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5 Signs You’ve Outgrown PayPal Fundraising

PayPal’s online fundraising tools are a staple for beginner nonprofits. When you’re just getting started, the low transaction fees and access to basic features are perfect! But many nonprofits find they need a PayPal Alternative to help them continue to grow. Here are 5 signs you’ve outgrown PayPal and are ready for something new.

1:) You’re running multiple campaigns

If you’re running multiple campaigns on a variety of channels, you’re probably ready to graduate to a more robust set of tools than PayPal can offer.

Running concurrent campaigns will be more successful if you have the tools to individually manage them. That means separate forms, separate automated receipts, separate branding – the works. It might be possible with a platform like PayPal, but managing multiple campaigns will be easier with a more complete platform.

2:) You just redesigned your website

Your brand is a huge part of a donor’s decision to give. They love your work and the people you help, and your brand connects them with what they love. If you’ve just redesigned your website, you know how important your brand is!

That brand should extend to your donation page, too. As a rule, branded donation forms result in more completed donations than non-branded forms, and the donations that are completed are generally higher than completed donations on non-branded pages.

If you’ve redesigned your page, you’ll want to make sure your donation form is branded to look like the rest of your site. Having a simple donation form works when you’re just getting started. But when you’ve got an established brand and a beautiful site with a great look and feel, you’ve outgrown the basics! It’s time to put together a donation form that’s as nice-looking as the rest of your site.

3:) You’re refocusing on donor experiences

Good branding is only a fraction of what goes into a donor’s experience. Little elements – the way your form fields are organized, the wording on your form elements, etc. – have a direct influence on whether or not someone gives to you.

When you’re starting up your nonprofit, the actual donor experience is less of a priority than hammering out your nonprofit’s story and starting to build a reputation in your community. But, after you’ve nailed down your operations, it really is time to think about how your donation form affects your donors.

PayPal is a handy processor that’s easy to set up, but its donor experience doesn’t match its utility. When you’re ready to optimize your donor’s experiences during and after their donation, it’s time to look for a platform that’s tailored specifically to nonprofits and their supporters.

4:) Your donors want to make recurring donations

This could technically fall under the “donor experiences” headline. If your donors are asking to set up recurring donations (or if you’re starting a recurring giving campaign), you might want to look for an online donation platform that’s set up specifically for nonprofits and their donors.

PayPal can support recurring donations, but the function isn’t ideal for nonprofits or donors. Recurring gifts have an additional fee associated with them, and they’re not especially easy for donors to manage.

You’re probably not going to set up a recurring donation campaign when you’re a brand new nonprofit. But, when you get to that point, it’s time to consider a platform that lets you (and your donors!) track and manage recurring donations.

5:) You need fast access to money

New nonprofits tend to move a little more slowly than their established counterparts when it comes to building and launching programs. You have to start everything from scratch! It’s a ton of work and it takes time. Quickly getting donations into your bank account isn’t terribly urgent (although it’s always nice!), largely because it takes a little extra time to build and launch campaigns and programs.

When you’re more established and have a few campaigns under your belt, you’ll find yourself needing faster access to the money you raise – you’ve got more programs and expenditures coming up! The longer turnaround time PayPal needs to collect money and transfer it to your account becomes more of an obstacle. If you find yourself needing faster access to your money, consider looking into a platform built specifically for nonprofits.

6:) But What If My Donors Are Used to Using PayPal?

PayPal, at its heart, is a way to send and receive money. That’s its core function. While its emphasis on utility makes it a less-than-ideal option for a growing nonprofit, it is commonly used among people who often shop online.

The beautiful thing about PayPal, though, is that it’s relatively easy to offer as a payment option on your donation form, even if you’re not using it as your online fundraising tool. If you’re worried about your donors who like to use PayPal for online transactions, ask about using it as a payment method on your donation form. Your donors can use it just like they would use a credit card or eCheck. That way, your donors can get the optimal donation process that goes with a nonprofit-focused platform and the convenience of paying with their existing PayPal account.

PayPal is a great way to raise money for your new nonprofit. But keep an eye out for signs that you’re outgrowing it! Your donors will thank you.

Qgiv is an online fundraising platform that is designed to help nonprofits grow, thrive, and raise more money online. Thousands of nonprofits have used Qgiv’s tools to raise over half a billion dollars online. To learn more about how nonprofits are using Qgiv’s tools to succeed, visit us online at

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