Overall Nonprofit Fundraising Results Flat in 2012 According to Latest Report
I have been anxiously awaiting the latest Blackbaud Index results for the final month of 2012 and happily realized they went a step further and released a year-in-review report called “Charitable Giving Report, How Nonprofit Fundraising Performed in 2012”. The report which analyzes overall and online giving results over a two year period from 2011 to 2012 had some great insights into what was a very unpredictable year. As I wrote last month in the post Nonprofit Fundraising Show Slight Increase According to Latest Blackbaud Index, the slight increase which occurred in November continued into December with an increase of 2.6%. However, having access to a focused overview on all of 2012 certainly put the whole year into perspective.
Overall Insights from data reflecting 3,144 nonprofit organizations representing $7.9 billion in fundraising revenue:
- Overall giving was flat for most of 2012 with a small overall growth of 1.7% compared to 2011. Although there were months in which we saw a small decrease the overall condition may not have been as bleak as we may have thought. However, it’s important to note that although we are making small strides towards a full recovery we are still not seeing revenue comparable to pre-recession levels.
- Broken down by organizational size, smaller organizations (those under $1 million in annual revenue) experienced the largest gains by 7.3% while medium sized organizations (revenues between $1 million and $10 million) grew by 2.7% and larger ones (revenues of over $10 million) only had growth of 0.3%. Clearly the size of an organization was a determining factor in growth in 2012.
- By subsectors, Faith Based (6.1%), Education (1.9%) and Environment/Animal Welfare (1.6%) were the top three subsectors to see fundraising growth, while International Affairs (-4.7%), Health Care (-3.4%) and Human Services (-1.2%) struggled throughout the year.
- 34.3% of overall giving occurred in the last quarter of the year, with December being the strongest month representing 17.69% of total fundraising revenue. Also interesting to note is that June is also the second strongest month throughout the year with 8.60% of total yearly donations and likely due to an end-of-fiscal-year push by organizations.
Online Insights is based on online giving data from 2,581 organizations representing $512 million in total fundraising revenue:
- 2012 saw an increase in online giving of 10.7% over 2011. Based on the size of the organization, medium sized nonprofits had the most growth in online giving with a 14.3% increase, while smaller organizations saw an 11.8% increase and large organizations 7.2%. More and more nonprofits are seeing a return in investment on online tools, specifically those in disaster response giving.
- Education K-12 was the largest online giving increase by 17.9%, followed closely by Public/Society Benefit 17.1% and Human Services rounded the top three with an increase of 15.7%. Although all subsectors experienced an increase in online giving the lowest three included International Affairs (1.1%), Environment/Animal Welfare (5.3%) and Healthcare (6.6%). Interesting to note is that online channels are most popular during disaster relief fundraising events such as Hurricane Sandy related giving boosted end-of-year online giving. However the challenge lies in retaining these donors in the long-term.
- Traditional giving channels still dominate the fundraising landscape as only 7% of overall giving was done online which represented an increase of 0.7% from the previous year (6.3%) but still shy from the 2010 all-time high of 7.6% which was in response to the Haiti earthquake relief effort. There clearly is a lot of room for growth in this giving channel and I predict these numbers to grow exponentially over the next one to two years.
The Charitable Giving Report, How Nonprofit Fundraising Performed in 2012 report summarizes that “overall giving is not likely to increase significantly until there is sustained growth in new donors, nonprofits rebuild their multi-year donor base, and overall donor retention improves” .
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Miratel Solutions is a Toronto call centre, eBusiness, and letter shop mail house specializing in professional fundraising services including telephone fundraising, online fundraising, lottery services, donation caging, donation processing and other donor management services. We are committed to our CSR business values in all contact centre services and mail house operations and advancing the missions of the nonprofits we proudly serve.