Enabling parishioners to easily give online significantly increases overall giving, according to Bryce Collman, CEO of Keller, Texas-based Ardent Giving Solutions, a developer of electronic solutions to help churches, nonprofits and schools grow their giving and fulfill their missions.
“Online giving is a powerful tool, particularly in engaging the younger, under-50 members of a church congregation,” says Collman.
But problems can arise when these members use credit cards to give.
“We’ve heard from many churches they are not comfortable with credit cards,” Collman explains. “Part of the problem is that it is easy for people to get too enthusiastic while they are online, and put more on their credit card than they should.” And at the same time, “You have a lot of churches teaching classes about getting your financial house in order, and a big part of that is not using credit cards—and then they turn right around and say it’s ok to use them on their website.”
Ardent’s solution to this predicament is “Debit Card Only Online Giving.” This allows churches to accept only debit card donations online, while blocking credit card transactions from being processed.
“If someone attempts to use a credit card, they get a gentle reminder to please try again using their debit card,” says Collman. The system allows churches opposed to credit card giving “to still take advantage of the power online giving brings to them—in a very user-friendly fashion.”