Crowdfunding vs. Peer-to-Peer Fundraising: What’s the Difference?

4 min
graphic of a peer-to-peer fundraising page and crowdfunding page

Unless you spend all day, every day thinking about fundraising pages (like we do), there are times you might get the concepts of peer-to-peer fundraising and crowdfunding confused. To help you identify the key differences and best times to create these pages, below are the purposes of each campaign type and occasions to run each.

Crowdfunding Campaigns

Crowdfunding campaigns are versatile appeals for your community’s support. Use a campaign landing page to accept general donations, raise money for a specific project, or drive support for a time-based initiative.

No matter what’s driving the campaign, the main call to action on a crowdfunding landing page is to donate. All Classy Crowdfunding pages feature one main donate button. However, organizations can add Impact Levels that describe how certain donation amounts support their cause. These can help donors select and follow through with specific contribution amounts.

Love146 uses Impact Levels to provide examples of the difference $50, $110, $350, and $700 can make.

Crowdfunding vs. Peer-to-Peer : What's the Difference?

When to Build a Crowdfunding Campaign

Your organization can run crowdfunding and peer-to-peer campaigns simultaneously, but there are times when one method of fundraising may make more sense over the other.

You’d likely decide to run a crowdfunding campaign if you need to:

  • Create a dynamic, beautiful general donation page
  • Design specific landing pages that cater to different segments of donors
  • Run a campaign for a specific day, such as a national awareness day or #GivingTuesday

Read Next for a Deeper Dive: What is Crowdfunding?

Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Campaign

Compared to a traditional crowdfunding campaign, peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns have the power to reach a larger audience because individual supporters solicit their networks for donations. These campaigns can serve as time-based initiatives or a year-round fundraising opportunity.

The main purpose of a peer-to-peer page is to call supporters to fundraise on behalf of your organization. While there is also an option to complete a one-time donation, the goal of the page is to recruit individuals who will appeal to their personal networks.

Instead of Impact Levels that depict the significance of a single donation amount, the Impact Levels on Classy’s peer-to-peer landing page convey the impact an individual could make as a fundraiser.

Barbells for Boobs, for instance, used the Impact Levels to highlight perks that fundraisers could earn for raising different amounts. When a potential fundraiser clicks “fundraise” they are directed to set up a personal fundraising page.

Crowdfunding vs. Peer-to-Peer: What’s the Difference?

When to Build a Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Campaign

You can run time-based peer-to-peer campaigns, create a year-round fundraising option that allows supporters to dedicate their life events, or run both simultaneously.

These peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns can serve to:

  • Leverage the network of your supporter base to raise more money
  • Tap into the network of certain key influencers, such as brand ambassadors, celebrity supporters, or board members
  • Give donors a year-round option to raise money on behalf of your organization for different life events, such as birthdays or weddings

Read Next for a Deeper Dive: What is Peer-to-Peer?


In the modern world of fundraising, crowdfunding and peer-to-peer campaigns are two essential tools in your organization’s development arsenal. Both power your appeals and empower your staff to design beautiful pages that convert visitors. Want to explore crowdfunding and peer-to-peer on Classy? Request a demo today.


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