The 5 different methods of giving every church should offer
Everyone would agree that church giving has changed over the past decade. With the technological advances, economic ups and downs, and changes in what motivates a younger generation to give, churches have had to rethink and readjust their strategy for cultivating a culture of generosity in their communities.
In 1990, churches only had a few methods for their church members to give their tithes and offerings. Today, it seems like the methods are limitless. While some churches still use “traditional” methods for taking up tithes and offerings, others have moved solely to digital giving. Some of the most common questions we receive from churches are:
- Should we offer a new way for people to give?
- Should we focus more on one method of giving over another?
While some churches have stuck to the methods that have worked for the past 40 years and others are adopting newer methods of giving, the truth is that your church should offer multiple ways for people to give. Why? No one method of giving works for everyone in your church.
If your church wants to maximize its potential for cultivating generosity in every church member, here are the five different methods of giving you should offer:
1. Offering Envelopes. Some churches have given up on this traditional method of giving. However, for some people, physically placing an offering in a plate or bucket each week is a part of the worship experience. One idea for increasing your giving through offering envelopes is to subscribe to an offering envelope monthly mailing program. Most churches distribute envelopes quarterly or annually and hope this inspires members to think regularly about giving. However, if those envelopes arrived in the mail on a monthly basis, that thought will occur much more often.
2. Electronic Funds Transfers. Allowing people to sign up to have their offerings withdrawn weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly from one of their financial accounts is another essential method to offer. There are people within your church who want to give on a regular basis. Giving them the ability to have their tithes and offerings transferred electronically will give them that option and can also help your church project and forecast its budget.
3. Online Giving. The software you use to maintain your financial records should include the option of online giving. People want to give when they are paying their bills and want to do so in the same way they pay their bills. More and more people are using online bill payment, so why not allow them to give online as well? As your church utilizes online giving, it’s also important to not forget the single most important key when offering online giving.
4. Giving Kiosks. Giving kiosks are here to stay, and their use will continue to grow in the digital age and our increasingly cashless society. As technology has advanced, giving kiosks are more simple and affordable than ever, allowing churches of just about any size to find an option that is right for them.
5. Mobile Giving. Today, one in seven people on the earth have a smartphone. By offering mobile giving through a mobile-friendly website or custom-built app, your church has an unprecedented opportunity to unleash generosity through technology and make what people want to do, easier and more compelling.
How many of these giving methods does your church offer? What additional benefits have you seen in utilizing multiple channels?