Donor management software doesn’t come cheap. It actually costs an arm and a leg, and all that money you can’t afford to spend because you’re running a nonprofit organization. But the willingness to pay the price also reflects your own level of engagement.
Most things in life are free, and that rings true for fundraising software, as well. Of course, the free-of-charge price tag could mean poor quality, risks, and glitches.
It’s important to be selective in your choice of the best free donor management software, especially since the right one can make a big difference in your ability to raise funds.
So what will your lack of investment translate to in terms of organizational health?
For one, you could save a lot on budget. No investments will be funneled into donor management software. This means money can be put to better use, like achieving your campaign’s goals, or reaching the mission.
What does the software market have to say about the donor management category? Will you find enough free and open source options to choose from?
Finding The Best Donor Management Software For Your Nonprofit
Free Donor Management Software
Donor Manager is primarily designed as a church-specific donation management software for missionaries.
The software defines itself as an ideal matchmaker between staff members who raise their own financial support and the donors or partner who make the contribution.
Some of its features include:
- Donation databases – an up-to-date mailing list with donors’ names, phone numbers, emails, website, etc.
- Excel integration capabilities – exporting data to Excel, dBase, and delimited files.
- Mail-merging – sending bulk e-mail messages to donors and partners.
- Pledge tracking – tracking pledges and contributions.
- Donor Profile analyzer – printing style reports about partners, your relationship to them, and their level of support to your campaign. Excuse us, we meant to say your ‘ministry’.
As long as you don’t mind the Christian parlance and your fundraising campaign to be referred to as your ‘ministry’, you can also use this donor management software. No money or faith strings attached.
CiviCRM is one of the few donor management software options specifically designed for nonprofits, NGOs, and advocacy groups.
This software mainly acts as a campaign database, managing information about donors, members, subscribers, volunteers, voters, and everyone involved in the process. But there’s more than meets the eye.
CiviCRM is especially strong on event registration and content creation management. CiviContribute handles payments for events, memberships, and donations.
The software is deployed in conjunction with Drupal, Joomla, and WordPress, offering one of a kind integration capabilities. If you want to access your donor database using other computers but your own, this feature grants you that access without having to download any additional software.
CiviCRM has a high-class clientele of NGOs, including Wikimedia Foundation, Amnesty International, and Creative Commons.
CiviCRM is free for you to download, use and extend. If you want for the Core Team to maintain, support and improve the software, you have to pay a subscription of $10/ month.
Ebase is certainly not the beauty queen of donor management software tools. However, what Ebase lacks for in aesthetic design, it covers in functionality.
Its badge of honor – created by nonprofits, for nonprofits. You can use Ebase to manage your contact and event information and outreach campaigns.
The donor databases are compatible with MS Word and Excel. This open source fundraising software is deployed in conjunction with FileMaker Pro on both Mac and Windows which translated to source code customization.
ProcessDonation is a relatively new online donor and fundraising management tool backed by a veteran software development firm.
This software takes us into price-charted waters. Although it does offer free and paid plans for nonprofits, there’s a catch.
The free alternative, which ProcessDonation advertises as the ‘best fit for smaller nonprofit organizations’, limits the user to one campaign/ event at a time and access to only one administrator.
The premium comes at a cost of $19,99/month, offering features such as unlimited campaigns and event pages, insights dashboard, social media campaigning, a mobile app, and custom emails to donors.
For extra & extra features, this software also offers the pinnacle of donor management capabilities in its Ultimate package. $39,99/month will buy you all the standard features, plus advanced reporting, year-end donation letters, donor and gift management.
They even have a team of fundraising coaches waiting on standby just for you, their ultimate client.
Donor Management Software Worth Paying For
We’ve said it before, we’re saying it again. You’re a nonprofit, which means you keep your budget on a short leash. And that’s Ok, because these donor management software options won’t stretch your dollars excessively.
BatchBook has all that it takes to become a standard in your management toolbox. It touts itself as a small business CRM software (customer relationship management), which means it’s designed to help fundraisers:
- Organize donor data and interaction seamlessly.
- Build a complete profile of each donor.
- Automate recurring little tasks like sending emails.
- Help team members streamline their work with to-do lists and reminders.
- Store your contacts in the cloud.
BatchBook offers a free 30 days trial. Two packages are available at not wildly different costs. The Essential option for $19,95/ month is the standard, but if you aim for automatization of your campaign expect to pay for the premium – $35/ month for an unlimited number of users.
If your nonprofit handles huge swaths of donor information, Bloomerang may be a feasible option for you.
After all, their core purpose does highlight donor retention, which might explain why your donor retention rates center on the dashboard so you’re constantly updated to your organization’s progress.
Created in 2012, Bloomerang enables users to view donor records. It also tracks the best time to contact each donor and measures their level of engagement by such degrees as ‘cold’, ‘warm’, ‘hot’, and ‘on fire’!
You are definitely rooting for the latter. For the price their charging – simple and straightforward, as they call it, you should expect kickass management software.
The cheapest package comes at $99/ month, while the middle one is for 5,001 to 15,000 records and will cost your organization $299/ month for free email and online support and an unlimited number of users.
For up to 40,000 records, expect to pay a whopping $499 per month.
To streamline your nonprofits’ workflow, organize your partner contacts and measure donor retention, you need more than a piece of software. You need a solution.
Donor management software will add its small but powerful contribution to making your cause a reality. Just make sure you choose the one that works best for with your organization’s size and objective.