How To Overcome The Sharp Decline In Charity Donations

Monday 5 September 2022

Written by Suda Ratnam

How To Overcome The Sharp Decline In Charity Donations

How To Overcome The Sharp Decline In Charity Donations

According to a recent survey conducted by Charities Aid Foundation (CAF), the number of people donating to charities since 2019 in the UK is in a sharp decline. This is despite the easing of the COVID-locked measures since 2021. With the current increases in energy costs and price inflation, the number of people donating is likely to drop further still.

CAF said in the report that close to 5 million fewer people gave to charity or sponsored someone at the start of this year compared to 2019. The proportion of people saying they had donated to charity or sponsored someone during the past year dropped from 65% in the first four months of 2019 to 57% in the same period of 2022, according to polling and analysis by the Charities Aid Foundation. CAF chief executive, Neil Heslop, said that the drop in donations to charities overall was “a very concerning trend”To illustrate this trend over the last three years:

  • £10.6bn was given to charity in 2019
  • £11.3bn was given to charity in 2020
  • £10.7bn was given to charity in 2021 (estimated)

The general sentiment was reported that people were more generous and donated larger-than-usual sums in response to charities aiding the Ukraine crisis but, as the cost of living increases, the number of people giving to charities decreases. It's therefore apparent that charities need to innovate and make it easy for people to make donations.

How can you make it easy for people to make a donation to your charity? Ask yourself:

1. Do you have card terminals which can accept donations on the go?

I see more of these on the high streets these days compared to a few years ago. However, there are not enough of these out there. There are still many charities collecting cash, in front of shopping centres and supermarkets.

2. Is your charity’s online presence easy to understand and follow the work you are doing? 

People spend less than a minute on a page when they are searching for information. You must ensure that your website is mobile-friendly. The use of mobile devices for online purchases has increased markedly higher than say a few years back. People want to look at your website on the go, so you need to adapt your website to make the mobile-viewing experience smooth and seamless.

3. Is your charity’s donation page easy to understand and is it prominent?

The donation button should always be within one click away, so make it clearly visible on every page of your charity’s website.

4. Do you accept Apple Pay, Google Pay etc through your website?

You don't want people to spend too long fumbling around for their bank cards. This gives rise to obstacles such as not being able to find their bank card and giving up or allowing time for them to have second thoughts. Enabling payment via Apple/Google Pay through your website removes these hurdles, making it significantly easier for someone to make a quick donation.

5. Is your donation page both mobile and desktop-friendly?

As previously highlighted, more and more people use their phones as their main devices to browse the web, so adapting your website for mobile is crucial. That said, desktop is still a preferred web-browsing method by many and so desktop should also be taken into account.

CAF conducts monthly research into charitable giving by surveying thousands of individuals and then calculating estimates for the overall population. CAF’s report is based on polling of 13,500 adults conducted by YouGov.

If you have any further enquiries on how to boost your charity's success, don't hesitate to email me at or click here to get in touch.

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