Welcome to part 3 of the series on building a real-life charity WordPress theme.
This post is all about choosing a charity WordPress donation plugin. The donation plugin will be a very important part of any website and will determine how successful your website is.
A good one will look professional, make it easy for supporters to donate and will be easy to integrate into the website. I also wanted something with very low start-up costs as I know many small charities don’t want to spend monthly fees on expensive solutions.
As this series is based on a UK charity, I also needed a WordPress donation plugin that works with gift aid – a scheme available in the UK that enables charities to reclaim tax on donations by UK taxpayers.
WordPress donation plugin Contenders
After quite a bit of searching around, I narrowed my plugin choice down to 3 contenders.
Contender 1 – Charitable
The first of these was Charitable, an awesome fundraising plugin that appeared to be very flexible and feature rich. Their website looked great and it had all the features I needed.
The costs for Charitable vary between a ‘pay what you want’ (very basic) package, a ‘plus’ package at $99 per year which includes premium payment gateways and gift-aid, and finally, a ‘pro’ package at $249 per year that allows recurring donation as well as some other cool features.
All these packages within Charitable were for a single site licence.
Contender 2 – Give
Give looked like another amazing solution that had all the features I needed for my charity WordPress website.
Give is a well known player in the WordPress charity plugin world. It seemed like a great product with lots of handy add ons like pdf receipts, recurring donations and integration with tools like MailChimp too. They also have a gift aid plugin so they certainly provided everything I needed and more.
I did find the website a little more confusing than Charitable though. Charitable made everything very simple, but with Give, I wasn’t sure at first which addons were available in which packages.
After a bit of digging around it looked like I would need the ‘Plus’ package that included all premium add ons. This seemed like good value but it was still significantly more than Charitable at $30 per month (Charitable would work out at just over $8 a month).
The Give WordPress plugin also has 2 different packages – a basic package at $20 a month and a pro package at $40 a month. The basic package only includes basic adds and the pro package had a licence for up to 5 sites, so if you did want a solution for multiple sites, Give could be very good value for money.
Contender 3 – Donorbox
The third contender is a little different to the others because it is not designed specifically for WordPress. It can actually be installed on any website.
Donorbox is an awesome platform for accepting donations on your website and it is completely free for charities receiving less than $1000 in donations each month. This makes it a very attractive solution for small charities. Once you grow beyond $1000 in donations each month, they charge a platform fee of 1.5%, so the pricing structure is very reasonable and there are no monthly fees at all.
OK, so the pricing is good, but how were the features?
Donorbox has recurring donations, gift aid, all the payment gateways you could want, multi-currency, social media integration and app integration all included by default – no need to buy different packages or add ons.
You can probably guess by now that I chose option 3 – Donorbox, although all these systems are great.
The fact that I didn’t have to go pay monthly and I could set up the system so easily were the things that made me choose Donorbox.
Here’s a shot of Donorbox up and running on the Arian Teleheal website:
I was really impressed by how well it blended into the website and how good the user experience is. It is really easy to integrate with Google Analytics too.
Awesome job Donorbox!
All the tools mentioned here are great WordPress donation plugins, and hopefully, this guide will help you make your own choice. If you are setting up your own charity WordPress website, good on you! I’d love to know about it if you are.