A lapsed donor survey can consist simply of one question, with multiple choices for an answer.
Why did you stop giving? (Select all that apply)
I was not aware my donation had stopped
I can no longer afford to offer my support
There was a mistake at my bank
My personal priorities for giving have changed
I switched to support a different charity
I felt pressured into giving
[Org name] asked me for an amount I found inappropriate
I wasn’t thanked appropriately for my gift
The quality of service provided to me as a donor was poor
I didn’t enjoy [Orgname]’s communications
This is not a cause that greatly interests me
[Org name] did not tell me how my money was used
[Org name] wrote to me too often
Supporting [orgname] doesn’t fit with my sense of who I am
[Org name] doesn’t seem to need my support
Other: (write in an answer)
One word of caution: don’t let the survey recipient ever see the words “lapsed donor” – in other words, don’t address them as such. Words like “We miss you” or “Did we do something wrong?” can be good ways to preface the survey.
Steven Shattuck served as the chief Engagement Officer at Bloomerang for 10 years. A prolific writer and speaker, Steven contributed to “Fundraising Principles and Practice: Second Edition.” He also supports the Association of Fundraising Professional's Fundraising Effectiveness Project, serves as an AFP Center for Fundraising Innovation (CFI) committee member, and sits on the faculty of the Institute for Charitable Giving. He is the author of Robots Make Bad Fundraisers - How Nonprofits Can Maintain the Heart in the Digital Age, published by Bold and Bright Media (2020).
You can find Steven Shattuck on LinkedIn