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Here’s Why Bloomerang Customers Have A Higher First-Time Donor Retention Rate Compared To The Industry Average

First-Time Donor Retention Rate
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As a fundraising professional, you know that it costs more money to acquire donors than to retain your existing donors

You also likely know that it’s especially important to retain your first-time donors because the people who make that second or “golden” donation are more likely to continue supporting your mission in the future

In this post, we’re going to talk about donor retention rates for the nonprofit industry as a whole and the average first-time donor retention rate for Bloomerang customers. 

Keep reading to find out more and to see how Bloomerang helps nonprofits like yours build deeper relationships with supporters and secure sustainable revenue for years to come. 

Calculating your nonprofit’s first-time donor retention rate

Before we dive in, we recommend that you calculate your nonprofit’s year-over-year first-time donor retention rate

In order to help you do this, we’ve created a Donor Retention Calculator. Here’s how to find your donor retention rate: 

  1. Go to the Donor Retention Calculator
  2. Scroll down to the second prompt (Let’s talk about your donor retention rate).
  3. Look for the green text (Don’t know yours? Calculate your donor retention rate).
  4. Find the arrow next to it; the arrow will be pointing up. 
  5. Click the arrow and it will point down, revealing a green box with form fields.
  6. Enter your donor information in the fields.
  7. Look for the number that automatically appears at the end of the sentence that says “Your donor retention rate is.” That’s your donor retention rate!

Tip: We recommend setting aside time to look at donor retention by programs or campaigns. For example, if you have a monthly giving program, how many donors who joined the program in 2021 continued participating in the program in 2022? The more data you have on hand, the better! 

Bloomerang nonprofit customers retain donors at a higher rate than the industry average. How does your nonprofit compare?

According to research from the Fundraising Effectiveness Project, as of 2022:

  • The industry average first-time donor retention rate was 18.6%.
    • This is a decrease from the 2020 and the 2019 retention rates. 

Here’s a look at how Bloomerang nonprofit customers retained first-time donors:

  • The average first-time donor retention rate was 22.2%.
    • This is a 3.6 point increase over the industry average. 
  • When looking at the top 20% of their first-time donors, the average retention rate was 29.4%. 
    • This is a 10.8 point increase over the industry average.  

How does your nonprofit’s retention rate compare? Is it higher or lower than the industry average? Has that rate increased or decreased over the last few years? 

What about the top 20% of your first-time donors? What percentage of those donors did you retain and is that an increase or decrease over the previous years? 

How does Bloomerang help nonprofits increase their first-time donor retention rate?

If your first-time donor retention rate falls below the industry average or you’ve seen a decrease in that rate over the years, don’t despair—there are plenty of ways to increase the number of first-time donors you retain. 

Here are just a few examples of best practices and how Bloomerang helps you follow those:

  • Acknowledge the donation immediately. Donors want to know that their gift was successfully processed as soon as possible. One way of reassuring them is to send an automated acknowledgement email with a donation receipt.  
    • How Bloomerang helps: With Bloomerang, you can set up an automated email with just a few clicks. You can also personalize those messages to give the donor more information about your nonprofit or to share more about the impact their donation will have on your mission. 
  • Thank donors. One way to win a donor’s continued support is to show them how much you appreciate them. In addition to thanking them in your acknowledgement email, you should reach out and thank them in a more personal way. 
    • How Bloomerang helps: You’ll receive a notification when someone makes a donation for the first time. Because you have this data on hand, you can easily add them to a segment just for first-time donors and engage them in a meaningful, personalized way. You’ll also receive reminders to call first-time donors.   
  • Keep donors informed about their impact and your work. Donors gave once. That’s great! But how do you get them to give again? You show them what their support has helped your nonprofit accomplish and how an additional donation will help you in the future. 
    • How Bloomerang helps: With Bloomerang, you can create and schedule a series of emails that will educate donors about your mission and inspire them to give again.  

In conclusion

Bloomerang’s features and tools can help you increase your donor retention rate. Fill out this short form to request a Demo and a member of our team will be in touch shortly to show you how. 

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