What Tools do Fundraising Managers Use?

Learn the core tools, software, and programs that Fundraising Managers use in their day-to-day role

Introduction to Fundraising Manager Tools

In the strategic realm of fundraising management, the arsenal of tools and software at one's disposal is not merely a luxury; it is the backbone of a successful campaign. These digital allies, ranging from donor databases to communication platforms, are pivotal in weaving the complex tapestry of donor relations and campaign strategies. They not only streamline the intricate processes of fundraising but also empower Fundraising Managers with the ability to make informed decisions, track progress in real-time, and maximize the impact of each campaign. For those at the helm of nonprofit growth, proficiency in these tools is synonymous with the ability to elevate their mission and reach their financial goals with precision and flair. Understanding and leveraging these tools is equally critical for those aspiring to carve out a career in fundraising management. A solid grasp of the technological landscape prepares future Fundraising Managers with the skills necessary to thrive in an increasingly digital fundraising environment. It showcases to potential employers a candidate's commitment to efficiency and their potential to innovate in the pursuit of philanthropic success. For both seasoned professionals and newcomers to the field, an intimate knowledge of fundraising tools and software is the cornerstone of a career marked by achievement and advancement in the noble quest of garnering support for transformative causes.

Understanding the Fundraising Manager's Toolbox

In the multifaceted role of a Fundraising Manager, leveraging the right set of tools and software is crucial for achieving fundraising goals and driving organizational success. These tools not only enhance the efficiency of fundraising campaigns but also enable managers to make informed decisions, foster team collaboration, and manage donor relationships effectively. The technological landscape for Fundraising Managers is rich with platforms designed to optimize various aspects of their work. From donor management to event planning, the right tools can streamline operations, improve engagement, and ultimately increase the impact of fundraising efforts. In this section, we will explore the essential categories of tools that are integral to the Fundraising Manager's role, along with examples of popular tools within each category.

Fundraising Manager Tools List

Donor Management and CRM

Donor management and CRM tools are the backbone of any fundraising operation. They help Fundraising Managers track donor interactions, manage donations, and segment donors for targeted campaigns. These tools are essential for maintaining strong relationships with supporters and for analyzing donor data to inform future strategies.

Popular Tools

Blackbaud Raiser's Edge NXT

A comprehensive cloud-based solution that offers donor management, fundraising, and analytics capabilities tailored for nonprofits.

Salesforce Nonprofit Success Pack

A customizable CRM platform that provides a 360-degree view of your donors, supports fundraising efforts, and fosters donor engagement.


Focuses on donor retention with features like engagement tracking, reporting, and integrated email marketing to nurture donor relationships.

Online Fundraising Platforms

Online fundraising platforms enable Fundraising Managers to create and manage digital campaigns, process donations, and engage with donors online. These platforms are critical for expanding the reach of fundraising efforts and providing convenient donation options for supporters.

Popular Tools


Offers a suite of online fundraising tools, including peer-to-peer fundraising, event registration, and customizable donation pages.

GoFundMe Charity

A social fundraising platform that allows nonprofits to set up campaigns quickly and leverage social sharing to boost donations.

Give Lively

A donor-centric platform providing free fundraising technology, including text-to-donate and campaign pages, to nonprofit organizations.

Event Planning and Management

Event planning and management tools are vital for organizing successful fundraising events. These tools assist with ticketing, registration, auctions, and overall event coordination, ensuring a seamless experience for both organizers and attendees.

Popular Tools


A versatile platform for event planning and ticket sales, suitable for a range of fundraising events from small workshops to large galas.


Specializes in fundraising event management, offering solutions for auctions, mobile bidding, and event fundraising campaigns.


Provides a comprehensive event management platform with features for venue sourcing, attendee engagement, and performance analytics.

Email Marketing and Communication

Email marketing and communication tools help Fundraising Managers craft and distribute compelling messages, newsletters, and campaign updates to their donor base. These tools are essential for keeping supporters informed and engaged with the organization's mission and needs.

Popular Tools


An all-in-one marketing platform that allows for the creation of email campaigns, automation, and performance tracking to engage donors effectively.

Constant Contact

Offers email marketing services with customizable templates and reporting features to optimize communication with supporters.


A marketing communication platform that combines email campaigns, SMS messages, and CRM functionalities to enhance donor outreach.

Payment Processing and Financial Management

Payment processing and financial management tools are critical for handling donations securely and efficiently. These tools ensure that transactions are processed smoothly and that financial records are accurate and compliant with regulatory standards.

Popular Tools


A payment processing system that integrates with various fundraising platforms, offering secure and flexible payment options for donors.

PayPal for Nonprofits

Provides donation processing services tailored for nonprofit organizations, allowing for easy integration with websites and fundraising campaigns.

QuickBooks Nonprofit

A financial management tool designed for nonprofits, offering features for tracking donations, budgeting, and financial reporting.

Data Analysis and Reporting

Data analysis and reporting tools empower Fundraising Managers to interpret campaign data, track performance metrics, and generate reports that inform strategic decisions. These tools are indispensable for understanding donor behavior and measuring the impact of fundraising activities.

Popular Tools

Google Analytics

An analytics service that helps track website traffic and user behavior, providing insights into how donors interact with online fundraising campaigns.


A data visualization tool that assists in analyzing fundraising data and creating interactive, insightful reports for stakeholders.

Qlik Sense

Offers intuitive data analytics and visualization capabilities, enabling Fundraising Managers to explore complex data and uncover actionable insights.
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Learning and Mastering Fundraising Manager Tools

As Fundraising Managers, mastering the tools and software that facilitate your work is not just about knowing what buttons to press. It's about understanding how these tools can optimize your fundraising strategies, enhance donor relationships, and streamline your operations. The right approach to learning these tools involves a mix of strategic thinking, hands-on practice, and continuous education to ensure you are leveraging technology to its fullest potential. Here's how you can embark on this journey of learning and mastering the essential tools and software for your role.

Establish a Strategic Learning Plan

Before diving into the functionalities of various fundraising tools, develop a strategic learning plan. Identify the key areas of your fundraising process that can benefit from automation or enhanced analytics. Prioritize learning tools that align with these areas. Set clear goals for what you want to achieve with each tool and outline a timeline for your learning process.

Immerse Yourself in Hands-on Experience

Theory can only take you so far. To truly master fundraising tools, you need to get your hands dirty. Start with trial versions of software to explore their features. Create mock campaigns to practice different scenarios and understand the nuances of each tool. This hands-on approach will help you gain practical insights that are not always evident in tutorials or guides.

Participate in User Communities and Networks

Join forums, user groups, and online communities related to fundraising tools. These platforms are invaluable for exchanging knowledge, learning from the experiences of peers, and discovering innovative ways to use the tools. Networking with other professionals can also lead to collaborative learning opportunities and mentorship.

Utilize Official Training Resources

Make the most of the official training resources provided by the software vendors. These include webinars, how-to guides, and detailed documentation that are tailored to help users understand the product. These materials are often created by the experts who know the tools inside out, providing you with reliable and comprehensive learning content.

Invest in Professional Development

Consider enrolling in certified courses or workshops that focus on fundraising technology and software. These structured educational programs can deepen your understanding of complex features and strategic uses of the tools. Certifications from these courses can also enhance your credibility and showcase your commitment to professional growth.

Commit to Ongoing Education

The landscape of fundraising technology is constantly evolving, with new tools and updates being released regularly. Stay committed to ongoing education by subscribing to industry newsletters, attending webinars, and following thought leaders in the fundraising tech space. This will help you keep abreast of the latest trends and maintain a competitive edge.

Teach Others and Solicit Feedback

As you advance in your expertise, share your knowledge with colleagues and seek their input on how you use the tools. Conducting training sessions or writing about your experiences can solidify your understanding and reveal areas for improvement. Feedback from peers can provide fresh perspectives and help you refine your approach to using these tools effectively. By following these steps, you'll not only learn how to operate fundraising tools and software but also how to strategically apply them to amplify your fundraising efforts. Remember, mastering these tools is an ongoing process that requires curiosity, adaptability, and a willingness to embrace new technologies as they emerge.

Tool FAQs for Fundraising Managers

How do I choose the right tools from the vast options available?

Choosing the right tools as a Fundraising Manager involves assessing your campaign goals, donor engagement strategies, and data management needs. Prioritize platforms that offer robust donor tracking, campaign analytics, and seamless integration with communication channels. Seek peer recommendations and opt for tools with strong support and training resources. Focus on solutions that are widely adopted in the nonprofit sector to ensure they align with industry standards and best practices.

Are there any cost-effective tools for startups and individual Fundraising Managers?

For Fundraising Managers, swiftly mastering new tools is key to nurturing donor relationships and streamlining campaigns. Prioritize learning features that bolster donor engagement and analytics. Utilize interactive webinars, sector-specific workshops, and platforms like Udemy for targeted learning. Engage with professional networks on LinkedIn to exchange practical tips. Apply these tools in pilot fundraising initiatives to gain hands-on experience, ensuring you can leverage their full potential to drive your organization's fundraising efforts forward.

Can mastering certain tools significantly enhance my career prospects as a Fundraising Manager?

Fundraising Managers can stay current by joining professional associations, such as the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP), which offer resources and training on the latest fundraising tools and trends. Regularly attending industry-specific workshops, webinars, and conferences is also crucial. Engaging with online communities and forums focused on nonprofit technology can provide valuable insights and peer reviews of emerging software. Additionally, following thought leaders and subscribing to fundraising technology blogs can help managers identify and leverage new opportunities.
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