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Church Online Giving

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8 Resources
article
5 of the Best Church Online Giving Platforms
This article compares online giving platforms in a format that’ s easy to read and...
software
SecureGive
This customizable giving platform provides many giving and reporting options for large...
software
Vanco Payment Solutions
This software offers online giving and electronic financial services for organizations...
article
Pandemic Presents Challenge to Church Giving
This article outlines how churches around the world are responding to the financial challenges...
software
eGive
This online donation software includes a variety of giving options to make it easy for...
periodical
Church Finance Today
This e-newsletter covers timely finance topics such as record keeping, business expenses,...
software
Givelify
This free mobile app empowers congregations to offer online giving.
software
SimpleGive: Online giving made simple
This customizable giving platform allows congregations to select a variety of services a la...

About the Contributor

Contributor
Beth McKee

Beth is the Center for Congregation's chief financial officer and director of internal operations. Beth is also an elder and deacon in the Presbyterian church.

Church Online Giving

From the first day that congregations open their doors, they will often be dependent on donations to help keep them afloat. Unlike businesses, which charge for their products and services, congregations often operate without anything for direct sale. People from all socioeconomic backgrounds, ethnicities, and occupations come to congregations for guidance and support. They will likely donate in order to help the group keep its doors open.

Now, congregations are finding ways to adapt to the modern environment. In the past, congregations would possibly send around a collection plate, and people would then put checks, cash, and anything else they could spare into the collection bin. And while there may still be a place for this, the process of donating to support congregations has also changed during the past few years. These days, many donations are moving online. With this in mind, church leaders might need to understand how church online giving works.

Most congregations are nonprofit organizations, and may not face the same regulatory challenges that additional businesses do. Regardless, churches still likely have to make it as easy as possible for members of the congregation to donate. That is where church management software can be helpful.

When religious leaders make online church giving easy, they can potentially make it easier for them to keep their doors open. No leader likely wants to miss out on a donation purely because someone was not able to donate to the church through the online portal. It might be the responsibility of church leaders to make online giving for churches easier for members of the congregation. When religious leaders focus on removing obstacles and barriers from the donation process, they may be able to make it easier for donations to flow in. What do church leaders need to know about the online donation process? What can they do to make it easier for members of the congregation to donate to the church? There are several key topics that can be good to understand.

Cash App for Churches

Most nonprofit organizations now depend on online donations to keep their doors open. Today, lots of people simply do not carry as much cash as they perhaps used to. Cash can be seen as risky, because if it is lost or misplaced, then it is gone forever. Furthermore, spending cash doesn't provide the same rewards as swiping a credit card might. If something happens to a credit card, it is relatively easy to call the credit card company and have that card canceled. Because people do not often carry as much cash as they used to, churches may not be able to collect as much money through a traditional collection plate. That is where a cash app for churches can be helpful.

There are numerous applications available that could help people donate to their churches. Church leaders might need to take advantage of mobile applications because many people prefer to donate using their phones. There are numerous options available, including Venmo for churches and the Givelify app. Many people out there are already using these applications to settle bills among family members and friends, and because these applications have become so popular, many businesses in the secular world are also using Venmo, Paypal, and other electronic applications for handling their transactions.

There are several factors that church leaders should perhaps consider when they are assessing church donation apps. First, how do these applications make money? When business transactions take place, these applications will usually charge a commission. This is not something that church leaders will likely want to pay, and so, these leaders may have to take a look at the guidelines of these applications. Because churches are nonprofit organizations, most of these applications would perhaps be willing to waive their commissions if they are simply asked. These applications understand that if people use the application to donate to their churches, they may go on to use the application for other transactions, as well. Then, the application can charge a commission on those transactions.

Church leaders should perhaps assess all the options for mobile donation apps. Making it possible for members of the congregation to donate using a mobile application can help the church increase its cash flow.

Church Giving App

Church leaders should potentially also consider the idea of building their own church donation app. There are some situations where religious leaders may face difficulty in finding an application that will be able to handle donations for the church without charging a commission. Instead of having to pay a commission to use another application, then, church leaders may want to build their own online giving app.

It does take some technical knowledge to build a church giving app. Church leaders should check with the technology team in order to explore this possibility first. Members of a technology team may have coding knowledge that they can use to help build an online donation app. Fortunately, though, these apps do not have to be complicated. They simply have to handle the donations that are coming from members of the congregation. With a few lines of code, it may be possible to build a good donation application for the church.

This application likely needs to be secure, as people are going to be using their personal financial information to donate to the church. Nobody wants to have their personal financial information stolen, after all, and it can be good for the church to promote a feeling of confidence among its members of the congregation in order for this application to be successful. The technology team might be able to make this happen.

Smaller churches may not have a technology professional on their staff, however, and that is okay! Instead, they might consider the option to commission a third party to do the application. Even though it will cost money to pay a third party to build this donation application, it might still be cheaper than paying a commission to use an application that already exists. If churches are able to build their own donation application, they can help foster a sense of community among members of the congregation. This could possibly be enough to increase cash flow for the church.

Church Giving Software

Collecting donations for the church can be important, but this is also only half the battle. After the money comes in, churches may also have to be able to manage their funds appropriately. Even though churches do not charge for their services, and they depend on donations from others to stay open, churches will still likely have bills to pay.

Church leaders should perhaps use church tithes and offering software. If church giving software is able to handle church online giving via PayPal, then church leaders might be able to set the church up for success moving forward. When looking for church giving software, church leaders may want to identify software programs that can accept a variety of payment methods. For example, a lot of people like to donate to the church using debit and credit cards. Credit cards often provide reward points which can be valuable for the holder. On the other hand, however, members of the congregation may prefer to give using other ways. For instance, Apple Pay, Google Pay, PayPal, and even cryptocurrency are all becoming more popular. If church leaders use donation offers that can handle a variety of payments, then they can accept payments from a wider base. The more donation forms they accept, the more money they can potentially collect, and this can go a long way toward finding a wide variety of church activities, including outreach events, new buildings, and repairs that could be required. This money can also be put towards new equipment which could be helpful for a larger congregation.

Churches should potentially take advantage of mobile applications, along with looking at management software. These programs can be far more robust than mobile applications. In addition to collecting donations, they can also manage the church’s funds. For example, these programs can be helpful for budgeting purposes. Churches can take a look at their expenses, their historical cash flow, major projects that are coming up, and at how much money there is to go around. Financial management can be critical to the survival of churches, and church giving software can help address these topics.

E Giving for Churches

Many church leaders out there might be waiting for times to simplify, as it was perhaps much easier when church leaders could simply pass around the collection plate and see who donated. But while there is always a place for the collection plate, online giving is likely here to stay. Church leaders who do not embrace online giving are missing out on significant cash flow opportunities. Fortunately, though, simple church online giving is still a possibility.

E giving for churches is not only the present but the future as well. Whether this involves Givelify or Online Offertory, church leaders may want to explore all the possibilities available to them. Even though churches are not-for-profit organizations, they still have to keep the lights on, pay the mortgage, and pay the salaries of the people on staff. And while there are volunteers, church equipment is still expensive. In order for churches to adequately serve the members of the congregation, they likely have to fund these activities. That is why churches might choose to take advantage of as many revenue streams as possible. This includes online giving, mobile giving, recurring payments, email auctions, and the collection plate.

Clearly, there are lots of resources that church leaders should perhaps explore. That is why pastors and leadership staff might take a look at the numerous resources available on the CRG. This is an expansive resource that can help churches figure out how they can effectively raise money in the modern era. In addition to thinking about donation applications, mobile applications, and donation software, church leaders can also explore other ways to raise money. When these church leaders educate themselves on all the opportunities available, they can work to maximize their cash flow opportunities. That way, they can receive the money they need to help fulfill their mission.

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