Despite a decrease in the number of donors, overall giving to nonprofits increased for the seventh consecutive year according to a recently-published report.

“2018 continued the longest sustained period of charitable giving growth since the last recession,” Blackbaud’s 2018 Charitable Giving Report stated.

Overall charitable giving in 2018 saw an increase of 1.5 percent over 2017 levels, which analysts believe is a return to normal levels of expected year-to-year increase after spikes in the previous two years.

Online giving grew 1.2 percent in 2018 compared to 2017 — reaching a record high of approximately 8.5 percent of all fundraising revenue. And the report found that donations on mobile devices now comprise 24 percent of total online donations, up 3 percent from 2017.

While it’s a record high for online giving, these numbers show the overwhelming majority of fundraising still comes through traditional means, like direct mail.

Bucking the overall trend of year to year increases, small nonprofits actually saw a 2.3 percent decline in overall giving from 2017 to 2018 according to the report — but their online giving saw a modest increase of 0.7 percent over the same period.

Medium-sized nonprofit organizations ($1M – $10M) saw an increase of 2 percent in overall giving and 3.7 percent online, while large nonprofits (over $10M) saw 2.3 percent growth overall and a decrease in online giving of 0.5 percent.

The report contained interesting breakdowns of giving by nonprofit size and sector, by monthly distribution, international trends, and #GivingTuesday figures. Some key metrics from the report on U.S. donors include:

Average age of donor: 62

Median donation amount for gifts above $1,000: $2,049
Median donation amount for gifts below $1,000: $20  
Average online donation amount: $147 

First-year, offline-only donor retention rate for nonprofits: 29%
Multi-year, offline-only donor retention rate for nonprofits: 60%
First-year, online-only donor retention rate for nonprofits: 22%
Multi-year, online-only donor retention rate for nonprofits: 64% 

See the full report for further information.


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