This week we celebrate Thanksgiving, and practice gratitude for family, friends and good food. This season of thankfulness leads into a season of giving, beginning with Giving Tuesday next week, and continuing through the end of the year. While end-of-year giving is a longstanding tradition, this year fundraisers and non-profits need to be prepared as donors break from tradition and give more online.
According to Network for Good and the Chronicle of Philanthropy, online giving has increased significantly so far in 2016. Compared to this same week last year, donors gave 34.0% and made 37.4% more individual donations. These online gifts went largely to human services organizations — 505,386 gifts totaling $67,791,502. Donors also showed strong support for education this year, with 254,850 contributions totaling $44,540,910. This year's giving trends also demonstrate the importance of engaging a large audience in any online giving campaign, the most common gift amounts were just $25 and $50.
This growth in online giving is not unsurprising given the increase in opportunities and platforms for online giving. After rolling out a Donate button for non-profit pages last year, Facebook recently launched a new fundraising tool that allows individuals to host fundraisers on their profiles for their favorite causes. The social networking platform also allows users to add a Donate call-to-action button to its increasingly popular Facebook Live video feature. Looking to boost giving internally? SwearJar is a bot for Slack, the popular team messaging app, that will automatically track swear words and team buzzwords in communication and make a charitable contribution for each offense.
This year, we're thankful for online giving tools that make it easier to reach new donors and engage them with our passion projects. More importantly, we're thankful for the individuals who give back this year and every year to support good works.