Wednesday, March 15, 2017 - 08:33
Written by

Before I started working as a CiviCRM consultant, I was a CiviCRM user at a small nonprofit. We got a large chunk of our revenue through grassroots donations, but we never had an opportunity to see how we compared to other organizations like ours.

(TL;DR – you should install the Individual Donor Benchmark Survey extension, run the report, and submit your survey response.)

Nowadays, some proprietary donor databases collect users’ data and publish reports, but besides being creepy, they can’t get good data without involving organizations directly. They also only cover users of a single software system.

Besides, how do you know the data covers organizations like yours?

The Individual Donor Benchmark Survey was developed by Third Space Studio to address these problems by producing a voluntary survey of nonprofit organizations in the United States with revenues under $2 million. The survey covers fundraising totals, offline vs. online giving, one-time and recurring gifts, and the organizations’ resources devoted to fundraising. (You can download last year’s report here.)

It is a lot of data, but we’ve got a tool to help.

AGH Strategies, a sponsor of the survey, has produced a CiviCRM extension that crunches the numbers for you, giving you all the survey answers that CiviCRM can provide. You only need to answer one question: which financial types count as donations as opposed to other revenue (such as grants or service fees).

When you complete the survey, you’ll be on the list to receive the report for this year, but that’s not all: you’ll be contributing to a resource for all small nonprofits to use, and you’ll help make sure CiviCRM is well-represented in the results.

Run the Individual Donor Benchmark Survey extension today to join in the effort!