Recently I was invited to contribute to an article about whether fundraising is art or science — I say both!
But it’s not just the $ and cents that mater.
As my development audit clients will tell you, we look at many key performance indicators (KPIs) to assess progress (or lack thereof). Here are 3 #s that you need to know now (particularly if you just ended a fiscal year).
1. Donor retention rate (which is falling across the sector).
In short, this number tells you if and how many donors are sticking with you. If you use a database like DonorPerfect, Neon, or a Blackbaud product your system can calculate the retention rate for you.
I suggest tracking this number over five consecutive fiscal years to reveal key trends.
2. # of Donors Active the Past Five Years
If you already are or are considering soliciting planned gifts you need to know this #! That’s because the size of a donor’s gifts are not the best predictor of a future gift.
It’s the longevity of giving that matters most when it comes to planned giving!
3. Lifetime Value
Lifetime value is simply the total amount of dollars that you will receive from a donor over the years during which they contribute to your nonprofit. Here’s a great piece that provides helpful information:
The end of a fiscal year is the perfect time to complete a development audit.
If you want to learn more on your own you can visit the
Fundraising Effectiveness Project.
If you would welcome assistance, please send a note to me here.