Overall Giving Trends
Overall Giving Growth YOY
Three-Year Increase in Overall Giving
Percentage of Contributions in December
Average donation amount
Overall giving in 2020 grew 2.0% on a year-over-year basis for the 8,833 nonprofit organizations in the analysis. This is the ninth consecutive year where the Charitable Giving Report has reported an increase in giving.
Overall Giving Trends by Size
Fundraising by large organizations, with total annual fundraising of more than $10 million, was up 5.3%. Medium-sized organizations, with total annual fundraising between $1 million and $10 million, had an increase of 1.2% on a year-over-year basis. Small nonprofits, with total annual fundraising less than $1 million, experienced a 7.2% decrease in fundraising results compared to 2019.
A three-year view of fundraising from the same organizations revealed a 5.3% growth in overall giving. Taking a longitudinal view of giving trends helps provide a more representative perspective of what is happening with charitable giving in the United States. Fundraising challenges in 2020 clearly impacted smaller nonprofits and is apparent in the three-year as well. Large and medium-sized organizations continued to have a very positive three-year growth trend.
2020 Overall Giving Trends by Size
U.S. Donor Profiles and Behaviors
Using data science and data assets, Blackbaud Target Analytics® is in a unique position to provide key insights into the U.S. nonprofit subsector and its donors. These insights provide answers to some of the most common questions asked by fundraising and nonprofit professionals.
Average Age of Donor in the U.S.
Long recognized as one of the most reliable predictors of giving, age reflects life experience and correlates to earning capacity and relative debt reduction. More critically, age is just one of many demographic indicators that provides a solid foundation for identifying, connecting with, and stewarding your most valuable constituents.
First-Year, Offline-Only Donor Retention Rate
Multi-Year, Offline-Only Donor Retention Rate
Your organization should calculate your overall donor retention rate annually to assess who chooses to stay in your donor circle every year. While organizations with a high retention rate keep or renew many donors from year to year, those with a low rate must acquire new donors to keep their bottom lines above water. This reinforces the significance of calculating retention to benchmark your internal progress from year to year.
Average Donation Amount
Average Online Donation Amount
Median Donation Amount for Gifts Below $1,000
Median Donation Amount for Gifts Above $1,000
In addition to these figures, you can better target the right donors—those with the capacity and a propensity to give to your cause—just by knowing more about their spending habits. Resources like the Share of the American Wallet report illuminate trends in spending and the demographic indicators that support organizations in efficiently identifying top prospects.
Overall Giving Trends by Nonprofit Subsector
Taking a longer view of subsector trends, nonprofit organizations in the Human Services, Public and Society Benefit, Faith-based, and Animal Welfare subsectors have had the best three-year giving trend performance.
Three-Year Rolling Trend
2020 Average Donation Amount by Subsector
New this year in the Charitable Giving Report is the measure of average donation size by subsector. Across all subsectors, the average donation amount is $737. There is a significant variance among different subsectors. It is attributable to organizations with a larger number of major and principal donations from donors. For example, Higher Education organizations have an average donation of $1,671 compared to $272 for Animal Welfare nonprofits. This analysis includes all donations, including large major donations. Nearly every subsector experienced significant growth in average gift amounts in 2020 compared to 2019.
2020 Average Overall Donation Amounts by Subsector
Overall Giving Trends by Month
Last year was a continuation of multi-year trends in monthly giving patterns. October, November, and December continue to represent 36% of charitable giving, which has been true for many years now. While December remains the largest month as a percentage of giving, June continues to drive giving due to end-of-fiscal year fundraising campaigns.
While a look at year-over-year change provides a glimpse into recent months, we must look at data from a multi-year perspective to understand the full scope of giving trends. Organizations should anticipate growth as they kick off giving days and end-of-year campaigns. Know which months yield the highest giving for your organization, and ensure that you are prepared to use these opportunities and maximize your end-of-year campaign.
2020 Overall Monthly Giving Distribution by Subsector
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