Who doesn’t love the ability to get free money for their nonprofit? I am not talking about grants, but I am speaking of brands and corporations that offer matching gifts.

Nipsey Hussle said it best, “Double up, three or four times I ain’t tellin’ no lies!”

Nipsey Hussle

This guide will take *nonprofit professionals through the basics of matching gifts, explain how to market these opportunities to your supporters, and then break down the best tools for boosting your organization’s matching gift program.

Specifically, we’ll be answering the following questions:

  1. What are matching gifts?
  2. How do matching gift programs work?
  3. What are the best matching gift software solutions available?

1. What are matching gifts?

Matching gifts are corporate giving programs that reward employees’ charitable donations. Basically, when an employee makes a donation to an eligible nonprofit, the employer will also match the donation to that organization.

Employers: Check out this all-in-one software built to streamline your corporate giving programs and maximize your philanthropic impact.

Though each company sets its own specifications, most matching gift programs will include the following components:

  • Minimums and maximums: This refers to the actual donation amount. If the minimum is $25, a $15 donation will not be matched. If the maximum is $500, but a donor gives $1,000, the company will match up to the maximum. This results in $1,500 for the organization, which is great news!
  • Match ratio: The match ratio defines how much a company will donate in relation to the original donation. If the ratio is 1:1, the company will give the exact same amount as their employee. If it’s 2:1, the company will give twice as much. 
  • Employee eligibility: Sometimes, the specifications of a match change based on the employee’s eligibility. A part-time employee may be eligible for a 1:1 match, while a CEO is eligible for 2:1, and a retiree is eligible for .5:1.
  • Nonprofit eligibility: Companies will occasionally clarify what types of nonprofits they will match donations to. For example, airlines commonly focus their corporate philanthropy efforts toward education-based organizations. 
  • Deadlines: It is crucial that your donors know when their matching gift requests are due. Deadlines are commonly scheduled around the end of the year and Tax Day in April. It is also common to see a deadline based on the initial donation date. For example, a donor might have three months after the initial donation is made to submit that matching gift request to their employer. 

Here’s the point: 65% of large companies in the U.S. match employee donations. Matching gifts can mean more money for your nonprofit without having to ask your supporters for more donations. 

2. How do matching gift programs work?

The process for matching gifts is simple and standardized. It can be broken down into four steps:

  1. Employee makes an initial donation
  2. Employee submits matching gift request to the employer
  3. Employer confirms the eligibility of donor, donation, and the nonprofit 
  4. Nonprofit receives a check!

The most common breakdown in this process, by far, is seen at step number two. Unfortunately, the nonprofit can not make the matching gift request; the donor has to do it.

The most effective action for a nonprofit to take is communicating with every potential donor about matching gifts. 

Employers: 84 percent of donors say they’re more likely to donate if a match is offered, and 1 in 3 say they would give a larger gift if matching is applied to their donation. In fact, matching their team’s charitable gifts is the, second of five top things an employer can do to motivate their colleagues and increase workplace giving/CSR program participation and results. Learn more.

3. What is the best matching software on the market?

Kadogo helps turn everyday purchases into charitable donations and makes it simple for anyone to donate their spare change, cashback rewards, stocks assets, and more to nonprofits through our Card  Linking As a Service (CLaaS) platform. Individuals simply set up their Kadogo giving accounts to begin making tax-deductible donations whenever and wherever they want. Kadogo’s easy-to-use digital fundraiser then generates donations everywhere nonprofit supporters shop.

Traditional “Workplace Giving & Give Day” campaigns are often limited in their effectiveness by manual coordination efforts: Nonprofits must set up unique deals with each retailer and/or workplace; promotional effectiveness, tracking, and validation of each facet of the campaign is manual and labor-intensive; the lack of technology to automate tasks like verifying purchases of eligible buyers/donors reduces engagement. With Kadogo, these processes are automated and streamlined, removing the manual steps that hinder nonprofits from working with multiple retailers, corporations or online retailers. Kadogo allows nonprofits to reduce staff time while increasing their donations and strategic partnership opportunities, merchants to benefit from more foot traffic and purchases, and workplaces to increase employee engagement and generate greater community impact.