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The latest trends in contactless donations

Updated: Nov 18, 2021



The use of contactless transactions is soaring across the UK, as charities increasingly ditch paper money.

This simple act of tapping a card on a machine is fast becoming the go-to method of cashless payment, particularly for those looking to donate to charities.

While contactless devices were already becoming commonplace in charity shops and public fundraising, as a vital replacement for the traditional charity tin, the trend has been accelerated by the COVID-19 pandemic, and the need to reduce the spread of infection through handling cash.

As society recovers, it is a trend that looks set to rise even further.

Here we look at some of the latest evidence of the growth in contactless donating, and some of the innovative ways charities are benefitting.

Record contactless donations

Latest figures from Goodbox, which supplies contactless technology to the non-profit sector, found that the number of individual contactless donations increased from 32,000 in May 2019 to 78,000 in May 2021.

Not only does this represent a doubling of contactless donations over the last two years, but May 2021 was a record month for Goodbox. The previous monthly record was 70,000 in December 2020, as charities benefitted from a pre-Christmas boost in giving, as well as a break in COVID-19 lockdowns.

“It is amazing to see the generosity of the UK public, especially during such a difficult economic period, and we are delighted to see so many of charity partners benefitting from this,” said Goodbox co-founder and managing director Francesca Hodgson. “Our team has worked tirelessly to ensure that charities have access to our innovative tools to help them access new donors and raise funds without having to rely on just cash donations and these new milestones show just how impactful and important our solutions are.”

Shop window giving

One successful way charities are encouraging supporters to donate through contactless is to install devices in shop windows, where shoppers can give money as they walk by. These can be in a charity’s own shops as well as through linking up with local businesses.

Among charities benefitting is Greater Manchester Mayor’s Charity. Goodbox’s Tap to Donate devices are installed at shops across the city, inviting shoppers to “tap and give £3” to good causes it is supporting.

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