The proportion of people who say they have used their mobile phone to send a text donation to charity in the past month rose from 3 per cent in July 2010 to 15 per cent in March 2011, according to new research by the consultancy nfpSynergy.
The latest version of its Sending out an SMS report, which included a survey of 1,000 representative UK people over the age of 16, found Red Nose Day was the major reason for this increase, with 82 per cent of people who gave saying it was to this campaign.
Younger age groups were found to be most likely to give through their mobile, with 19 per cent of 16 to 24-years-olds saying they had used the method to make a charitable donation in the past month, compared with 8 per cent of 45-55 year olds.
When respondents were asked how likely it would be for them to give to charity via text, 55 per cent of respondents said it was very unlikely, and 8 per cent said it was very likely. In July 2010, 62 per cent said it was very unlikely and 3 per cent said it was very likely.
Joe Saxton, co-founder of nfpSynergy, said it estimated that, by 2014, text donations could be generating around £100m per year for UK charities.
"However, a culture of uncertainty among the charity sector remains the biggest and most important barrier for the future development of its application of mobile technology to supporter engagement," he said.
"Our research shows that charities can see the ever-increasing potential – among a seemingly ever-increasingly eager public – but they aren't yet reaping the rewards or finding success in utilising this new tool."