[INFOGRAPHIC] 2017 Fundraising Effectiveness Project Survey Report

The Fundraising Effectiveness Project (FEP) has released the findings from their latest survey, and the infographic below summarizes some of the key findings of the report.

Report Highlights

The 2017 Fundraising Effectiveness Project report summarizes data from 10,829 non-profit organizations covering year to year fundraising results for 2015-2016.

The 2017 Fundraising Effectiveness Project report summarizes data provided by four donor software firms: Bloomerang, DonorPerfect, eTapestry and Neon. These four firms provided anonymized gift transactions for all of the non-profits using their software. This data was then cleansed to remove abnormalities, for example any organization with less than 25 donors, or organizations that did not have any donors in 2015 or 2016. The resultant data set contained 10,829 non-profit organizations.

The report shows that:

  • Gains of $4.893 billion in gifts were generated from new, upgraded current and previously lapsed donors were offset by losses of $4.625 billion through reduced gifts and lapsed donors. This means that, while there was a positive $267 million net gain-in-giving, every $100 gained in 2016 was offset by $95 in losses through gift attrition.
  • Gains of 4.882 million in new and previously lapsed donors were offset by losses of 4.832 million in lapsed donors. This means that there was a growth of 49,421-donors, and every 100 donors gained in 2016 was offset by 99 lost donors through attrition.
  • The largest growth in gift dollars/donors came from new gifts/donors, and the pattern was most pronounced in the organizations with the highest growth-in-giving ratios.
  • The greatest losses in gift dollars came from lapsed new gifts, particularly in the organizations with the highest growth-in-giving ratios. The greatest losses in donors came from lapsed new donors in all growth-in-giving categories.
  • The average donor retention rate in 2016 was 45 percent; -0.5% change from 2015’s rate. That is, only 45 percent of 2015 donors made repeat gifts to participating nonprofits in 2016.
  • The gift or dollar retention rate was 48 percent, no change from in 2015. That is, only 48 percent of 2015 dollars raised were raised again by participating nonprofits in 2016.
  • Over the last 10 years, donor and gift or dollar retention rates have consistently been weak — averaging below 50 percent.

You can view the full 2017 FEP Survey Report here >>

For a more in-depth analysis of the 2016 data, check out the 2016 Fundraising Effectiveness Donor Retention Supplement. A supplement of the 2017 data is forthcoming.

About the Fundraising Effectiveness Project

In 2006 the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) and the Center on Nonprofits and Philanthropy at the Urban Institute established the Fundraising Effectiveness Project to conduct research on fundraising effectiveness and help nonprofit organizations increase their fundraising results at a faster pace.

The project goal is to help nonprofit organizations measure, compare, and maximize their annual growth in giving.

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Steven Shattuck

Steven Shattuck

Chief Engagement Officer at Bloomerang
Steven Shattuck is Chief Engagement Officer at Bloomerang and Executive Director of Launch Cause. A prolific writer and speaker, Steven is a contributor to "Fundraising Principles and Practice: Second Edition" and volunteers his time on the Project Work Group of the Fundraising Effectiveness Project and is an AFP Center for Fundraising Innovation (CFI) committee member.
Steven Shattuck
By | 2017-11-30T14:54:10+00:00 April 28th, 2017|Donor Retention, Research|

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