What is Online Giving?
Online Giving allows people to give financially to your church using the internet. This means that people can leave a gift without even having to visit the church building. The way we pay for things is changing. More and more transactions are cashless and receiving donations or payments digitally is now more important than ever. Online giving is an easy method for people to give regularly, or give a one-off donation, and is great for visitors to the church, noew comers who want to set up a quick gift, and those who don't carry cash. It's a great mechanism to include in your church to make giving easier for more people.
Why do I need Online Giving?
An Online Giving page can be shared across church websites, Facebook pages, newsletters, weekly emails, and any form of communication coming out of the church. This enables more people to have the option to give. Those churches holding online services can still receive donations through online giving. Using the premium Give A Little account from Parish Buying, it is much easier to collect Gift Aid and therefore maximise all donations to your church.
You can access a free online giving account through Parish Buying. This includes the premium version of Give A Little, allowing you to collect Gift Aid from your givers as well as being able to customise the look of your giving campaign. There is guidance on the Parish Buying website for how to access this premium account and begin to make the most out of online giving. Click here to download a quick and easy introduction to setting up this online account.
Another benefit of being registered with Parish Buying, and having an online giving account, is that you can purchase a contactless giving device if you wish. Your online account can be used via an app on these devices, so your giving campaign can be accessed on both the device and the online page. Having a contactless giving device provides another mechanism for giving. There is no obligation to have one of these because your online giving account may be effective at collecting donations from your community, but it is useful to consider offering as many giving mechanisms as possible to potential givers.
Two things to note:
- These Give A Little premium accounts are free due to a contribution made by the Church of England, the monthly subscription usually costs £10. This is why it is so important to sign up through Parish Buying.
- Every donation taken through Give A Little is subject to a banking charge of 1.95% per transaction, but this deal represents the best value currently available to churches.
How Can I Make the Most out of Online Giving?
Setting up an account won't mean the donations will come flooding in! There are still things to consider:
- Promote your giving account. This can be on your website, A Church Near You, social media and on printed materials. This film tells you more: https://vimeo.com/419983855
- Create a QR code for your giving page. This enables givers to scan the code with their smartphone and be taken straight to your online giving page. Find out more regarding QR codes and how to use them here.
- Explain the need for giving. It may not be enough to simply put your giving page link online. Do you explain the needs of your church, perhaps say you wish to be warm, hospitable and welcoming or talk about vital mission work? Do you thank people for their generosity and explain how their gifts have made a difference?
- Tell a good story about your church on Facebook or on your printed leaflets and invite people to donate. Some non church-goers like to support local community causes or historic buildings so consider messaging out to other Facebook community groups or send leaflets out into the wider community.
- Make online giving part of your ‘digital liturgy’. If you have an online service, could you include a regular form of words to invite people to give?
- Make use of the Church of England's animation about giving. Find it in your ACNY resource section and personalise it with your own giving details. View the film here: https://vimeo.com/434326212
- Remember that online giving is only one mechanism for giving and that other forms of giving are still very valuable as people's confidence develops. Keep existing methods and aim to introduce online giving gently and sensitively to your community.
Webinar: How to Set Up Online Giving & Use QR Codes
Watch the video below by Stewardship Officer Janet Edmond to find out How to Set Up Online Giving for your Church. All links to the information in the video can be found within the PDF copy of the presentation below.
You can access the links from the above video using the presentation below:
What Have Other Churches Done?
Find out how other churches are using their online giving page alongside their contactless device here.
Getting Digital Giving Ready for Christmas:
There are many resources available to publicise your online giving page during the festive period. Take a look!
Poster, with space for your Online Giving QR Code: here
Pew Card, with space for your church logo and QR code: here
Online Giving Page template design on Canva: here
Contactless Giving Device (Payaz or CollecTin) background design: here