The landscape of fundraising is changing – and digital giving is more important than ever. As recent research by Enthuse has shown, more than half (51%) of the public now want to make their future donations online.
However, it’s easy to lose potential donors on the journey between charity awareness, registration, and giving money. If your website has limited functionality for fundraisers and you rely on external sites to set up fundraising events and pages, accept donations and gather related data, you can bet your supporters aren’t having the best user experience.
Why a custom microsite can give an edge to fundraising and events
If you are short of resources to design and build a website with a slick donation funnel and integrated CRM, a new breed of online fundraising platforms can help you create digital giving and event microsites in your own branding, and amongst these, Enthuse is one of the most pioneering in the UK.
They have helped over 4,000 British charities raise £100m between them in the last few years, and their white-label platform offers a custom-branded fundraising and events solution to manage multiple income streams and help charities take control of their data. Their recent launch, Enthuse+, extends their portfolio to offer custom-built microsites that put your charity’s own brand centre stage – whether you want to develop a dedicated microsite for your big annual campaign, set up ticketed events, or allow your supporters to create their own team or individual fundraising pages.
“We design and build microsites so they’re effectively an extension of the charity’s own site, which is best for user experience and brand recall – and for optimising donations,” says Mark Scobie, head of sales at Enthuse. “We use the charity’s assets and brand guidelines to ensure we match their brand exactly.”
What makes a good fundraising and event microsite?
We sat down with Mark Scobie to discuss the best-practice features and functionality that charities should look for when considering a fundraising and events microsite.
As well as optimising the user journey with a seamlessly branded website from registration to donation, the right platform should keep signup processes running smoothly. “We integrate all required technical features, such as registration forms, event ticketing and merchandise,” explains Scobie. “And supporters automatically create their fundraising page as part of event registration, so there is a 100% conversion rate and no drop off.”
More control of data
Setting up your own microsite to handle fundraising means your charity has more control over – and better access to – its data. “Because we integrate our registration software into the microsite, there is no third party,” says Scobie. “At the front end, you customise your registration fields, and then one set of supporter data, including Gift Aid collection, is stored in the back office and available for you to access for CRM and marketing purposes.”
Distinctive, bespoke content
Off-the-shelf event and campaign pages have historically had technical and branding limitations, notes Scobie – but that’s not the case with the latest breed of microsite. “We can add a variety of custom and gamification widgets to bring an event to life or host key content,” he says. “Custom fonts, video headers, totalisers, leaderboards, social feeds and live streaming all allow us to personalise fundraising pages to create a more dynamic user experience and better sense of community.
If revolutionising your digital fundraising sounds like a long process, it doesn’t have to be – Enthuse can create a bespoke microsite in as little as two to four weeks. “Our clients have been impressed with our quality of development, user experience, and the speed and efficiency of the build and launch – which is possible as we provide everything under one roof, from our UK base,” says Scobie. “The main feedback has been the huge benefits of having a ‘one-stop shop’, and how clients can use their data to grow their charity and community.”
Case study: the Cystic Fibrosis Trust’s charity event microsite
The Cystic Fibrosis Trust’s ‘Great Strides, My Way’ is an annual walking challenge across UK countryside. Like many fundraisers, it switched to a virtual event during the pandemic – and the charity wanted an event microsite to make the experience as engaging and widely accessible as possible.
Enthuse created an event microsite which incorporated details that hadn’t been possible with other platforms, such as an eyecatching looping video in the page header, and the functionality to order event t-shirts.
Using the Trust’s brand fonts and colour throughout and embedding Instagram also helped the microsite sit seamlessly within its existing online presence. A bespoke totaliser showed the amount raised, number of fundraisers involved and donations.
With a previous platform, the Trust found itself unable to fully access supporters’ contact details, so could not send personal thank you cards or encourage them to participate in future events. With Enthuse, they were able to customise opt-in data, enabling the charity to communicate with supporters directly.
“Enthuse has helped us to personalise our fundraising in a way that wasn’t possible before,” says Scarlett Sharpe, events manager at the Cystic Fibrosis Trust. “When you visit our event microsite our brand is clear, recognisable and shines through. It looks like an extension of our website rather than a new one.”
Get the whole story
Read the full case study on how the Cystic Fibrosis Trust created a highly engaging and accessible event microsite with Enthuse’s help.