Fundraising Blog

How to Choose the Right Online Fundraiser

Dee Brannick
Fundraising specialist, Co-Founder of GalaBid

There are lots of online fundraising options for people to choose from. How do you know whether a silent auction, digital raffle or donation drive is the right fundraiser for your cause?

Let’s take a look at the options available:

Silent Auction

What is it?

An online silent auction is where people bid for prize items. Online platforms (like GalaBid) provide a digital catalogue that displays the items, any minimum bid requirements and bidding activity. Auction participants can make a bid on the items up until the auction closes. The highest bidder wins!

Why You Should Run One

Online silent auctions feel like an event. They give focus to your fundraising and there’s lots to talk about when promoting the fundraiser itself (all those great prizes!).  

Having an impressive range of items will attract interest from people from outside your standard supporter base, which increases bidding competition.  In turn, competition for the prizes delivers an exciting opportunity to raise plenty of money for your cause.

There’s no space restrictions in your digital catalogue so you can display as many items (from boats to postage stamps) as you like online.  

Things to Think About

Creating an enticing prize pool is key to a successful online silent auction.  While you don’t need heaps of prizes (in fact, a single knock-out prize can often be all you need) the items do need to be attractive enough to generate plenty of bidding competition.

Think about where you might source your prizes from and how much time you have available to approach people and businesses for donations.  

Showcasing your items online means using quality high-res images that will attract attention.  Can your item donors provide you with a great image or can you work some photo magic using your smartphone?

Make sure you have an efficient item distribution process. Can you safely and easily get prizes to the winners without it taking too much time or money?

Online Raffle

What is it?

Much like an old-fashioned paper ticket competition, digital raffles issue tickets and draw winners! Unlike old-fashioned raffles, the digital version does everything online.

Why You Should Run One

Digital raffles are incredibly easy to run. If you’re using a fundraising platform like GalaBid , the process is almost 100% automated.

All participants need is the ticket purchase link and they’re ready to go.

Digital raffles offer plenty of flexible set-up options. You can have one or more winners, run the purchase period for as long or as short as you like, and you can even avoid sourcing any prize items by making the raffle prize a percentage of the cash raised, e.g., 5%.

Things to Think About

Like the silent auction great prizes will help boost ticket sales. An online raffle may not have the digital catalog to showcase items so you may need to get creative about circulating prize images via social media or email.

If you do opt for a cash prize that represents a percentage of the funds raised, obviously bear in mind that this limits the amount going to your cause.

Donation Drive

What is it?

The simplest form of fundraising. A digital donation drive looks for cash donations to support a specific cause.

Why You Should Run One

For time poor fundraisers donation drives are the easiest online fundraiser.  You just need to set-up your fundraising page and circulate the donation link to as many people as possible.

Things to Think About

While donation drives don’t usually have any prizes attached, some fundraisers like to reward the highest donor in some way. This doesn’t have to be a physical prize, a big thank-you is often enough to make extra-generous supporters feel really special.

Donation drives can work really well if they are attached to a specific project or target. For example, raising $5K for new laptops at your local school.  Fundraisers can post regular updates on how the campaign is progressing against target – it’s a great way to encourage final donations in order to reach the fundraising goal.

Want to know more about available fundraising options? Check out our helpful blog.

Ready to get started on your fundraising campaign? Let’s go!

About GalaBid

Ideal for donations. Perfect for Raffles. Awesome for Live and Silent Auctions! GalaBid’s online fundraising platform is designed for fundraisers of all types and sizes. For over 10 years we’ve been helping non-profits, charities, community clubs, churches, schools, and individuals to raise more and make a difference.

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