Top donation management software solutions

Fundraising and managing donations can be challenging, especially during busy campaigns or when you’re just starting your fundraising efforts. Finding the right fundraising software can make all the difference.

What is donation management software?

Donation management software helps nonprofits manage their relationships with donors. The software organizes and tracks data like donor contact information, demographics, donation history, and more. The software allows nonprofit staff and volunteers to access the information as needed for fundraising campaigns and marketing needs.

Why is donation management software crucial for nonprofit organizations?

Donation management software is essential to the donor management process. Not only does it help nonprofits to stay organized, but it makes it easier to track and then review essential data. Nonprofits can use the software to analyze trends and patterns, then modify their fundraising approaches to increase the chances of acquiring future donations.

Does donor management software integrate with other software?

Donor management software is designed to save nonprofits time and to be a valuable addition to your existing software. Many donor management platforms integrate with other software, including your existing customer relationship management (CRM), marketing tools, and financial software.

What are the common features of donation management software?

Quality donation management software offers the ability to create detailed donor profiles. The software should provide tracking of both recurring and one-time donations, and should provide automated reporting and the ability to segment your database and donations. It’s also common for software to include donor communication tools to support donor engagement.

What should you expect from donation management software as a nonprofit?

Donation management software should enhance and streamline the process of tracking donations and collecting donor data. It should be a helpful addition to your tools, allowing you to create a more strategic, data-based fundraising approach.

Quality donor management software can help streamline and organize fundraising efforts, facilitate online donations, develop donor relationships, and more. The following programs are some of the best available.

1. Jotform

Jotform offers many tools and forms that support donation management. Jotform’s donor information form template can capture all of the important details that a nonprofit needs to know about a donor. The online donation form is designed with donation form best practices in mind — it’s streamlined and easy to use, collecting only the necessary information to encourage completed donations instead of abandoned forms.

Jotform’s donation receipt template completes the process, ensuring that each donor receives a prompt thank-you message for their gift. This important step can help to increase donor retention.

For a fully integrated donation workflow, your organization can use the donation tracker template bundle, which includes a donation tracking form template, a donation tracker table template, and a thank-you letter PDF template. Whenever someone makes a donation through the form, their information automatically populates the donation tracker table in Jotform Tables. If a donation comes in through the mail, you can manually enter the information. And as donors submit donations through your form, their information will auto-populate the PDF template.

With Jotform Tables, you can manage your donation and donor information in one place.

You even have the ability to develop your own donation app with Jotform. Jotform Apps includes a Donation Box element. Just drag and drop the Donation Box into your app and  follow the prompts to connect it to one of our 30-plus payment processor integrations for seamless donation collection. Options include Stripe, Square, PayPal, Venmo, and more.

Once you’re done customizing your app, you can easily share it with your donors through a link or QR code, so they’ll be able to donate anytime, anywhere.

Pros:

  • 100-plus donation-related form templates that are fully customizable
  • Automated data collection through Jotform Tables
  • Ability to manage both donation and donor information in a single location
  • Integrates with 100-plus other tools like Mailchimp and Dropbox

Cons:

  • Lacks designated donor profiles

Key features: Customizable templates, drag-and-drop interface, automated data tracking via Jotform Tables, user-friendly tool

Pricing: Starter plan: Free, Bronze plan: $34/month, Silver plan: $39/month, Gold plan: $99/month, Enterprise plan: Custom pricing

2. Salesforce

Salesforce, the cloud-based CRM system, offers many solutions to help nonprofits drive fundraising. The Nonprofit Success Pack helps nonprofits manage donor data and payments, recurring donations, and more.

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Nonprofits can sign up for products like Insights Platform Data Integrity to help maximize the effectiveness of direct mail campaigns. With reports, analytics, and even the help of artificial intelligence, nonprofits can effectively manage fundraising and donations.

Pros:

  • Cloud-based CRM keeps donor, volunteer, and donation information in one place
  • Supports the grant management process
  • Easy-to-read reports

Cons:

  • Pricing is difficult to interpret, due to lots of add-ons
  • This more expensive tool may be beyond a nonprofit’s budget

Key features: Donor segmentation and source code creation, digital campaign development tools, data capture from all giving platforms, grant process support

Pricing: Starter plan: $25/month, Professional plan: $75/month, Enterprise plan: $150/month, Unlimited plan: $300/month

3. Salsa

Salsa offers multiple products for nonprofits. Salsa Engage is a digital engagement platform with valuable tools for workflow, online advocacy, and online fundraising management. It also features email and marketing automation and peer fundraising campaigns and event tools.

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Salsa CRM features rich donor profiles, list segmentation and direct mail, major gift cultivation, and powerful reporting tools to help nonprofits cultivate relationships and improve donor retention.

Pros:

  • Donor segmentation and individual donor history tracking capabilities
  • Extensive training and coaching resources
  • Automations to streamline workflows

Cons:

  • Can be difficult to navigate

Key features: Comprehensive reporting and analytics tools, detailed donor profiles, list segmentation, email marketing automation

Pricing: Upon request

4. DonorPerfect

When it comes to fundraising, DonorPerfect offers a complete online fundraising platform that can help increase campaign effectiveness and drive donations. This platform makes a nonprofit’s data available to an unlimited number of users for a centralized approach.

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Streamlined data entry; customized donation forms; and management for silent, live, mobile, and online fundraising options are just some of the features available. With five different plans, DonorPerfect is suitable for both small and large nonprofits.

Pros:

  • Events management tools for auctions, galas, and more
  • Comprehensive tracking for mailings, payments, grant applications, and more
  • Ability to automate gift acknowledgements

Cons:

  • Upper-tier plans are expensive
  • Limited support

Key features: Payment processing, personalized communications, report writer, grant and volunteer tracking

Pricing: Custom pricing starting from $99/month

5. Blackbaud

Dedicated to supporting social good organizations, Blackbaud offers a variety of services, including marketing and engagement, financial management, payment, and fundraising and relationship management tools.

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This CRM’s fundraising tools include eTapestry (a simple management tool for growing organizations), Raiser’s Edge NXT (a more comprehensive cloud-based fundraising and management tool), and more.

Pros:

  • Suitable for small to large nonprofits
  • Highly customizable
  • Comprehensive solutions, including donation and donor management, payment solutions, and marketing capabilities

Cons: 

  • Can be difficult to use and requires training
  • Potential security vulnerabilities; Blackbaud experienced a data breach in May of 2020

Key features: Donor research, list segmentation, detail-rich profiles, option to purchase consulting services with fundraising experts

Pricing: Upon request

6. Kindful

Kindful, a cloud-based CRM, offers fundraising, donor management, donor communications, and tracking and reporting tools. Top highlights include donor activity tracking, wealth screening and prospecting, unlimited donation pages, custom donation receipts, and pledge tracking.

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Kindful integrates with over 40 other apps and programs like Mailchimp, Constant Contact, PayPal, and more for seamless operations.

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Comprehensive fundraising and donor management tools
  • Integrations for payment processing, online fundraising and in-person fundraising

Cons:

  • Pricing can get expensive for larger donor lists

Key features: Donor lifecycle analytics, donor records management, donor communications, event management tools, peer-to-peer crowdfunding tools

Pricing: Based on number of donors: $1,000 donors costs $119/month, 25,000 donors costs $459/month, 60,000 donors costs $699/month

7. Little Green Light

Little Green Light helps simplify donor management with tools for relationship management, productivity, reports and analytics, and security and backups. Membership, volunteer, and alumni management helps nonprofits leverage existing connections, and detailed constituent profiles feature information on giving history, relationships, and more. Customizable forms, personalized emails, and integrated mail merge features facilitate streamlined communication, while gift tracking, goal tracking, and pledge tracking provide real-time updates about fundraising progress.

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Monthly subscriptions start at just $45 and reflect the number of constituents in a database, making this option ideal for smaller nonprofits.

Pros:

  • Allows you to track pledges, installments, grants, donations, and more
  • Supports bulk uploads and features a detailed contacts database
  • Integrates with many tools like Mailchimp and PayPal

Cons: 

  • Can be expensive for nonprofits with large contact lists

Key features: Customizable reports and real-time reporting, grant and endowment tracking, automated alerts and reminders, mail merge capabilities

Pricing: Based on number of donors: Up to 2,500 donors costs $486 per year, up to 80,000 donors costs $1,944 per year.

8. Bloomerang

Bloomerang is a comprehensive cloud-based donor database. The easy-to-navigate interface offers everything you’d expect from a nonprofit CRM: a view of every donor’s engagement level, online giving forms, email marketing tools, the ability to manage a nonprofit’s social media presence, and more.

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The system is designed to be easy to use. Five plans are available, but each plan comes with unlimited users.

Pros:

  • Features like a Generosity Score help to identify the potential donors
  • Ability to generate wealth reports pulled from multiple databases using DonorSearch
  • Tools include email marketing, donor communications, and donor surveys

Cons:

  • Limited customization options

Key features: Grant tracking, online giving, prospect research, list segmentation, email marketing, and reporting

Pricing: Based on number of donors. Up to 1,000 donors costs $119/month, up to 50,000 donors costs $699/month

9. Aplos

Designed for nonprofits and churches, Aplos offers a suite of marketing, accounting, fundraising, and donation management features. Some of the more unique features available include text-to-give messaging; the ability to create and send monthly, quarterly, or annual giving statements; and the ability to track pledges and follow up on commitments.

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At $59 per month, the Aplos Suite is one of the more economical monthly donation management subscriptions available.

Pros:

  • Many church management features
  • Quality reporting capabilities
  • Includes an unlimited number of donation forms

Cons:

  • Text message donation capability is a separate, add-on feature

Key features: Donor management, accept online donations and gifts, fund accounting software, email marketing

Pricing: Aplos Lite: $39.50/month, Aplos Core+: $69.50/month, Aplos Core & Advanced Accounting: custom pricing. Promotional discount pricing may be available.

10. NeonCRM

This cloud-based nonprofit CRM is versatile. While NeonCRM offers valuable donation management solutions, it also helps nonprofits plan events, track volunteers, and more. Fundraising and donor management software helps streamline the process of engaging donors, accepting donations, and providing receipts.

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This CRM allows you to track donor data, communicate with donors, and build relationships with the goal of increasing donations. Four plans are available, and all include features like unlimited users, forms, custom fields, ticket support, and more.

Pros:

  • Many fundraising tools like customized online donation forms and automated follow-up receipts
  • Mobile app available for iOS and Android devices
  • Comprehensive communication solutions, including donor segmentation and email

Cons:

  • Custom reports are difficult to generate
  • Volunteer module isn’t intuitive

Key features: Volunteer management, grant management, activities and notes tracking, donor relationship tracking, event management

Pricing: Essentials: starting at $99/month, Impact: starting at $199/month and Empower: starting at $399/month

11. Funraise

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Funraise is a nonprofit donor CRM that provides custom data reports to support the donor management process. Easy to use, the platform stores data in a central location. Nonprofits can organize that data in many different ways, according to factors like donor history, demographics, and household information to build relationships or make well-informed asks.

The CRM also integrates with many other programs, including Salesforce. Giving, the Funraise donor-facing app, makes it easy for donors to access their donation information, including donation summaries and receipts.

Pros:

  • Ability to organize donor data in many different ways according to different criteria
  • App lets donors easily access their donation information
  • Free plan available

Cons: 

  • The free plan doesn’t include reporting capabilities.

Key features: Donor portal app, donation management, automated emails, donation forms and pages, events and tickets

Pricing: Funraise offers a free plan. Pricing for Standard and Premium plans available upon request.

12. Virtuous

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Virtuous is a nonprofit CRM that also combines fundraising and marketing tools for comprehensive donor management. The platform focuses on responsive fundraising, which creates personalized donor journeys built around each individual’s needs. Automation helps to create those journeys and saves time on administrative tasks, while marketing and email capabilities support donor engagement. 

Virtuous also features tools to generate multiple types of donations, including online giving. The platform can also help nonprofits to plan and track giving during virtual, hybrid, and in-person events. 

Pros:

  • Many integrations including with Mailchimp, Eventbrite, HubSpot, and WordPress
  • Coaching available to support the onboarding process
  • Detailed reporting helps to support donor retention and engagement

Cons:

  • Live team training only available with higher-tier plans

Features: Task automation, personalized communications, predictive analytics, credit card and ACH payment processing, detailed donor profiles

Pricing: Starter plan: $400/month, pricing of Platform and Enterprise plans are available upon request.

13. DonorSnap

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DonorSnap is a donor management CRM that’s simple and flexible. Designed for nonprofits of all sizes, the CRM offers a comprehensive suite of solutions to help nonprofits to collect donations, thank and communicate with donors, and analyze data.

With DonorSnap, nonprofits can collect donations via credit card, debit card, and ACH. DonorSnap tools help nonprofits to engage with donors and monitor donor retention rates via reports. The platform even features an Automated Task Manager to save staff time when it comes to sending emails and managing donor information.

Pros:

  • Automated Task Manager helps to save staff time on tedious tasks
  • First 30 days are free
  • Support and training are included in every plan

Cons:

  • Pricing can get expensive for nonprofits with larger donor lists

Features: Custom dashboards, automated communications, event registrations, mobile app

Pricing: Depends on number of contacts: Up to 1,000 contacts costs $39/month, up to 5,000 contacts costs $79/month, up to 30,000 contacts costs $199/month

14. Givebutter

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Givebutter is a fundraising and donor management tool that’s available entirely for free. The platform collects optional tips from donors; nonprofits that choose to disable tips will pay platform fees ranging from 1 to 5 percent.

Givebutter features more than 100 free tools to support online fundraising. The platform’s CRM allows nonprofits to segment lists, build custom reports, and target certain groups of donors. Engagement tools like automated messaging and message analytics support donor communications.

Pros:

  • Free to use
  • Simple, easy-to-use platform
  • Support available by live chat or email

Cons:

  • A somewhat basic donation management solution

Key features: Message analytics, automated messaging, donor CRM, segmented lists, mobile app, online fundraising

Pricing: Free to use. However, nonprofits that disable tips will pay platform fees and transaction fees.

Finding the right software

These donor management systems all offer different benefits for different costs. When choosing a system for your nonprofit, consider some of your greatest challenges and look for a program that best meets those needs. Choosing the right program can save you time and frustration — and maximize the results of your fundraising efforts.

AUTHOR
A journalist and digital consultant, John Boitnott has worked for TV, newspapers, radio, and Internet companies for 25 years. He’s written for Inc.com, Fast Company, NBC, Entrepreneur, USA Today, and Business Insider, among others.

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