- Is your website set up for tribute gifts?
- Do the embedded links work in your website and emails?
- Is your physical address readily available?
- Does an actual person answer your phone?
When is the last time you went on your organization’s website and proceeded to use it as a donor would to make a gift? Raise your hand if the answer is “never.”
When was the last time you called your organization’s public line from an unnamed phone, and asked how you’d go about making a gift? Did you get a live person? The right answer? Were you sent to the correct department?
How about the mail-in cards sent with gift campaigns — have you checked to see that the address is valid and that the cards go to a box that is checked constantly? Do you know who is responsible for checking it — and making sure it is routed to the correct person?
As a development officer, it’s your job to know all these things. You should make sure every opportunity for a donor to make a gift is easily accessible from multiple points.
Many people are fearful of websites and want to talk to a live person. Have a phone line set up with a savvy individual who can direct the caller to the appropriate development officer.
Those with computer skills can get frustrated if the links are out of date or lead to an out-of-date page with names they don’t recognize. They can be turned away by lack of information on how to make a tribute gift.
Follow-up is crucial for those donors, expecting acknowledgement for a gift they sent in someone else’s name.
What happens if a donor sends a cash gift, and it winds up in an office not checked for months? It’s not only embarrassing, but it can cost your organization donor trust if word gets around you’re not paying attention to incoming money.