Ready to start raising funds for your cause? Before you launch your next campaign, you need a fundraising site to rally your supporters, collect donations, and bring your innovative fundraising ideas to life.
Below, we examine eight of the best fundraising sites out there.
We compare functionality, fees, and which groups they are best suited for to help you find the right platform to boost your fundraising efforts.
1. Bonfire 👕
Best for: T-shirt fundraising
Bonfire is a fundraising website created for a very specific niche: T-shirt fundraising. Individuals and nonprofits alike create their own online stores to sell custom-designed shirts for a cause. To launch a campaign, users can use a design template or request a custom design from various artists for $49-$99, depending on the work involved.
Selling through Bonfire is completely free, with profits (read: not total sales) going toward your cause. Bonfire deducts the base cost (manufacturing, sourcing, and printing expenses) from your gross sales, then charges extra for shipping ($2.50-$9.99 per product, depending on your location). If you allow buyers to donate extra to your campaign, Bonfire takes an 8% payment processing fee.
Bonfire vs. Givebutter
While Bonfire offers a fun way to support your cause, its niche is so narrow it puts many campaign types out of the running. In fact, if you plan on raising money virtually any other way beyond T-shirt sales — including galas, virtual cook-offs, charity golf tournaments, a 5k race/walk, or other fun ideas — this simply isn't the solution for you. Givebutter, by comparison, offers ticketed fundraising events, live streams, individual fundraising pages, and one-click social sharing to create innovative campaigns.
2. Fundly 🤑
Best for: Nonprofits
Fundly allows you to create custom fundraising pages to help you raise money. Fundly comes with a desktop version and mobile app, allowing fundraisers to manage their campaign pages on the go. In addition, campaign pages allow you to set a goal, add images and videos, add giving levels, and customize the logo, colors, and background. Lastly, it allows you to email supporters and campaign staff alike, keeping everyone updated on your cause.
While Fundly advertises themselves as a fundraising platform built for clubs, schools, personal causes, and charitable organizations, the hefty platform fees make it inaccessible for many organizations. Fundly takes a 4.9% platform fee per transaction, while Stripe (their payment processor) takes an additional 2.9% + $0.30 per transaction, adding up to nearly 8% worth of fees.
Fundly vs. Givebutter
The main drawback of Fundly is the hefty credit card and platform fees. In addition, since Fundly only accepts online donations through Stripe, it could take weeks (or months!) to get your payout.
By stark comparison, Givebutter allows supporters to give through every way possible (ACH, text-to-donate, and even mailing a check). Givebutter's average total fee is just 0.05%, so you keep more of the funds you raise, and with instant payouts, you get that money faster.
3. Patreon 🎨
Best for: Creatives
Patreon is a crowdfunding platform built for artists, creatives, podcasters, and influencers.
The concept is simple: Creatives earn a sustainable source of income through their most loyal fan group.
In exchange, fans (who pay a monthly donation), get access to exclusive creative projects, like photographs, podcast episodes, newsletters, or articles.
Patreon takes a percentage of your earnings as your membership fee. For their lite membership tier, they take 5% of your income for a simple creator page and communication tools (email, page posts, and direct messages). If you want more features — like your own membership tiers, special offers, analytics, and integrations — you'll need to give up 8% of your earnings. Lastly, for all the bells and whistles (including merchandise and team accounts), you'll give up 12% of what you earn.
Patreon vs. Givebutter
Patreon does not support schools, nonprofits, clubs, sports teams, or other groups (who would be better off using Givebutter’s recurring donation feature). Patreon is just for individual creatives. In addition, Patreon's subscription model is meant for continuous use. If you need a one-time fundraising campaign for your neighbor's knee surgery or recording your own album, you're out of luck.
Finally, taking 5-12% of your earnings seems positively ridiculous. Chances are, your supporters wouldn't be too happy that one-tenth of their donations are going to the platform, not to you. With Givebutter, supporters are given the chance to cover the only fee — the credit card fee — and 95% choose to do so.
4. Classy 📊
Best for: National or global nonprofit organizations
Classy is a robust online fundraising platform built for nonprofits hoping to scale globally. Classy offers a number of advanced fundraising tools, such as a built-in CRM system, campaign and event management, individualized supporter interactions, and detailed reporting and analytics.
Unfortunately, while Classy sells itself as having all the bells and whistles, it's missing some very basic features. While it accepts 130+ currencies across the globe, it doesn't accept Venmo, Apple Pay, Google Pay, or text-to-donate. And while it offers automated workflows and registration tracking for events, it doesn't offer ticket scanning, Google Maps, or an "Add to calendar" button.
Classy vs. Givebutter
While Classy's fundraising software offers a number of advanced features, it's missing the mark on must-have options for grassroots nonprofits, schools, teams, and clubs. In addition, Classy doesn’t offer transparent pricing. You must fill out a form to speak with a sales rep to find out what Classy costs.
Luckily, we've done the work for you — Classy charges a sky-high $500+ per month subscription fee, plus 5.9% + $0.30 per transaction.
5. Kickstarter 🎊
Best for: Small businesses
Kickstarter is one of the most well-known crowdfunding sites. Through Kickstarter's all-or-nothing model, creatives, startups, and small businesses use the platform to fund creative projects or business opportunities. If enough backers support the venture to hit the fundraising goal, the organizer keeps the funds. If not, every cent is returned to the original funders.
Kickstarter offers limited features on their donation pages, including message invites, surveys, third-party integrations, and a feed where backers can add comments. To access these features, Kickstarter charges a 5% platform fee, plus a 3% + $0.20 credit card processing fee per pledge.
Kickstarter vs. Givebutter
Kickstarter is strictly meant for creative or business ventures, so it's unsuitable for schools, clubs, nonprofits, or personal fundraising. In addition, Kickstarter doesn't offer a number of payment methods — like PayPal, Apple Pay, scan-to-give, recurring donations, or Venmo.
Kickstarter's crowdfunding websites are incredibly basic, lacking functionality allowing you to create ticketed events, live stream, do multi-team fundraising, send SMS invites, and create custom thank-you messages.
Givebutter's fees are much lower, averaging just 0.05% per crowdfunding campaign. And unlike Kickstarter, with Givebutter everyone keeps what they raise — not just successful campaigns.
7. GoFundMe 💸
Best for: Individuals
GoFundMe is a free fundraising site built for individuals. To help individuals raise money for personal causes, GoFundMe offers a number of features: donation pages filled with videos and images, peer-to-peer fundraising, custom thank-you messages, and text, social media, and email invites.
While GoFundMe doesn’t have a platform fee, it does charge a 2.9% credit card fee on top of a $0.30 per transaction fee. Plus, it doesn't accept a variety of payment methods like Venmo, text-to-donate, or Apple Pay.
GoFundMe vs. Givebutter
GoFundMe is built for personal causes, and isn't a viable option for nonprofits, schools, or teams. In addition, it lacks a number of features that you get with Givebutter — like events, text invites, one-click social sharing, and the Givebutter fundraising hub. Lastly, it has higher fees with less payment options.
8. Why Givebutter is the best fundraising site for your campaign 💕
Givebutter offers more advanced features and functionality than other fundraising sites, while maintaining the lowest platform fees in the industry.
With Givebutter, you get access to 70+ features, including team fundraising, ticketed events, text and email invites, third-party integrations, and limitless payment options. Plus, Givebutter is built for everyone, offering solutions for teams, individuals, nonprofits, companies, and clubs.
Givebutter has a 0% platform fee while giving your supporters the option to cover your payment processing fees (and 95% choose to do so). The average fee is just 0.05% across all Givebutter campaigns — and unlike some platforms, everyone gets to keep what they raise.
Ready to see how Givebutter can help you raise funds for your cause? Get started with a free account today.
Rachel is a fundraising and marketing consultant for nonprofits whose aspiration since she was 16-years-old is simply this: help others, help others.