BidPal’s Online Tools Help Nonprofits on Giving Tuesday and Beyond

BidPal, the Indianapolis-based startup behind mobile bidding and fundraising software for nonprofits, has established an online resource center just in time for upcoming #GivingTuesday campaigns. (More on Giving Tuesday below.)

Since its inception in 2008, the company has helped 2,800 organizations connect with more than 1 million donors to raise more than $1 billion. Karrie Wozniak, BidPal’s vice president of sales and marketing, says her company’s website is designed simply so even those without a lot of online experience are comfortable using it.

“We make it super easy because a lot of nonprofits are staffed by volunteers,” she explains. “Our key goal is providing the resources and technology that enable donors and nonprofits to participate.”

Wozniak says BidPal’s customers include private and faith-based schools, political campaigns, and healthcare organizations. Nonprofits work with BidPal either remotely or in person to craft fundraising campaigns and other ways to engage with donors. “We help organizations raise three to four times more than they would with a paper auction,” she adds.

BidPal, which has almost 100 full-time employees working in its corporate headquarters in Indiana as well as smaller offices across the country, makes money by selling access to its software on a subscription basis. MK Capital and Allos Ventures are the company’s lead investors.

Given BidPal’s corporate mission, Wozniak says it made sense to offer free tools to help nonprofits maximize Giving Tuesday, the national movement to encourage philanthropic activity, particularly online. Last year, Giving Tuesday spurred 698,961 donors to contribute an average of $107.47, a 470 percent increase over online donations made on Giving Tuesday in 2012. This year, Giving Tuesday falls on Nov. 29.

BidPal’s free online resource center includes a list of best practices, email templates, sample social media posts, customizable images for use in fundraising materials, webinars, blog posts, and more. Wozniak says the point is to reach donors where they are—on their mobile phones and laptops—and set nonprofits up for success.

As for her top tip to nonprofits hoping to rack up donations? “It’s all about starting early and communicating with your donor base,” she says. “Drum up activity and excitement.” It’s the end of the year, when people know their budgets and may feel more generous because they’re filled with the holiday spirit, she adds. “They’re ready to give.”

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