Nonprofit Glossary

Like any other industry, the nonprofit industry can be full of jargon. So we’ve put this glossary together to define some of the terms you may have heard or read.

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Accounting for Nonprofits

Nonprofit accounting, or fundraising accounting, is essential to running a successful nonprofit organization. Read more for a nonprofit accounting overview, plus the top nonprofit accounting software solutions.

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Annual Reports for Nonprofits

Annual reports are an important part of any donor-organization relationship. Read more for an overview, annual report examples, and how to make your own.

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Board of Directors for Nonprofits

A nonprofit board of directors, or nonprofit board, leads organizations through important tasks and decisions. Read more for an overview, plus how to choose and recruit your nonprofit board members.

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Charitable Solicitation

Charitable solicitations, also known as fundraising or nonprofit solicitations, are essential for fundraisers to raise the money they need to run their organizations. Read more for an overview.

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Communication for Nonprofits

Nonprofit communication includes showing donors they are valued and sharing the organization’s mission with supporters. Read more for an overview.

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Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding is a term used to describe the process of an individual raising money on behalf of an organization by soliciting donations from their friends and peers.

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Donation Acknowledgment Letter

All donors deserve to be recognized, no matter the size of their gift. Use donor acknowledgement letters to show your gratitude and provide donors with important information they’ll need come tax season.

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Donation Button

Donation buttons make it easy for supporters to participate in online giving. Including a simple, eye-catching donation button on your nonprofit’s website and other virtual platforms is a great way to encourage people who are engaging with your content to support your cause.

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Donation Matching

Donation matching is an easy way for donors to double (or even triple) their contributions to an organization.

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Donation Page

A donation page is a location on a nonprofit’s website where people can go to give money to the organization.

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Donation Pledges

Pledges are a great way to secure consistent support over a prolonged period of time. Donors make pledges to show their deep connection to and support for an organization.

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Donation Receipt

Donation receipts contain valuable information donors will appreciate having once tax season arrives.

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Donor Acquisition

Donor acquisition is the process of bringing on new donors or potential donors to your organization via marketing and networking.

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Donor Communication

Donor communication is any activity in which a nonprofit communicates with donors, including both established donors and potential donors they hope to engage.

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Donor Lifecycle

The donor lifecycle describes the way that nonprofit organizations engage with and view their donors from the start of their relationship (when they first learn about your organization) to when they give and beyond.

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Donor Management Software

Donor management software is a platform that helps organizations understand and maximize their relationships with their donors. The software organizes donor data, identifies donor trends, and makes recommendations to increase the likelihood of receiving future donations.

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Donor Retention

Donor retention ensures that nonprofits don’t waste the hard effort it took to bring new donors to the organization and that financial capital continues to come into the organization.

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Donor Segmentation

Donor segmentation allows nonprofits to customize their donor communication and organize their donors based on different characteristics.

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Email Marketing for Nonprofits

Email marketing is an effective way for nonprofits to engage donors and promote online giving. Send emails to inform your audience about new initiatives they’ll find interesting or simply to stay in touch and show your appreciation for their recent donation. Reinforce your organization's mission and include a simple call to action to encourage online donations.

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Event Management for Nonprofits

Nonprofit event management incorporates everything nonprofits need to make sure their functions are successful.

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Fundraising Appeal

Fundraising appeals are a powerful way to compel supporters to give to a cause. Appeals should always speak to the audience’s emotions, remind them why the organization’s mission is important, and include a call to action.

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Fundraising Campaign

Fundraising campaigns reiterate the organization’s mission and help nonprofits connect with donors in a meaningful way that leads them to give.

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Fundraising Event

Fundraising events are a fun way to get your donor base more engaged with your organization and mission. From galas to silent auctions, the possibilities are endless when it comes to hosting a fundraising event.

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Giving Tuesday

Giving Tuesday is a day that encourages people to give back in whatever ways they can. It presents nonprofit organizations with the chance to raise even more money than they would on an average day of giving, which is why many organizations create special campaigns around Giving Tuesday.

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Grants for Nonprofits

A nonprofit grant is financial support given to nonprofits by corporations, foundations, or government agencies. They are beneficial for nonprofits because they provide the opportunity for additional funding that doesn't need to be paid back and increases awareness of their organization.

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Lapsed Donor

A lapsed donor is a donor who used to contribute to an organization but who has not donated within a specified amount of time. Usually, that time period is twelve months. However, some organizations consider a donor lapsed after two or three years.

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LYBUNT & SYBUNT Reports

LYBUNT and SYBUNT reports are instrumental in identifying lapsed donors. Once you know who has lapsed, you can begin to learn why they’ve stopped giving and ways to win them back.

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Major Gifts

Major gifts are the largest gifts an organization receives within a single year. Major gifts make up the bulk of a nonprofit’s revenue each year.

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Nonprofit CRM

A nonprofit CRM is a type of donor management software that helps organizations understand and maximize their relationships with donors. Read more for the value of investing in a CRM and which one is best for your organization.

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Nonprofit Database

Nonprofit databases are essential for organizations looking to thrive in the digital world. Databases make it easy for organizations to perform necessary functions like collecting donor information, accepting donations, and sending donor communications.

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Online Fundraising

Fundraising in the digital age requires the use of virtual tools and online fundraising. Nonprofits can use online resources to expand their reach, grow their donor base, and make giving more convenient for their supporters.

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Online Fundraising Software

Online fundraising software is designed to help organizations get the most out of their fundraising efforts.

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Payment Processing for Nonprofits

Payment processing, also known as credit card processing or an online payment system, is an essential part of any nonprofit. Providing donors with a secure, easy-to-use payment system will ensure their donation experience is a positive one.

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Peer-To-Peer Fundraising

Peer-to-peer fundraising, also referred to as social fundraising, involves individuals organizing personal campaigns to collect donations from their peers.

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Recurring Giving

Recurring giving is when a donor elects to make a regular, ongoing donation to your organization instead of choosing to make a one-time gift.

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Silent Auction

Silent auctions are a fun, effective way to fundraise. With some planning and attention to detail, nonprofits can host an event that is both enjoyable and lucrative.

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Text-To-Give

Text-to-give campaigns make it easy for you to meet donors where they are—on their cell phones—and raise money in minutes via text message.

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Volunteer Management

Good volunteer management is essential for any nonprofit organization. Recruit and retain valuable volunteers by crafting a volunteer management plan that includes an effective volunteer management system.

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Wealth Screening

Gaining insights on a donor’s assets reduces time spent cultivating less promising targets and provides valuable information, including how much a donor might be able to give to an organization.

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Year-End Giving Letter

Donors love contributing to meaningful initiatives--especially around the holidays at the end of the year. Sending a year-end giving letter can encourage them to support your organization.

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