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What Your Nonprofit Should Do Now That The AmazonSmile Program Is Closing

This guide offers tips and a checklist for writing an effective annual appeal letter and launching a productive fundraising campaign.
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Since 2013, the AmazonSmile program has provided shoppers with an easy way to donate to nonprofits like yours. When Amazon customers purchased a qualifying item, the AmazonSmile Foundation donated 0.5% of the purchase price at no additional cost to the customer. 

Recently, Amazon announced that it plans to end the AmazonSmile Program, with February 20 of this year being marked as the estimated closure date. 

If you work for a nonprofit that received funds from the AmazonSmile program and you’re worried about how this affects your digital fundraising efforts, you’re not alone. Many fundraisers are wondering about what this announcement means for the future in terms of the ability to receive support from Amazon customers.

In this post, you’ll find more information about AmazonSmile’s closure and what you should do now to make up for the loss of the funds you received through the program.

Information About AmazonSmile’s Closure

Why Is Amazon ending the AmazonSmile program?

According to Amazon, the program has not grown enough to create the impact that the company initially intended. 

When will the AmazonSmile program end?

Amazon plans to end the AmazonSmile program on February 20, 2023.

This is a big change for my nonprofit. What is Amazon doing to ease this transition?

In the announcement email, Amazon committed to making a one-time donation to each nonprofit registered in the AmazonSmile program. Your organization should receive a donation equal to three months’ worth of donations your nonprofit received through AmazonSmile in 2022. 

Additionally, your nonprofit will receive all donations made through the AmazonSmile program’s closure until February 20. 

Does this mean my nonprofit can no longer raise money through Amazon?

Opportunities still exist to receive support through Amazon. For example, you can create an Amazon Wishlist and ask Amazon customers to support you by purchasing one of the items on your list.

Is this a sign that my nonprofit should focus less on digital fundraising?

Not at all! The closure of the program is simply a sign that your organization needs to diversify its fundraising strategies. 

Use this opportunity to try out other online fundraising ideas like hosting crowdfunding or peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns. Exploring your options and getting creative with the resources the internet provides should help open new doors and attract new donors. 

What should my nonprofit do now?

First, calculate how much of your organization’s revenue came from the AmazonSmile program. This will inform the strategy you use to account for no longer receiving these funds. 

Next, communicate with your donors. If your donors aren’t aware of the situation, they won’t know that their help is needed. That’s why you need to let your donors know that the program is closing and ask for their support now and in the future. 

Post an announcement on your website and on social media and include the information in upcoming newsletters. Make sure you provide them with other ways to donate.

While you’re restructuring to adjust to the loss of one income source, it’s a great idea to create backup plans for other sources as well. This way, you can protect your organization from financial issues that might occur in the future. For example, if you use Facebook fundraisers, think about how your revenue would be impacted if you lose that donation source. 

Finally, remember that even though the program is ending, your donors are still out there. Take stock of where you’re at now and make a plan to move your mission forward in the future.

How to Write a Fundraising Plan in 2 Steps!

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