How to Raise Money in Five Easy Steps

Group of people in front of a stage
| 4 min read Financial Assistance

If you’re wondering how to raise money quickly, consider crowdfunding as your solution. If you’ve never raised funds online before, the process may seem overwhelming. But if you follow these five simple steps you’ll have everything you need to start a fundraiser for yourself, a loved one, or your favourite cause.

Start a fundraiser

1. Define a goal

Start by determining how much money you need to raise—not just for yourself, but for your potential donors. People are more likely to give money to a cause that is clearly defined. For example, if you’re raising money for a medical procedure, don’t list just the big-ticket price of the procedure itself, but also related expenses such as lost income, rehab, medications, and medical devices.

2. Choose an online fundraising platform

When picking a platform you should look for:

  • Fees (both platform fees and payment processing fees)
  • Ease of use and website design
  • Customer support options
  • When you get access to your funds
  • Fundraiser sharing capabilities

We’re a little biased, but when it comes to crowdfunding platforms, GoFundMe is likely your best choice. Unlike other sites, we have a 0% platform fee, and you can start withdrawing funds as soon as you start receiving donations. To dive deeper into crowdfunding platform comparisons, see our blog post 21 Top Crowdfunding Sites: Pick the Right One for Your Needs.

3. Tell your story honestly

When writing your story try to answer basic questions any reader would have like:

  • Who
  • What
  • Where
  • When
  • Why
  • How

What will the funds be used for? How are you connected to the cause? How will the donations raised aid you or others? When it comes to fundraising, the why is particularly important—why does the recipient need this donation? Learn how to write a captivating fundraiser story with our guide.

Write a captivating title to match your story

Come up with a strong title after you’ve written your story. It will help you summarize your story in one standout phrase. It’s hard to overstate how important the title is. As with a book or movie, it can draw people in or turn them away (before they know anything else). Check out some great ideas for naming your online fundraiser.

4. Create a strategy for sharing

Once you’ve posted your fundraiser, get feedback on it from trusted friends and family. Use any good suggestions to refine your story, images, etc. Then ask your inner circle for donations. Why? If potential donors see that some funds have already been raised, people are more likely to donate. Once your inner circle has donated, share your fundraiser with everyone everywhere.

Sharing on social media

The more visible your fundraiser is, the more donations you’ll receive. If you create a Facebook page for your fundraiser, consider paying to boost posts if the costs will be outweighed by donations. If you want to use email try using one of our email fundraising templates to help simplify the process.

Sharing without social media

While social media is a great way to connect potential donors with your fundraiser, there are other ways to share. If you want to know how to raise money online without using social media, consider trying one of our 42 ways to share your fundraiser offline like creating flyers for bulletin boards or learn how to get featured in the local media.

5. Show your donor’s appreciation

When people make a donation, think of it as the beginning of them caring about the cause, not the end. When seen this way, the thank-you is clearly the beginning of an ongoing relationship with the donor, a kind of gateway to remaining part of the story. Simple, personalized thank you letters are an easy way to show your appreciation and strengthen relationships with donors. For more ideas, check out 20 Affordable Ways to Thank Donors.

Free fundraising resources

For those wondering how to raise money on GoFundMe look no further. We offer a wide range of resources to help you double your donations. For more ways to raise money through crowdfunding, check out our fundraising tips, fundraising ideas, and many other guides on the GoFundMe blog.

Putting it all together

To raise money is to ask for help—but when done right, it can become less of a plea and more of a transformative experience for everyone involved. The beauty of crowdfunding is the act of people coming together to reach a common goal. Now that you know how to raise money online, start your fundraiser today.

Start your fundraiser

Written by caitlin