A Smarter Way to Fundraise: Explore Classy’s Fundraising Intelligence Suite

Here’s How Each Member of Your Nonprofit Staff Fuels Fundraising Success

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Published August 4, 2021 Reading Time: 4 minutes

There are many nonprofit roles that are responsible for fundraising. Nonprofits who get more of their staff involved in their online fundraising strategy prove to be more successful in driving donations. Working as a team to maximize donations benefits supports your nonprofit’s mission and overall financial health.

Gather Around Today’s Fundraising Trends

On average, successful nonprofits bring four users into their Classy platform within the first 90 days. Those nonprofits see an 84% higher donation volume and 122% more transactions than those who don’t take advantage of multiple users and features.

In this post, we’ll look at how to be a high-performing team when multiple stakeholders are confidently using your fundraising software. We’ll outline the role each area of a nonprofit’s organizational structure plays in a successful fundraising strategy and the value that each user from different areas of your nonprofit can gain by getting involved.

Breaking Down Your Nonprofit Staff Structure for Fundraising Success

1. Development and Fundraising

Your development and fundraising team typically owns campaign creation, supporter management, and reporting. The focus of this team is to identify and implement online giving and other fundraising events to grow a sustainable revenue stream for your nonprofit.

High-performing teams will use reporting features to gauge success over time and see where there are opportunities for improvement. Members of this team review fundraising metrics, such as:

  • Which recurring donors have upcoming credit card expirations, in order to stay ahead of lapsed recurring gifts
  • Number of returning one-time donors, in order to identify good candidates to convert to recurring donors
  • Number of top donors who have gone a year since their last contribution, in order to establish a re-engagement plan with them

With such a close connection to the ins and outs of fundraising, members of this team can teach other departments the basics of fundraising and how they can support that work.

2. Database Owners

Database owners on your team ensure donations sync up with your customer relationship management (CRM) system, such as Salesforce.

They use donor data to deduplicate customer records, which ensures you have all the information to build a relationship with a donor in one place. They may also receive payout reports or other data from different teams to incorporate and track within a database. They’ll look at metrics on missing donor data, address updates, and donor actions.

High-performing teams collaborate with database owners to ensure everything is organized and accessible for successful campaigns and relationship building. One example of how nonprofits get their database owners involved in their Classy fundraising platform is through Classy Pay, our seamless integration with Stripe.

3. Marketing and Design

Your marketing and design team can lead the storytelling efforts of each of your campaigns. They’ll collaborate with the development and fundraising team to map out the year’s campaigns and match them to original, impactful stories and data that show your nonprofit’s value to potential donors.

Marketing and design specialists can ensure your brand shines through in your campaigns’ designs and narratives with the functionality in your fundraising platform. By selecting emotional imagery, following your nonprofit’s style guide, and considering elements like donation button placement, they create compelling campaign pages and promotional materials that drive donations.

High-performing marketing and design team members will be interested in tracking metrics on donor engagement with different campaigns to learn ways to improve for the future.

We selected Classy’s platform because we all felt like this is a user-friendly platform and the organization itself aligns very well with our values.

Senior Vice President of Marketing

Heifer International

Download The Nonprofit’s Donation Page Checklist

4. Volunteering and Direct Services

Volunteer coordinators and direct services staff have ground-level experience with your mission. They spend their days implementing services that support your mission, organizing volunteer events for others to directly engage with your mission, and collecting data on the work they perform.

The metrics that matter to these team members are those related to the direct impact of your mission, such as:

  • How many people were served this year
  • How many volunteer hours were recorded for a park cleanup event
  • How close you are to meeting a service goal

High-performing volunteer coordination and direct services teams can pass along impact stories to the marketing staff and identify projects worth highlighting for donors. They can also identify volunteers the development team can cultivate as donors, and work with other teams to learn which are in need of volunteer help.

We prioritize donor gratitude and retention, so when we learned about the activity wall feature, we knew it was a perfect way to help express donor gratitude on an individual basis without it being difficult or time-consuming. We set up a specific account for volunteers that limited their access to only what they needed in order to comment on donations on our behalf within our Classy account. One volunteer even applied for a service grant for the time she spent on gratitude comments for us.

Development Specialist


5. Finance

Your finance team takes care of reconciling donations and surfacing insights on incoming revenue. They can ensure you’re getting the most out of using Classy Pay, which has the lowest processing rates in the industry, automatic credit card updating, enhanced reconciliation, and powerful fraud protection.

They’ll be interested in metrics related to things like which projects need funding focus and how unrestricted funding levels are doing.

A high-performing finance team keeps all of your departments afloat and can collaborate with different teams to understand how to shape the most effective budget possible for your nonprofit’s work.

There was definitely a benefit to switching over to Classy Pay, especially moving sooner rather than later, because ACH donations can help reduce churn, and the capabilities for processing were just greatly improved.

Finance & Operations Manager

Savory Institute

6. Information Technology

Your IT team helps to maximize integrations between your Classy platform and other tools in your business ecosystem. They’ll make sure that your technology is easy to use and able to support what each team needs to be able to do to ensure effective campaigns.

Your IT team will be interested in tracking metrics around how well your systems are performing and overall donor and data security measures.

High-performing IT teams play an important role in fundraising success through preventing and troubleshooting technology issues surrounding your campaign and donor relationship-building efforts.

We recently transitioned from another online fundraising platform to Classy and it has been an amazing experience! The overall product and managed package is so much more nimble and lightweight in comparison to other similar products built on the Salesforce platform.

Solution Architect

Year Up

See Fundraising Benchmarks From 5,000+ Nonprofits

Optimize Your Fundraising Success by Leveraging the Various Nonprofit Roles Your Team Plays

Each member of your nonprofit’s staff plays a key role in fundraising success. By learning how each person fits into your team, you can increase the effectiveness of your campaigns and donor relationships.

See exactly how your fundraising stacks up today against thousands of nonprofits, and which gaps to focus on as you get team members involved.


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