You may have heard about embedded GIVE buttons and giving forms (versus those that are simply placed on your church website). But the concept may leave you with questions:
What’s different about embedded GIVE buttons?
How can you tell if your GIVE buttons are embedded?
And if a giving form “lives” on a church’s website, does it matter how it does so?
These are great questions because the mechanics behind your GIVE button do matter! Not all GIVE buttons are created equal.
How are embedded GIVE buttons different?
All online giving forms are incorporated into your website to some degree. Sometimes called embeddable widgets, these snippets of code are easily inserted into your website’s HTML to create a form that can transact online gifts.
But not every widget or donate button claiming to be ”embedded” really is. Embedded GIVE buttons and forms operate differently. How can you tell which is which? You shall know them by their fruit.
Embedded widgets allow the gift experience to:
Look and feel just like your church website
Most giving platform vendors do their best to match their giving form to the church’s website in a few key areas such as colors and your logo. But it’s usually still obvious to those who click through to the giving form that they’re not in Kansas anymore.
A true embedded solution allows the entire giving page to be built with rich content, according to the church website’s styles (exact fonts, colors, and more). Your church’s giving page will look nothing like another church’s.
This matching look and feel reassures givers that they are in the right place, which subconsciously calms their anxiety about the security of their transaction.
Help the giving experience feel secure
With most platforms, when givers click on the GIVE button, they are whisked away to another organization’s website to complete their gift. When this happens, they wonder … Where am I? Should I trust this new site?
Entering their payment information on this unfamiliar site creates doubt about the security of their transaction. What should have been a meaningful connection instead erodes trust in the experience. No online shopping site could be successful with this tactic.
The giver’s relationship with the church is an intimate one. So it’s no surprise that this confusing and trust-breaking practice accounts for 29% of total gift abandonment on charitable websites. It literally scares some givers away.
In contrast, embedded Give buttons, such as those created by Vision2, enable the entire donation experience—from browsing rich descriptions of giving opportunities to setting up recurring giving schedules—to be completed seamlessly on the church’s own website. The giver is never even aware that a third party is facilitating the transaction behind the scenes as a silent but trustworthy partner.
This is, in fact, one of the easiest ways to detect whether your GIVE button is embedded or not: After clicking the button, simply look at the URL of the giving form. If the address contains another organization’s name beside your church’s, it is not embedded.
Embedded GIVE Buttons and Forms ELEVATE The Church’s Mission, Not The Vendor
Some people think that if a GIVE button transacts gifts, it’s doing what it was intended to do – so who cares if it is embedded or not?
It all depends on your focus. Online giving is worship, not billpay. Embedding the giving form is how we make sure it feels that way.
In addition to the issues mentioned above, unembedded giving experiences elevate the third-party vendor, not the church and its mission. Turns out, this is another easy way to know if your GIVE button is embedded:
The vendor’s branding visible on the church’s website and on the giving form itself
Regarding thank you acknowledgements, your church does not get the last word with YOUR giver? (Hint: If the form is not embedded, it’s the vendor’s “receipt,” branding and legalese that get the last word.)