Nonprofits saw positive year-over-year growth in 2008 in key areas of online success, such as online fundraising, e-mail file growth and Web site traffic. This is in contrast to reports that indicate traditional direct mail-led fundraising growth declined in 2008 overall, especially in the fourth quarter.
These were among the findings from a recent study sponsored by Convio, a provider of on-demand constituent relationship management software and services to nonprofit organizations.
Additional findings from the study include the following:
Web traffic to nonprofits continues to expand. Average monthly Web site traffic grew year over year at a rate of 20 percent.
E-mail file growth continues to be strong. E-mail file growth grew 28 percent from 2007 to 2008.
Increase in number of gifts drives online revenue. Fourteen percent growth in online revenue was fueled by a 14 percent increase in the number of gifts nonprofit organizations received in 2008.
Overall nonprofits experienced just 3 percent growth in online revenue in the fourth quarter of 2008. This growth, compared to the 18 percent growth for the whole year, indicates that the economy did have a heavy negative impact on online fundraising during that period. Large organizations bucked the trend by experiencing growth that was 11 times the industry average.
This year’s study analyzed data compiled from 597 nonprofit organizations, representing millions of online interactions and transactions from Convio’s software-as-a-service system. The study aggregated results into benchmarks that nonprofit organizations can compare against their peer groups and the industry as a whole. In addition, the study provides separate benchmarks for 14 nonprofit industry subgroups or verticals across 21 key metrics.