My whole team is excited that the Luminate Benchmark is now available. We love seeing how well nonprofits are using technology to engage, gain donations and grow as an organization.

I’ve had the pleasure to work with the Luminate Online product since the very first release. It continues to amaze me how impactful the platform is in driving fundraising and engagement success for nonprofit organizations; and it keeps getting better every year! This year alone, more than $1.5 billion has been raised to support organizations doing great work. Plus 6.3 billion emails have been sent to keep supporters updated! This broad data set provides for some interesting benchmarks and insights.

I’m excited to see that the percentage of housefile donating has grown to 13.4%. I think this is driven by more organizations focusing on engagement with their housefile leading to a more active file and more fundraising activity. We’re also seeing more and more organizations with a portfolio of online giving campaigns. This provides more opportunities for donors to find campaigns that match how and why they want to support the organization. Over the last several years we’re seeing more organizations adding peer-to-peer programs, sustainer giving, micro-campaigns and gift catalogs. As median housefile size is growing to above 120,000 email addresses it’s now feasible for more organizations to put best practices in place. The investment return and scale now makes it feasible for more organizations to add a welcome series, segment audiences for specific email communications, use personalization techniques and even test their email communication program’s effectiveness.

It’s exciting to see the growth of online donations and to compare these against what’s happening in ecommerce and watch the parallel trends. For 2015 Q2 ecommerce sales grew 4.2%. Organizations using Luminate Online saw 8.89% when measured across the full year. Retailers are seeing 7% of all sales coming in through ecommerce and this is right in line with the year-over-year increase in the number of donations processed online based on reports from both Blackbaud and Network for Good. As we see online giving being a bigger and bigger percentage of overall giving we’re seeing organizations increase investment, strategies and interest in this fast growing giving segment.

According to the Luminate Benchmark, monthly sustainer giving revenue grew by over 7%! I always encourage organizations to put sustainer programs in place for a number of reasons. First more and more donors are comfortable giving this way just as they would pay for a Netflix account and can often give more throughout the year when spreading the payments. These programs also typically have steady growth when focused campaigns are used to add and engage new donors and there is high donor retention in these programs. Organizations are beginning to put upgrade campaigns in place to allow donors to make a stronger contribution.

Check out the Luminate Benchmark today!