Flexible digital donations will lead to increased and more spontaneous charitable giving

Charity donations would increase over time if people had access to digital solutions that enabled them to easily dial-up or dial-down their regular donation to suit their finances. That’s the message from digital payments expert PayPoint, which has commissioned research into the effect of the pandemic on charitable donations.

The company found that nearly two thirds (64%) of people who make regular donations to a charity would welcome the flexibility to change the amount they donated and when. A further 42% went on to say that if they had the means to do this, they would give more over a period of time than they do currently on a fixed monthly donation.

“This is great news for the charity sector and demonstrates that despite the economic fallout of Coronavirus, the public’s appetite to give has not been dampened,” comments, Danny Vant, Client Services Director at PayPoint. “As people’s disposable income fluctuates, it’s natural that their ability to make charitable donations will also ebb and flow. So, providing them with practical digital solutions to simply change their monthly donation is an easy way for charities to facilitate increased donations in the long run.”

Indeed, it’s clear from PayPoint’s research that keeping digital donations going remains front of mind for many charity supporters. Although 42% of people acknowledge that changes to their financial circumstances might stop them making donations, almost half (46%) of those asked would rather suspend regular donations to a charity until they were on a more positive financial footing, than cancel them altogether.

PayPoint’s research also revealed that while 40% of people made no change to how they donated to charity during the pandemic, 1 in 5 had switched to donating to smaller, local charities and the same amount of people wanted to support charities helping UK families facing hardship.

Evidently, the impact of the pandemic on the UK has made people look closer to home and highlights a desire for people to be more spontaneous and adaptable with their charitable giving. Of course, this means charities must match this desire with the agility to reach out for and accept any impulsive donations, using suitable payment options such as text donations and flexible direct debits.

The research by PayPoint, which acquired charity specialist payment provider RSM2000 in April this year, supports the fieldwork carried out in August by the Charities Aid Foundation (CAF). The organisation found that more than two in five (45%) of charities questioned have already increased their card, contactless and digital payment capability.

Danny Vant concludes, “Although traditional fundraising activities are not lost, it’s clear from our research that those charities, big and small, which have already shifted to digital are likely to be reaping the most rewards. Providing multiple methods of payment for people not only opens the door wide for unprompted charitable gifts via online engagement, but also gives donators the power to raise the value of their regular charitable donations when they are financially able.”