Ten UK charity fundraising websites compared

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Ten UK charity fundraising websites compared

We first posted this blog in 2010 - ever since it has been one of our most popular posts and with online fundraising growing in popularity all the time we thought it was due a 2012 refresh! So, how do the main UK charity fundraising websites compare?

This year online fundraising already makes up 30% of all charitable donations. Arguments against going online for fundraising are decreasing, but there are so many tools you can use it can be difficult to know which one is the best. So, we’ve put together a list of the most popular fundraising platforms and compared their popularity, price and social presence, to help you out.

First off, which is the most popular. The amount of traffic each website gets dictates how likely your fundraising campaign is going to be seen. Obviously, the greater the sites popularity the greater chance you have. Below is a table of the fundraising sites that get the most traffic, based on data from Alexa.com data.

Name UK traffic rank Sites linking in
JustGiving 379 22791
Virgin Money Giving 2005 4919
EveryClick 5383 1599
The Big Give 24922 682
B My Charity 32620 996
Global Giving UK 61038 293
Charity Giving 64939 738
MissionFish N/A 143
MyDonate N/A N/A
Sponsor-Me N/A N/A

*These fundraising tools are part of a larger company, so accurate data cannot be acquired.

Now, popularity isn’t everything. Fundraising platforms cost money to keep running. A few donations through a cheaper platform may end up more useful than a lot through a more expensive one. Here are a few types of charges you might encounter on these websites.

  • Set-up fee – A one-off payment before you get started. In our top ten there are only two sites that ask for this, Virgin Money Giving (£120) and Bmycharity (£150). For charities wishing to run a lot of campaigns these charges might not be too much of a problem, even for charities that run one huge campaign these charges might be outweighed by other factors.
  • Subscription – A recurring fee paid throughout your membership. In our top ten there is only one website that charges a subscription fee, and that is the most popular one, JustGiving. The £15 a month charge could be enough to put off those charities who run few campaigns, but for the prolific JustGiving’s popularity can make it worthwhile.
  • Commission – A fee calculated based on a percentage of the amount you raise. Usually this is between 2% and 5%. Of our ten chosen, only Bmycharity, Charity Giving and MyDonate don’t take a commission, whereas JustGiving takes 5%.
  • Card processing – All debit and credit cards transactions cost a small amount of money. This is usually 1.45% but can vary from card to card. All of the websites charge for this fee.
Name Commission Taken Overall Fees and VAT (per £1000 donations + Gift Aid) Additional charges
JustGiving 5% £79 £15 per month
Virgin Money Giving 2% £35 £120 sign-up fee
EveryClick 4-4.8% £59 None
The Big Give 4% £50 None
B My Charity None £16 £150 sign-up
Global Giving UK 10% £100 None
Charity Giving None £40 None
MissionFish ? £200 None
MyDonate None £15 None
Sponsor-Me 4% £50 None

Most of these websites also offer social media integration to varying degrees. Using social media to bolster your fundraising campaign can make the difference between success and failure. Twitter users are the most generous of the social media world with each donation from them averaging around £30 according to data from JustGiving. Fundraising platforms often tweet and retweet links to charities campaigns on their sites. So how well does each platform do on Twitter? We’ve compared how well each site has done to the last time we looked at charity fundraising platforms in 2010.

Name Twitter name Twitter followers Followers: following ratio (%) Follower change since 2010 (%)
JustGiving @JustGiving 47,440 1,856 + 898%
Virgin Money Giving @VMgiving 7,358 1,116 + 171%
EveryClick @Everyclick_news 1,675 180 + 44%
The Big Give @BigGive 4,738 142 + 184%
B My Charity @Bmycharity 2,642 305 + 193%
Global Giving UK @GlobalGivingUK 4,585 112 + 26%
Charity Giving @charitygivingUK 127 529 N/A
MissionFish @ebayforCharity 4,927 249 N/A
MyDonate N/A N/A N/A N/A
Sponsor-Me @Charities_Trust 354 174 N/A

Though Twitter often finds the most generous donors the majority of people are found through Facebook. Awareness of your campaign can be raised through people liking and sharing links to it. Surprisingly few of our top ten actually have dedicated Facebook pages. However, the ones that do also happen to be the most popular. JustGiving and Virgin Money Giving also have Facebook apps, which make donating and sharing even easier.

Name Facebook presence Facebook likes Percentage increase from 2010
JustGiving www.facebook.com/justgiving 38,555 N/A
Virgin Money Giving www.facebook.com/VirginMoneyGivingApp and www.facebook.com/virginmoneygiving 7,881 344%
EveryClick None N/A N/A
The Big Give www.facebook.com/theBigGive.org.uk 1,183 N/A
B My Charity www.facebook.com/Bmycharity 2,089 268%
Global Giving UK www.facebook.com/GlobalGivingUK 1069 128%
Charity Giving www.facebook.com/pages/CharityGiving/
172975279382062
445 N/A
MissionFish None N/A N/A
MyDonate None N/A N/A
Sponsor-Me None N/A N/A

One consideration that need to be taken into account which we couldn’t put into a table is personal preference. Each website offers a different experience, some which might appeal to you more than they do to others.

There are also some more unusual alternatives that don’t follow the traditional funding approach. Such as Guess2Give, a website that uses a mini-raffle system in which a small part of the funds raised is given as a prize to one of the donors. This encourages people to donate, however you’ll receive less of the donations raised.

There is no one website that can be singled out as the best; each has it’s own strengths and weaknesses. We’ve only compiled a basic overview of some of the most popular to give you a place to start looking. Do some more research to find out which one will be the best fit for your charity.

There are similar guides to be found at the Money Saving Expert and Third Sectorwebsites, for further information and comparisons.

For some other great resources, check out Fundraising.co.uk and Guardian Voluntary Sector. If you want some more help feel free to email us at hello@reasondigital.com. And if there is a fundraising website that you use and love that we’ve missed, then let us know about it in the comments section below.