I have been to connected to Causes on Facebook for a long time, donating to friends causes and for the last two years doing Birthday Wishes through them. I've been a fan of gift cards for quite a while, I like giving something that the recipient can choose how to use. I recently received a gift card from Causes and had a great experience around using it.

FBCausesJKAvailable in $25 and $50 amounts, much like an iTunes gift card, you scratch off a covering to reveal a number that you then redeem via the website. They allow the recipient to choose from over 1.5 million nonprofits.

What really impressed me positively was the whole experience surrounding using the card. The easy to use and well constucted web site was the beginnning of the great experience. The redemption page is uncluttered and has links to help if you have problems with your card. Once I entered my number and signed in via Facebook, I was taken to the donation page, which really impressed me.

Causes friends projectsOn the left side of the page is a place to search nonprofits by name or by category. What I thought was cool was that I could also browse projects by those that were cloe to their goal, my friends projects, most urgent (campaigns ending soon) and those recently updated.

Here you see a screenshot of my friends projects. As we know, people are more likely to give to a cause their friends recommend than they hear about from a stranger. I enjoyed browsing through my friends causes and reading about the projects they support. It not only gave me a bit of new insight as to what was important to my friends but introduced me to several nonprofits I had not heard of before, setting me up to be a bit more likely to give to them in the future.

I have friends who recieve services from a nonprofit in Sonoma County called Food for Thought, so I searched for it and it came up immediately. I was able to choose to have my donation go there and then asked if I wanted to share it on Facebook, which I did.

FBGiftCardFFT A few days later I recevied an email from Causes asking about my experience and about the ease of use of the website.

I thought this was an excellent example of having a conversation with users and getting their feedback to improve your site, which I recommend for all nonprofits.

  Category: Nonprofit Web Presence, Social Media/Web 2.0, Web/Tech


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