4.13 Credit Card Processing Fees

Dear Kim:

I know you advise being able to accept donations by credit card, but given that the credit card company charge 3% or more, isn’t it better to have the donor write a check or give cash?

~Hate that percentage

Dear Percentage:

If a donor stands in front of you, offering an amount of money and asks if you want it in cash, as a check or as a credit card, then of course you would take the cash or a check.  However, the reason you should accept credit cards is that for many donors, it is either take a credit card or don’t receive a gift.  Your unwillingness to pay 3% means you are getting nothing from those people (and their number is increasing) who do all their transactions on-line with credit or debit cards.   What you need to think is this, “When we accept credit card donations, our organization has 97% of a gift we wouldn’t have gotten at all.”

Further, the amount a person will give on a credit card is often more than they would have given in cash or by check.  You are missing a lot of money to save very little money.

Get with the modern world.  Let your donors pay in the way that is most convenient for them.

~Kim Klein