Study: #GivingTuesday Dollars Skyrocketing

January 16, 2015       Patrick Sullivan      

It’s not a secret anymore that #GivingTuesday is gaining momentum. The percentage of both total dollars and number of donations made on #GivingTuesday in 2012 was 1.3 percent of year-end giving. That increased to 3.8 percent of total year-end dollars and 4.2 percent of all gifts by 2014.

Between the first #GivingTuesday in 2012 and #GivingTuesday 2014, the amount raised grew 239 percent. Five payment processors reported some $34.9 million raised online and another 10.8 million offline, totaling $45.7 million, for #GivingTuesday 2014. About 296,000 gifts were given to 15,100 nonprofits on #GivingTuesday 2014. The day also garnered 33 million impressions on Twitter.

These are some results from an analysis of #GivingTuesday produced by the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, in conjunction with the firm CCS, Network for Good and the Case Foundation. In particular, the study analyzed and picked out trends from a data set provided by Network for Good.

There are some 4,000 organizations in Network for Good’s data set, and they receive approximately $300 million in donations annually. The analysis found that the number of donations from the three #GivingTuesdays grew 371 percent, and the total amount rose 349 percent.

Network for Good captured the most payments via branded websites all three years. The share of branded web pages has grown from 45 percent in 2012 to 59 percent in 2014. Peer-to-peer and social networks were the next most popular platform, staying constant at either 23 percent or 24 percent all three years. The “other” category–comprised of events, campaigns and other methods of giving—saw the sharpest decline, falling from 22 percent in 2012 to just 9 percent last year.

“The growth in #GivingTuesday donations, by number and amount, are not surprising given that significant marketing coincided with the launch of #GivingTuesday for each of these years,” wrote the report’s authors. The peer-to-peer/social media channel “is particularly revealing,” they wrote. About to 2.7 percent of all year-end donations from peer-to-peer or social media came on #GivingTuesday 2012. That grew to 5.2 percent in 2013 and 5.8 percent in 2014.

“These findings demonstrate that #GivingTuesday is having a true impact on the charitable landscape through the number of donations given, the amounts raised and the number of nonprofits participating,” wrote the authors. “If past participation rates of the involvement of nonprofits and individuals in #GivingTuesday are any indication of this movement’s success, then we believe #GivingTuesday will become a permanent fixture in the global philanthropic landscape.”