook audiences grew an average of 46%; Twitter followers increased 264%. Facebook remains the primary social network for connecting with supporters, reaching 149 Facebook fans for every 1,000 email subscribers.
The following table displays various email metrics by nonprofit message type: