December 18, 2013

Online Giving in Holiday Season Grows 17% Over 2012

Online donations from November 1 to mid-December are 17 percent higher than in the same period last year, according to Network for Good, a nonprofit that processes gifts made electronically.

Donations rose to $37.4-million, up from $31.9-million during the same period in 2012.

Donors are also contributing in bigger amounts: The average gift size grew 12 percent from 2012, to $139 from $124.

Network for Good credits Giving Tuesday, now in its second year, for helping to spark online contributions. On December 3, a day nonprofits joined forces nationwide to promote charitable giving, the organization processed $1.8-million in gifts, up from $1-million during Giving Tuesday 2012.

“The massive increase in activity that we saw has really helped to jump-start the giving season,” says Caryn Stein, director of content strategy at Network for Good.

People were primed to make a donation after Thanksgiving, she says, in part because Giving Tuesday attracted more media attention in its second year.

But Ms. Stein says another reason for growth is the popularity in giving online and the increasing sophistication charities show in making web appeals part their year-end campaigns.

Using data collected by Network for Good, The Chronicle has tracked daily online-fundraising totals for more than 14,000 charities over three years.