2008 eNonprofit Benchmarks Study
Report written by Sarah DiJulio, Karen Matheson, Jessica Bosanko, Marie Ewald, and Benjamin Simon of M+R Services (M+R) and Holly Ross, Executive Director of the Nonprofit Technology Network (NTEN). Covers two years of data since original report in 2006, reflecting changes in the online space since that time, including huge growth in social networks like Facebook and MySpace.
Report downloadable at http://www.e-benchmarksstudy.com/index.html
Selected Key Findings (based on study of 21 major, U. S. based nonprofit organizations, such as Amnesty International, CARE USA, Habitat for Humanity, etc.)
Total amount raised online increased by 19 percent from 2006 to 2007
Forty percent of money raised came in the fourth quarter
Gifts of $1,000 and up made up just one percent of the overall online donations in 2007, but made up 20 percent of the amount raised online
On average, email open rates were 17.6 percent in 2007, down from 21.3 percent, and click-through rates were 3.8 percent, down from 4.9 percent
Advocacy email messages had a click-through rate of 8.8% and a response rate of 7.5%, while fundraising requests had a click-through rate of 1.1 percent and a response rate of just 0.13 percent. E-news had a click through rate of 3.6 percent.
Organizations on average sent just over 4 emails per subscriber per month
Average churn rate (rate at which an Email list goes bad in a year) was 19 percent in 2007, down from 21 percent in 2006
Organizations with successful online fundraising campaigns never sent an email appeal that was not tied to a broader campaign messaging stream, and fundraising appeals were never the first message in the campaign. Furthermore, appeals were tied to real-world events if possible.
Organizations with successful online fundraising campaigns also tended to recruit new advocates to high profile advocacy campaigns, and then converted to donors by sending fundraising appeals on the same issues.