Making the most of mobile – What 2016 has in store for charities

A website development agency

We hear the stats all the time; ‘mobile donors are 5 times more likely to abandon their donation if a website isn’t mobile optimised’ and thankfully the third sector is slowly getting to grips with this reality. If you look at the results from 2015’s Giving Tuesday (as published by Blackbaud), donations from mobiles and tablets peaked at 42% of the total during the late evening, with 17% of all gifts coming through this route. Mobile simply cannot be ignored.

So, for those charities out there who are not only aware of mobile’s impact, but are capitalising on it, here are some things to consider for 2016:

Search engine results

Searching on mobile is increasingly going to be a separate affair, with results slowly shifting away from text or image ads to include apps, social media updates and even videos. Google is a little tentative about pressing go on video adverts at the moment, but with the amount of time, money and effort they’ve expended testing organic reach, we can only assume it’s around the corner. Video is a great way of closing that gap between consideration and conversion, and helps to bring offline and online together, especially in the non-profit sector.

With the small screen now taking over as the key area of focus for potential supporters, charities will be able to capitalise on cheaper routes to better engaged audiences through video on mobile.

Super-fast mobile donations

2016 will almost certainly see the rise of the one touch charitable gift. Recent predictions by Deloitte suggest that ‘touch commerce’ will reach 50 million users this year, which is an increase of 150%. Understandably, a payment process that allows a supporter to give securely online without registering or logging in holds great appeal to the charity fundraiser. Not only does it reduce the drop off rates during processing, but by enabling supporters to donate with as little as a fingerprint, they can give instinctively, responding to their emotions.

Alongside innovative smart posters and other advancements powered by Near Field Communication technologies (think Apple Pay), the sector is looking at a brand new way or encouraging and collecting single, or recurring, donations. Contactless collection tins, like those to be introduced by Cancer Research UK, are particularly exciting. Soon enough you may even be able to buy your Big Issue with your mobile phone.

Donations as part of your every day

Similarly to NFC, mobile apps that turn charitable giving into part of your everyday life are not a new phenomenon, but we’ve always credited them as intriguing propositions. As technology improves, the impact of these sorts of apps will inevitably increase.

Charity Miles, for example is a fantastic app. It encourages you to get exercising by paying out to one of 30 top charities for every mile you run, walk or cycle. This not only creates regular small donations to build up, but also helps develop a relationship between a supporter and a charity.

In much the same way, we’re likely to see a resurgence of click-to-donate charity sites through mobile. If you’ve forgotten, these sites allowed users to click an advertising link on a site, and the ad revenue from the click would go straight to charity.

Due to ad blocking, and other restrictions, this is unlikely to feature on desktop too much but could easily take the mobile world by storm.

Either way, giving without actually parting with money definitely has a place in UK fundraising, charities just need to find ways making that process as smooth and uncomplicated as possible.