Create a donation page

This guide is for the Donation (v2) page which uses NationBuilder's integrated payment processing to accept one-time or recurring donations.

Updated over a week ago

📌 Note: Memberships are available as add-ons. Additionally, NationBuilder Payments rates differ per plan. For more information on adding new features please see the add-ons page in your nation.

Where to start

A donation page is a fundamental tool for almost any organization to process credit card donations from a website. NationBuilder donation pages are flexible for your needs and can act as a simple donate page, a paid membership signup page, or a payment page to purchase items such as tickets. You can create as many donation pages as you need to reach your goals and track fundraising efforts.

You can configure a donation page to exclusively accept one-time or monthly payments, or offer both to the donor.

If you are using a third-party payment processor, you must set up the old version of this page

If your website has a custom theme, be sure to update your theme before you create your first Donation (v2) page. 

Donation (v2) pages will not function correctly if you are using a deprecated Version 1 theme (or a custom theme built off of a Version 1 theme).

Steps before you set up your donation page

Before you start accepting your first donations, you’ll need to confirm that donation features are enabled in your nation and that you’ve set up payment processing.

1. Enable donation features in your nation. Under Settings > Defaults > Basics, check the box next to "Enable donations."

📌 Note: Enterprise nations may not have these add ons visible. Reach out to [email protected] if you suspect that they were deselected during install.

2. Set the currency for your nation from the dropdown menu on the left side of the page.

3. Click the Save settings button at the bottom of the page.
Set up payment processing at Settings > Payment processors > New processor.

Payment processor settings

Several payment processor settings will affect how donors interact with your donation page. First, decide whether the donations are tax-deductible. This status will appear on the donation page and on donation receipts.

You may require a donor’s employer and occupation information, the employer’s full address, or just the employer’s city and state. You may also include corporate contribution fields. If you are a political campaign, check your local and Federal regulations to see if you are required to collect this information.

Activate any settings by checking the appropriate text box.

If your organization has a specific disclaimer or contribution rules required to accept donations, enter that copy in the "Contribution rules" text box. This includes specific disclaimers mandated by campaign finance law. Donors will have to check a box accepting these statements before submitting a donation. 

A donation page that is connected to this payment processor will pull from these fields for the donation page.

Create a donation page/basic settings

Create a new page by navigating to Website > [Site name] > + New page.  

1. Enter the name of the page and slug.

2. Select the Donation (v2) page type.

📌 Note: We display the eight most used page types for your nation based on your settings and add-ons. To see all available pages simply click on 'Show all page types'.

3. Select the checkbox to include the page in top nav or supporter nav.

4. Click Create Page at the bottom.

You will be directed to Donation settings > Basics.

Within this section, you can select what payment processor you would like to connect to your donation page from the Payment processor dropdown menu.

You will also select what kinds of donations you would like to accept from this section:

  • One-time only

  • Monthly recurring only

  • Annual recurring only

  • or both one-time and recurring

Recurring donations/payments - a.k.a. annual/monthly donation plans, or sustaining donations -- allow donors to give a set amount of money every month or year for an unlimited amount of time (or until they change credit cards).

The Enable express payment options checkbox will control whether or not donors can contribute using Apple Pay, Google Pay, or browser-saved payment methods on this page.

If you leave “Accept multiple amounts” enabled, you can set what default amounts display on your page. Do not add dollar signs or other monetary symbols. An “other” option will be available in addition to these values where the donor can set a custom amount. If you use this page to sell tickets, it will only display the value of the ticket the user has selected to purchase, regardless of this setting.

You can also have an amount to be pre-selected when a visitor navigates to your Donation page. For instance, if you want to drive people to donate 100, you can type that number into the "Highlighted donation amount" so that it is anchored when people come to the page. See below:

With any change, remember to click Save settings at the bottom of your page.

The "Require phone number" checkbox will determine whether or not the donation form enforces entry of a phone number.

Advanced settings

If you have opted to allow your page to process both one-time and recurring donations, this section will be split into two parts. This will allow you to set distinct settings based on the type of donation that is being processed.

The first setting in this section determines the tracking code. This code can be used later to isolate donation that were associated with a particular fundraising campaign or event. Any given donation can only have one tracking code. To select a tracking code, make a choice from the dropdown menu(s).

To create a new code click on the blue here. You will be directed to Finances > Tracking codes where you can add a new one.

You can also select where you would like a person to be directed after donating by entering the slug of the page in the “After donating, what page should they land on next?” For example, in the image below, the donor will be directed to the volunteer page.

Like other NationBuilder pages, you can also add the donor to a path, assign a membership, and add tags to any person who uses this page to donate. Note that you will only be able to assign a membership expiration date for one-time donations. You may also assign a point person to the donor, if a point person does not already exist for that person’s profile. These tools will allow you to track and engage your donors in the future.

Add content to your donation page

NationBuilder donation pages include an ‘Intro’ section where you can post a personal appeal. To customize that text, go to Donation settings > Intro. To add an image to the section, click on the image button. It's a free-form text field, so you have a lot of flexibility.

Donation pages, like other forms on the web, convert best when they include high-quality images. NationBuilder donation pages allow you to upload a background image specific to that page. To upload an image of up to 2MB in size for your donation page, navigate to the page in your control panel and go to Settings > Background image. Each NationBuilder public theme has different recommended sizes for background images, so make sure to optimize the size of your image for maximum effect.

If you need to add a custom disclaimer that you want people to check off before donating, you can add one in your payment processor settings.

Autoresponse donation receipt

A receipt is sent to your donor as part of the autoresponse email. By default, the receipt looks like this:

You can edit the donation receipt at Donation settings > Autoresponse. If your page accepts recurring donations, this is where you will set whether or not the donor receives an email for every monthly donation, or only the first donation in the series. You can select whether or not to automatically send this email by clicking the checkbox next to "Automatically send donors an email."

An uncustomized PDF version of a donor’s receipt can also be accessed on their personal profile.

Ticketed events

Selling tickets to an event will require setting up a ticket purchasing page. We recommend that it be a different page than your regular donation processing pages.

To avoid confusion, we also suggest that you exclude it from the top and supporter navs of your website. Confirm this configuration under Settings > Page settings:

Donation pages default to accept one-time and recurring donations. To use this page as a ticketing page, you will want to make sure the “one-time only” radio button is selected instead.

Assuming this page is used exclusively for ticketing, you can safely ignore the ‘Accept multiple amounts’ option, as the page will only ever display the value of the ticket the user has selected to purchase.

We do not recommend enabling the social share prompt (configured under Settings > Social media) to appear when someone completes a ticket purchase. While sharing information about your event on Twitter and Facebook can increase attendance, prompting them from your donation page will take new visitors to the donation page directly - instead of your event. This means visitors will land directly on your “ticketing” page with all preset amounts available, rather than truly RSVPing. Their RSVP will not be recorded and they might contribute a random amount rather than the true cost of your ticket.

👉🏼 Next steps

Next, take a look at how to input a new donation.

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