How to Retain Donors When Switching Online Giving Platform

Posted on April 24, 2019

If your parish recently switched online giving platforms (or you’re considering it), retaining donors will be at the front of your mind. You don’t want to lose a single giver as you transition from the old platform to the new one. Even though donor retention is a concern for churches, they also know that a better online giving solution is essential for growth and more impactful in the long run.

The goal is to transition givers thoughtfully and thoroughly. By doing this, you not only retain donors, but you also inspire first-time gifts. Here are a few tips to follow, so your parish successfully transitions all your givers.

Inform your church early and often
When switching giving platforms, prepare your parish. Tell your parishioners and donors that you plan to switch and the date of the live launch. Also, let them know why you’ve made this decision whether it’s for a better user experience, to save administrators time, or other reasons. By creating a buzz and keeping everyone informed, current donors aren’t caught off guard, and those who haven’t given before are more inclined to do so.

Purposefully plan your live launch
Once the big day arrives to launch the new giving platform, announce it live in-service. Don’t just tell donors—show them the steps to set up a new giving account via text, mobile app, and on your website. Make sure those working at welcome stations are prepared to answer questions and help those that need assistance. Also, plan events like a meet-and-greet after service to encourage givers to use the new platform.

Of course, you won’t be completing the switch in one day. Most parishes take 6 weeks to 2 months to transition from one platform to another. This gives you time to engage with all your donors about the new way to give. While phasing out your old provider, take down their giving buttons and donation pages on your site, so only the new links are available.

Continually follow up with your donors
After the live launch, continue to follow up in-service every Sunday for at least 6 weeks. Also, send reminder emails and list the steps to donate in bulletins. Let people know on your website that you’ve switched online giving providers and guide them to tithe using the new platform.

Speak with engagement coaches
Speak with engagement coaches to help you through the transition. At ParishSOFT, our Giving Success Coaches are available for one-on-one calls and provide customizable email templates, slides, and more to help you inform your parish. These materials simplify the process for parish leaders and administrators, so you retain donors and inspire new gifts.

Know what to expect
When you know what to expect during each phase of the transition, your parish will be better prepared. Learn more about transitioning to a new platform by enrolling in our free Giving Success Program. Haven’t heard about the Giving Success Program and its many benefits for churches getting started with ParishSOFT Giving? Review our blog post on ParishSOFT’s Giving Success Program and when you are ready, call 866-930-4774 x6 to speak with a member of our Sales team.

We’re here to answer any questions you have about switching to ParishSOFT Giving. Simply call 866-930-4774 x6 or email parishsoftsales@parishsoft.com.

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