It takes a social hermit these days to not have seen, experienced, or heard of a Personal Crowdfunding Campaign.
The truth is we all have times of need or projects that we’d love to be able to complete. So, what are your real options for crowdfunding in the WordPress space?
What is crowdfunding?
Crowdfunding is a way of using your community to invest in you, your company, product, or to help with needs. Crowdfunding is more than just a tip jar, but serves a different purpose than fundraising for nonprofits — it can be used by a wider audience. Crowdfunding can help launch your music recording or help pay medical bills. Give can be used to accomplish your goals or help with personal funding needs.
Traditional crowdfunding features such as building teams, assigning master leaders, allowing donors to vote with their dollars through Goals and charging credit cards when the campaign has achieved it’s goal aren’t part of Give yet (but vote it up at the link). However, that hasn’t stopped WordPress developers and end users alike from spinning up a site, installing Give, and alerting their community to the need.
Crowdfunding has a cost. It’s just not the payment gateway fees (standard operating cost), but many sites like GoFundMe, IndieGoGo, or Kickstarter also take a percentage. After all, you’re using their website, community, and infrastructure. Just be sure you’re able to afford that cut and be aware that some sites don’t fund the project if it does not meet your goal.
Jason Knill, our Co-Founder, wrote a great comparison article about these fees for your reference and study.
Real people. Real need.
WordPress users are savvy and part of an active, thriving, and generous community. We’re honored to have been able to play a small role in so many crowdfunding stories lately.
Here are some highlights from personal crowdfunding stories we’ve collected since we started the Give Stories series.
A world-wide tour is exactly that — world-wide. Trace needs the funds to travel to Europe and back, travel to Alaska and back, and then go back to Europe. After only one week they hit 50% of their goal. He was able to go to the competition.
Marc and Jessica have a desire to help others led them to act, when, this past August, they met a homeless mother and her four children sleeping in a broken down car parked in the alley behind their house. They had been living in the car for a while and the situation seemed bleak. They decided to help.
“In ten minutes I had a simple donation form created. In less than an hour I had $1,000 raised to help this poor family.” ~ Marc Benzakein
Thom had been in an accident that left him in a wheelchair without access to reliable transportation. His friend Adam and Blue Steele Solutions didn’t just standby without acting. They contacted us with a few questions, created a site, and installed Give.
“In less than a week, we had over $3,000…I think that $3,000 figure is actually a little misleading — because after 8 days or so, the campaign (and Thom’s need) reached his aunt and uncle. They had no idea Thom needed help — but they were ready to contribute (and in a VERY big way). They Sent Thom a Check for $5,000 — That Wouldn’t Have Happened Without the online fundraising campaign.” ~ Adam Fout
Jesse Petersen, a seasoned Genesis developer and his wife, found themselves in a position to adopt a boy who knew no other family. Funds had to be raised quickly with minimal fees or effort. They used Give.
“I can say, without a doubt, that Give is the best tool for self-hosting your fundraising needs. If you know how to use WordPress and know anything about being on a host that allows for an SSL or you can install one yourself with Let’s Encrypt for free, then you’re already almost done.” Jesse Petersen
What’s stopping you?
If you can develop a WordPress site, you can use Give to crowdfund your dream, help a friend regain freedom, or produce a concerto.