Fundraising Success Checklist: 12 Must-Test Items


Fundraising Success Checklist: 12 Must-Test Items

Why are we talking about a fundraising success checklist of must-test items to ensure fundraising success? Well, we're heading into the busy end-of-year fundraising season...already! Accepting online donations is critical for nonprofit fundraising. But only if your website and donation pages are optimized for ease of use. Nothing is worse than losing a donor because of a glitchy or confusing online giving experience.

But why do you need to test if everything worked fine for your last fundraising campaign? Just because your pledge forms, donation forms, and payment processor worked last year doesn't necessarily mean you can turn everything back on for your campaign and it will work flawlessly again. Remember, during this year there were updates to your website platform, plugins may have been added, and more. That's why thoroughly testing all your website items that affect your campaign is crucial prior to launching any online fundraising initiative.

Implementing online donations can significantly boost nonprofit fundraising. But only if you optimize the giving experience for donors. According to Nonprofit Tech for Good, the average donation page abandonment rate is 65%. Don't let technical issues sabotage your campaign.

Follow these 12 must-test items to rigorously test your nonprofit's website and donation pages before going live:

Optimize for Speed

Labtop with a loading bar showing progressPage load time is the amount of time it takes for a web page to fully load. It's measured in seconds and is an indicator of your website's performance.

Needless to say, it has a huge impact on donor engagement and satisfaction. According to Google, 53% of mobile site visitors leave a page that takes longer than 3 seconds to load.

Every second of delay could result in a 7% loss in conversions according to Hubspot.

Check Mobile Responsiveness

With 60% of donations now occurring on mobile devices according to Nonprofit Tech for Good, responsiveness is critical.

  • Use Google Mobile-Friendly test to check your site.
  • Ensure donation forms fit on small screens, the text doesn't overlap, and calls-to-action (CTAs) are tap-friendly.
  • Resolve any zooming or horizontal scrolling issues.

Validate Forms

Go through each field in your donation forms and ensure proper validation.

  • Set required fields and data formats.
  • Customize error messages to clearly guide donors.
  • Fix bugs early to prevent donor frustration.

Process Test Donations

Person holding credit card and paying onlineTest processing several amounts of donations with various payment types.

  • Watch for errors or lag when submitting forms.
  • Confirm number formatting passes validation.
  • Partner with your payment processor to identify and troubleshoot integration issues.

Confirm Donations

Set up clear confirmation/thank you screens and instant emailed receipts after online gifts.

  • Check that all donor and payment details are accurate in receipts.
  • Confirm donors can easily print receipts for their records and that the data is formatted properly.

Handle Errors Gracefully

Simulate declined credit cards and other failures.

  • Make sure error messages are polite and the webpage guides donors to either retry or contact your customer service for assistance. 
  • Avoid losing donors due to errors.

Remove Friction in Donor Journey

Assess page flows to ensure donors can smoothly navigate to complete a gift.

  • Eliminate unnecessary steps or distractions.
  • Clearly signal the next actions through CTAs and messaging.

Check Security Seals

Install TrustGuard or Norton Secured SSL seals.

  • Test that seals are visible during transactions to provide donors with confidence that your site is secure.
  • HTTPS URL and padlock icon should display as well.

Ensure Accessibility

Use web accessibility checkers like WAVE to analyze color contrast, ARIA tags, keyboard navigation.

Cross-Browser Test

Conduct exhaustive testing on Chrome, Firefox, Safari, Edge, and other browsers.

  • Remember, many donors may use older browsers.
  • Fix functionality bugs and styling quirks for a consistent experience across browsers.

Implement Analytics Tracking

Install Google Analytics 4 tracking pixels.

  • Measure key metrics like donation conversion rates, time on page, and average gift amounts.
  • Be sure to test that tracking is working by making a test donation and ensuring data is captured.

Fundraising Success Checklist

By comprehensively testing these aspects of your nonprofit donation pages, you can identify and resolve issues before launch. This will lead to higher conversion rates and donor satisfaction. Don't leave gift completion up to chance - plan ahead with rigorous website tests. Contact us if you need help assessing your nonprofit's online giving readiness!

If you'd like a 1-page checklist of these items to keep handy for your team, download a copy today!

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