3 Ways To Make Money Online With Donations
January 9, 2008
Photography by annia316.
Why To Accept Donations
Maybe Adsense isn’t doing so well for you, or you can never seem to make enough with your affiliate sales. It might be time that you could start asking nicely for donations.
First of all, you might be wondering why anyone would want to give you something for free, and why you should even bother with trying. If you’re working hard on your site or blog, then someone out there might be compelled to help you out or reward you for that hard work. If you try your best to help your readers, then maybe one will come along that wants to help you in return. And besides, setting up a donation button or page takes a couple minutes of your time. It never hurts to try, and you never know – you might turn on the computer one day and have a nice surprise waiting for you!
If you add a little donation area in your sidebar, or a small page dedicated to the purpose, someone might donate to you because they like your cause and they appreciate what you do. Don’t push the donations – instead, use one of the following sites or widgets to help you out:
“Collect donations from a button on your website, or even using a link in an email! PayPal Donations is a low cost way for you to accept credit card and bank account donations. Integrate PayPal Donations with your website in a few easy steps.”
PayPal is very easy to use on your site to generate donations. All you have to do is insert of a snippet of code to create a little donation button and you’re ready to go. Some good things about PayPal include the fact that donation payments are handled with your account like any other transactions (so PayPal doesn’t take a huge cut of your money), and PayPal is also a universally accepted way to transfer money – your visitors will feel at ease using it.
“ChipIn is a Web-based service that simplifies the process of collecting money from groups of people. We make this process quick, easy, and secure, and we provide organizers with numerous ways to get the word out about their ChipIn event.”
I really like ChipIn. Basically they allow you to sign up and create a widget, and you can also set a goal for how much money you’d like to earn. Then, as people donate, this widget visually tracks your progress to that goal. Best of all, ChipIn uses your PayPal address to collect your earnings for you, so it’s easy to use and easy to trust as well. If you’re going for a certain monetary goal or want a cool-looking widget, then ChipIn is what you want to use.
“ScratchBack is an online ‘tipping’ system (or as we like to call it, a fancy-schmancy tip jar). It allows you, the blogger, to accept tips and ‘give back’ links or images in return on your blog.”
ScratchBack is the newest way to accept donations, and it’s probably the best idea so far. You need absolutely no skills to set it up; all you have to do is insert the code where you want the widget to show up. Then your readers can buy links off your ScratchBack widget as a way to thank you for your hard work (these links are nofollow, so Google WILL NOT penalize you for them). You can set whatever price you like, and even though ScratchBack takes a small cut of the earnings, they deserve it. This is the one that will earn you the most because your readers will be more likely to donate since they get something back in return.
How To Accept Donations
Readers always like getting something back in return, especially if they’re thinking about helping you out and donating to you. But if you’d like to take it a step past ScratchBack, where the donators get temporary exposure on your blog, then you might want to consider making a donation page.
You can create a donation page in so many ways. You can accept money via PayPal or even use ChipIn to keep a running total for you. At the top of the page you can display the total money you’ve acquired from all the donations, and then after that you can give a permanent link to everyone who has donated, in order from greatest to least on how much they have given (and showing that number as well). You’d be surprised at how some people will donate in order to just get a link on your blog or to be included in the list!
However you decide to do it, donations can be a nice way to make money online – and it can be nice for both parties, not just for you, if you’re willing to take a little time to thank and give back to those who help you out.