Every year the donations that take place on #GivingTuesday increase, with 2017 bringing in a total of $2.4 million. It’s important to understand year-to-year the trends that take place within this annual event, when more donations are made on a single day than on any other day of the calendar year.

So, let’s take a look at the insights we can glean from #GivingTuesday 2017:

More Online Donations

While every year online donations have continued to grow, they fully took off this year with an increase of 52% in online donations. Major platforms (such as Paypal or Network for Good) that have been used in the past continued to see large donation amounts but what really may have been the game-changer was Facebook fundraising.

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation pledged $2 million in match money for Facebook fundraisers on #GivingTuesday and Facebook waived fees normally associated with hosting a fundraiser on their platform. While the matching gift money went quickly (it ran out by 8:04 am), the existing fundraisers on Facebook continued to attract donations all day and definitely lent to the increase in online giving this year.

Top Giving Trends

More than $2.4 million in gifts were given globally on #GivingTuesday 2017, and the majority of these went to support the following types of organizations:

  • Public and societal benefit
  • Human services
  • Education
  • Health
  • Environment and animals

Another interesting trend uncovered in 2017’s Insight Report is that #GivingTuesday is both engaging for your regular donors, and may also motivate less-engaged donors to give more often throughout the year.

With the outpouring of donations for disaster relief only months before #GivingTuesday 2017, it’s worth noting that the donations increased despite earlier giving and supported organizations beyond those who deliver relief.

Story-telling Tactics for Getting Attention

Keeping the attention of the many different donors getting ready to give can be a challenge, but story-telling with a full narrative can give your organization a boost. Stories that included photos, especially of young children, performed well on #GivingTuesday.

In general, giving any kind of video or image to the story helped produce better results – as did keeping the story to about 500 words for Facebook posting.

Emotionally-driven story-telling for fundraising organizations has been proven to increase donations and engagement with a cause. It’s well worth the effort to put together a great story to share with potential donors and supporters to keep growing your programs and services.


Understanding giving trends in the nonprofit space can ensure you’re reaching supporters the best ways. Remember for 2018 to incorporate some of the items that we’ve discussed here – such as telling a good story or encouraging online giving – and don’t forget to participate in #GivingTuesday 2018!

Gabrielle Perham

Gabrielle Perham

Gabrielle is the Director of Marketing for AccuData Integrated Marketing, AlumniFinder’s parent organization. She joined the organization in 2017 and brings more than 15 years of experience in nonprofit marketing and development, branding, communications, and digital marketing. She earned a B.S. in Marketing and an M.B.A in Marketing Management from the University of Tampa. Go Spartans!