Social media is the channel that most inspires donors in Europe to give, although ongoing email communication is most likely to encourage them to give again, according to the latest findings from the 2020 Global Trends in Giving Report.
The Global Trends report is a biennial study from into how donors worldwide prefer to give and engage with charities and good causes.
Produced by Nonprofit Tech for Good, the 2020 report is sponsored by Funraise and is based on surveys of almost 14,000 donors in 119 countries. It provides giving benchmarks for Europe, as well as Africa, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, Canada, the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean, along with a global average of the benchmark data.
In Europe, over 2,400 donors were surveyed across 35 countries. Two thirds of respondents were female and almost half were based in Italy, with particularly high response rates from Romania, North Macedonia, France, and Ireland.
Most popular causes
The most popular causes across Europe are children & youth, health & wellness, hunger & homelessness, and international development & relief. 43% of respondents are enrolled on a recurring giving programme, with the vast majority of these (77%) giving monthly.
Ways of donating
Giving online with a debit or credit card remains the most popular way of donating in Europe, with 43% of people preferring this method, although this has dropped marginally since the last report. One fifth of donors give by bank/wire transfer, with around one in ten giving by PayPal and a further 10% by cash. And, although the percentage donating via text remain low, this figure rose from 2018 to 2019, while fewer gave by mail.
Most likely to inspire donations
Just over a third of European donors say social media most inspires them to give – well above the global average of 25%. This is followed by websites and email. Of those inspired to give by social media, the majority (55%) say Facebook has the most impact, followed by Instagram and Twitter. 44% have donated through Facebook Fundraising Tools – up from 16% in 2018, and of these, around 9 in 10 say they are likely to do so again. So far only 12% donate through Instagram’s more recently launched fundraising tools but of these, 9 in 10 also say they are likely to give this way again.
In terms of repeat donations, regular email communication is most likely to encourage donors in Europe to give again, inspiring 44%, followed by social media (32%), and print (10%).
The survey also found that:
– 68% give by shopping at online stores that benefit NPOs (not for profit organisations): the highest rate in the world and 12% above the global average of 56%.
– 60% said they had donated to a charity in response to Covid-19: equal to the global average
– 57% donate to crowdfunding campaigns that benefit not-for-profit organisations – compared to 45% globally
– 30% donate to NPOs outside their country of residence, again equal to the global figure
However, donors in Europe are less likely to give through online auctions, online raffles or sweepstakes, and gaming, compared to the global average.
How do donors feel about charities?
Nonprofit Tech for Good also surveyed people on their feelings towards charities. In Europe, it found that overall, people view charities very positively, with well over 90% of donors saying that NPOs are essential for creating social change, and are also ethical and can be trusted. The vast majority say too that NPOs effectively express gratitude for their donations, and that NPOs effectively keep them updated on their programmes. 94% of donors however say that NPOs must invest financial resources in digital communications in order to stay relevant.
The global picture
Overall, the most popular causes are hunger and homelessness, children and youth, health and wellness, animals and wildlife, and faith and spirituality. The majority of donors are female, with Baby Boomers accounting for the biggest proportion overall, followed by Millennials and Generation X. Just over half are regular givers, with giving online with a credit or debit card the most popular way of giving. 30% donate to NGOs and nonprofits outside of their country, 60% have given in response to Covid-19, and 17% donated on Giving Tuesday.