Kewl Site Alert: Razoo Facilitates Online Fundraising For Non-Profits

Razoo logo
On Saturday, I'll be speaking at Social Capital Ottawa (or @SoCapOtt) about Social Media for Non-Profits (sneak preview here). I've been doing volunteer work pretty much my whole life (thanks, mom and dad :) and have done some non-profit pro bono work over the past few years as well. One particular organization I've worked with is a very small outfit that relies exclusively on a single fundraising event per year to raise funds, but that could benefit from a more year-round approach. Lack of resources has kept them from significantly investing in their online efforts including fundraising.

As a fan of Kiva, I think online fundraising (and other forms of slacktivism) are the most efficient ways to solicit help from the greater population. Which is why Razoo piqued my interest. Razoo is an online fundraising site for non-profits. It's so simple and makes so much sense (which is probably why they've raised $98M for non-profits during their lifetime). It's as easy as setting up a shopping cart: register, validate, set up page and promote. Fundraising can be done via a website, Facebook or even mobile.

Boom. Game changer.

Non-profits, especially the really small ones, often don't have the staff (or even volunteers) to set themselves up for this kind of giving. Many have trouble finding people willing to help out for short stints, let alone regularly to help manage a store front or other mechanism for online transactions. (Case-in-point: after I completed my pro bono project, I couldn't find a developer (or two) willing to give 5-10 days of their time to set up the site I architected, allowing the non-profit to implement the content strategy I spent 6 months writing for them. It's still sitting on a shelf almost 2 years later :(

So the idea of a plug-and-play system, requiring minimal effort and technical knowledge levels the playing field for even the smallest of charities. Razoo does have a cost (3% of transactions, in order to offset the credit card costs) but if you've ever worked retail, you'll know that's the merchant fee for most credit cards. They also have a great blog with helpful tips for fundraising and promotion.

I love this idea. And if I can figure out how to get the site built for my pro bono project, you bet I'll be suggesting that they take a close look at something like Razoo to help them fundraise all year, instead of waiting for that Spring event.

Have you tried Razoo or other online fundraising sites? Any others you would recommend?