by Marketing Department September 20, 2017


Last Updated: February 26, 2021

In order to manage a successful nonprofit organization, it is important to maintain a strict financial budget. Since funds are usually limited, being thrifty with your donations is essential.

However, many nonprofits don’t realize the amount of contributions they waste on high credit card processing fees.

Accepting online donations for nonprofits is a great way to support your cause, but it doesn’t have to be expensive.

Reducing your credit card processing fees is one way to help maximize donations for your organization.

Here are 5 considerations to help you get the best credit card processing for nonprofits.

1. Cost

When accepting online donations for nonprofits, it’s important to find an affordable payment professor for your organization.

If you want to maximize your donations, make sure to ask for Level 3 pricing. Whenever a business donates to you using a business-type credit card or GSA card, Level 3 pricing will automatically reduce your costs for these expensive types of cards.

Level 3 pricing passes more information through the point of sale, which helps qualify your credit cards at the lowest possible interchange rates.

Your payment processor should also take line-item data and invoice information already stored in your accounting system and automatically send it to a PCI compliant payment gateway. This eliminates extra work on your behalf and secures reduced processing costs for your organization.

2. Security

Make sure to utilize a PCI compliant payment gateway that uses data encryption and tokenization technology to protect your contributions.

Tokenization replaces credit card information with a unique token, and the originals credit card data is no longer used for future transactions. Tokenization makes it impossible to hack or decipher your donors’ credit card data.

Maintaining PCI compliance is critical for nonprofits that want to accept credit card donations online. Make sure that the payment gateway houses sensitive data offsite on PCI-compliant servers to fully protect donations.

PCI compliance reduces security risks for your organization, and assures your donors that their sensitive credit card data remains protected at all times.

3. Integration

If you invoice with a common accounting system like QuickBooks, Microsoft Dynamics, or Sage 100, then you can accept credit card payments directly inside your existing system.

In order to receive the best credit card processing for nonprofits, make sure to find a payment processor that offers a native integration to your ERP/accounting software, online shopping cart, or CRM system.

The integration should mark outstanding invoices as paid immediately, eliminating the need to go back into your software at the end of the day to reconcile your invoices or balance your General Ledger.

In addition, the payment solution should be developed and maintained by in-house software developers to provide your organization with the most up-to-date integrations available.

4. Customer Support

Credit card processing can seem like a complicated process. That’s why it is important to find a processor that offers 24/7 in-house customer support for your organization.

Your donations should never have to wait. Whenever you have a question, you’ll want to get it answered as soon as possible. To best serve your needs, your payment processor should have extensive experience working with nonprofit organizations.

Make sure that your payment processor is available at all times for support, training, and inquiries, ensuring that you can always process donations with ease.

5. Capabilities and Features

The best credit card processing for nonprofits should provide powerful reporting tools that save your organization time. Be sure to find a processor that offers these robust features for your nonprofit:

  • Unlimited transactions/batch history for reporting purposes
  • Powerful search functionality to run custom reports
  • Ability to sort through transactions by category
  • Immediate release of funds
  • Ability to assign users and manage access limits with ease

The reliability of your payment processor is critical for day-to-day operations. A reliable payment processor that offers these essential features will help foster recurring donations from your donors. If they trust your donation process, they will be more like to make contributions to your organization in the future.

Bonus Tips:

People spend up to 18% more when using credit cards instead of cash, according to Business Insider, making online donations for nonprofits essential for your organization. Follow these 5 tips to get the best credit card processing for nonprofits, and you’ll be on your way to maximizing donations to help support your cause.

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