Using Fundraising Devices in a Cost of Living Crisis

Using Fundraising Devices during a Cost of Living Crisis

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For charities an economy in recession is usually bad news.

Trends show donations typically fall – and this coupled with Cost of Living and Energy crises is ringing alarm bells across the whole Third Sector.

It’s not difficult to see why generating income & financial stability are among the top challenges for charity leaders right now, when they expect extra demand on services, as well as higher running costs due to rising utilities costs, and managing wage increases.

Public polling by CAF shows 6 in 10 people were planning to cut back on discretionary spending in 2022.

Which begs the question, how will this translate into donor behaviours in the coming year, as disposable income is squeezed and people manage an expected drop in living standards?

The Charity Commission highlights that communicating how donations are being spent will be key to holding onto the trust of supporters, and think tanks like NPC suggest reviewing expenditure, service delivery collaborations and prioritising fundraising activities that have the biggest impact.

So when it comes to fundraising devices, how can charities tackle these challenges, to help narrow the inevitable Funding Gap?

Digital Fundraising and the Cost of Living Crisis: optimising your approach

There are a few immediate steps to ensuring you’re getting the most from any digital fundraising devices and channels such as contactless fundraising.

Check how much you’re asking for

Take a look at your average donation amount – there is growing evidence that using a contactless device like the Donation Station will deliver more than a typical cash donation.

Are your devices asking for a single amount?

Could you add more donation options to allow people to give more?

Are you explaining the impact of donations?

If donor numbers drop in the coming months, when someone has made the decision to give, are you making it obvious how much you need to meet your service users needs?

Impact driven messaging is important to asking for donations.

Connect up your communications with data

Are there any trends you can identify in your donation reports, that show how donor behaviours might be changing on both devices and online giving platforms?

  • Are they giving on weekdays or weekends?
  • Are regular donations dropping in frequency?
  • Target your marketing spend to encourage giving when you know people will be more engaged with giving?
  • Can you introduce Flexible Giving?
  • Target and help supporters, that might need a break from giving, by offering the chance to reduce their donation amount and avoid cancelling donations completely?
  • Can you encourage more marketing signups of new supporters?
  • Offer a chance to find out about your charity via your donation device.
  • Build future regular giving, even if it’s not possible right now.

Ask for Gift Aid

Always include Gift Aid, which increases the value of donations by 25%

Add the question to your donation devices if you can.

If you’re worried about extending the donation journey through your device, it’s worth testing the experience & see how income differs. And then study the data.

Donation Stations can offer different journeys on the same device – or if you’ve got multiple devices, consider adding a longer journey with Gift Aid on one device, and another quick donation journey on another.

Tell everyone about it! Explain what Gift Aid is to your supporters. Brief your teams so they know it’s value to your fundraising overall, and how they can explain it to donors.

Choose places where it’s guaranteed to be seen

Add messaging to any branding (and make it about impact again), change the screen messages, making some permanent or temporary posters or displays at entrances & next to your device.

Find out more

Read more about Donation Station.

Book a demo

Ask us for a demo of our Donation Station, or tell us what you want to achieve with your fundraising. We love to talk Gift Aid!

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Skinny Donation Station in use at Riverbourne Farm

Who are GWD?

We help socially-minded organisations transition to digital systems, building stronger relationships through impactful products and services.

Our experience goes back two decades, with a foundation building and providing critical digital services and products for the financial services and retail industries.

With a long-proven ability to handle challenging projects and a team of trusted experts, we work hard to solve problems and deliver change that helps others.

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Attract Loop

Part of the Donation Station’s key visual design features, the Attract Loop are screensavers purposefully designed to run on a loop. Created by GWD with your input, they use visuals or photography, plus an emotive call to action, to catch the donors interest and lead them towards donation through interactive storytelling.


The entire Donation Station is open to branding, from external display to on-screen logos, photography and your brand look and feel.

Our design support service can adapt visuals and graphics to suit your brand.

Wifi or 4G/5G Data SIM

Where you need it, the Donation Station can be supplied with Data or Wifi connectivity.

If using the device in a remote location or at an event, it’s worth considering the signal strength available – GWD can support you to ensure there’s a smooth running operation on the day.

Safe & Secure

All data is transmitted with full encryption, so you can be sure that all individual donor data is safely used, in accordance with GDPR regulations.

Choice of Donations

Giving choice on where the donor wants their money to be spent empowers them further. The Donation Station asks this question and gives charities freedom to present their causes and activities as separate campaigns.

Gift Aid Up Sell

An integrated Gift Aid function on all Donation Stations helps boost fundraising a further 25%. This tax relief can be claimed from HRMC from any donor that supplies their contact details and makes a declaration, as a UK tax payer. The Donation Station is designed to encourage and secure this additional fundraising income easily, through simple reports that can be downloaded and submitted to HMRC as part of a Gift Aid claim.