Receiving online donations at your church

Online donations is a catch-all term for any method of donating via the internet (for contactless donations click here). As more and more of our churches grow their online presence, having the ability to accept donations online opens them up to a whole new community of people who want to support their local church. On this page we look at different ways to accept donations over the web; remember that these don’t all have to be independent of each other and you can reach more people by using more than one method. You may also want to take a look at the Parish Resources website which has some excellent ideas and case studies for how to integrate online donations into your church and a price comparison of various popular online donation providers. As well as the information on this page you may also want to look at our online donation video tutorials which cover a wide range of topics and which can be found here.

A Church Near You Logo

New Church of England Online Donations Service

A Church Near You (ACNY) has been working with GiveALittle to launch a brand new donations platform to make online giving available to all churches at the cheapest price on the market. Once you have registered for an account you can add a donation button to your ACNY profile and to your own church website. You can also share a donation link in your emails, on your social media (such as Facebook or Twitter) and during live-streamed services.

If you have a SumUp account you can register for GiveALittle straight away. If you don’t yet have a SumUp account you can set one up as part of the registration process. You can find out more and sign up via Parish Buying here. NB You must register for this new service through Parish Buying even if you already have SumUp otherwise you will not get the special Church of England rates.

ACNY donation page, customisable video and charitable certification

As well as the new donations platform you can also create a dedicated donations page on your ACNY profile and access the new customisable animated video which you can watch at the bottom of this page. Click here for a step-by-step guide to setting up a donations page on ACNY and adding your donation button.  See here for more information about customising the video.

Finally, you can now download a proof of charitable status certificate from ACNY. This is useful for any excepted churches which do not have a Charity Number. A video showing how to do this can be found here.

For many people, when they want to find out about anything, they will first check the internet. This means that having donation information on your website has become essential. Not only does it provide a way for people to donate, it also allows you to communicate the importance of giving to your community.

The simplest option is to provide your PCC bank details, preferably within a standing order form. This will allow people to make a one-off donation and/or sign-up to regular giving. If you choose to do this, don’t forget to include a downloadable Gift Aid declaration and details of how to submit it. Remember that, as long as you get the relevant information, a Gift Aid declaration form can be completed on a computer and emailed to you.

If you would prefer to provide the option to donate via a debit card and/or you’d prefer not to post your bank details online, you might want to use a third-party payments processor such as GiveALittle (see the section on A Church Near You). Some payments processors have the option to add a “Donate Now” button to your website but for those that don’t you can simply add a link in the text of your website so that people can click and donate.

JustGiving Donations

If you are running a specific fundraising project you might want to set up a fundraising page on a site such as JustGiving, CAF Donate, or GoFundMe (which can be run in conjunction with Paypal Giving Fund). Once you have set up a page you can then direct people to it through your website as well as any other communications such as pew sheets, emails, community flyers and notice boards. NB you don’t have to be running a specific project to use these services, you can set up a page which is simply for the church’s general fund.

When considering your different options you should first check out their pricing structure and then you might like to think about what capabilities they offer, for example:

  1. can they add a “Donate Now” button to your website?
  2. can they collect the information for and/or claim Gift Aid?
  3. can they set up regular giving (standing orders/Direct Debit)?
  4. can they accept one-off donations?

Parish Resources has written a list of most of the providers which list them by price and shows their different capabilities. You can read it here.

Many church management programs (such as ChurchSuite and ChurchDesk) and donations management programs (such as Lepton and MyGiving.Online) include online donations as part of their package so if you use a management app you may already be paying for the capability to accept donations online. To find out if this is the case you should speak to your provider.

Any questions?

Remember, if you have any questions about receiving donations online, the Generous Giving Adviser for the diocese, Joshua Townson, is on hand to provide you advice and support. You can contact him via email at or telephone on 01865 208 757.