Online donations to U.S. nonprofit groups are growing much faster than other types of gifts, according to new research by The Chronicle of Philanthropy.
The Chronicle found that online donations in 2012 grew to $2.1 billion, a 14% increase from the previous year, based on information provided by online-fundraising processors Blackbaud, Network for Good and PayPal.
Online giving to the country’s biggest charitable groups also grew by 14%, it said.
Meanwhile, the Chronicle noted, total donations grew only 3.5%, or 1.5% adjusted for inflation, according to Giving USA’s yearly study.
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Notwithstanding continued growth, online giving still accounts for only a small fraction of most charities’ budgets. According to the Chronicle’s research, the median share is just 2.1% of all donations from private sources for the large charities surveyed.
That’s changing. Nearly three-quarters of the groups surveyed had a goal for online donations to account for more than 10% of their overall fundraising efforts in coming years, and about a fifth expected Internet gifts to account for as much as 20% of their overall donations.