By now, you probably understand at least some of the benefits of starting an e-giving program with NCS. With a simple, easy –to-use interface you’re appealing to a new generation of church-goers with a system that’s similar to most of the e-commerce sites that they already use. But one benefit that is generally overlooked by churches (even those that have already started using e-giving) is the potential for a more stable stream of donations.
What do we mean by “stable donations”? If your church is like most, you tend to see a fluctuation in donations around major seasons and times of worship, notably Christmas and Easter. This isn’t a bad thing and makes perfect sense: both seasons invoke feelings of generosity and tend to lead to a spike in church attendance. However, on the other side of the spectrum there tends to be a large drop in donations during certain periods of the year, particularly the summer months. With the kids out of school, more people tend to go on vacation and miss services and, consequently, give less.
This routine of peaks and valleys is something that most churches experience and can make planning and budgeting extremely difficult. After all how can you expect to prepare for a fiscal year when your donation stream is so unpredictable? Just because this is a common problem doesn’t mean that there isn’t a solution; and e-giving is the perfect tool to fix it.
The Power of Recurring Donations
With e-giving, not only do your members get a system that makes donating fast and easy, they also get the ability to create their own giving schedule. Having a set donation schedule further enhances the convenience of e-giving, and also pays huge dividends to your church.
Consider this: even the most consistent members of your congregation will miss services occasionally and, in turn, will miss a week of donations. Some of these members may compensate for the missed week by increasing their donation the following week, but this isn’t a standard practice. Let’s say that the average member of your congregation gives $20 a week and misses four services over the course of the year. This equates to $80 in lost donations from just one member or family. Now, let’s say that you have 50 “active” members or families. If each family misses four weeks a year, you’re missing out on approximately $4,000 in donations per year.
Implementing an e-giving system while stressing recurring donation schedules will go a long way towards recouping these donations that you have been losing in years prior. With e-giving your members also have the ability to customize their schedule to find the perfect fit for them. They can give to multiple funds simultaneously while setting up different frequencies for each. They can also make changes to these schedules at any time.
The ability to set a donation schedule is a mutually beneficial feature, but is not one that every church has been able to take advantage of. Much like e-giving, in general, you need to promote recurring giving to your members and highlight the advantages for both you and them. For some tips on how to promote this effectively, stay tuned for part two of our article!