Do you pay bills on line? I know that our household pays almost all of our bills online…even my 87 year old father does as well. Although I do not see my tithes and offerings as “bills” I pay them online the majority of the time. I am also aware that more and more churches are offering online giving and even text giving options, which got me thinking about the means and methods of online giving.
What should the online giving experience look like?
What giving technologies are most efficient and effective?
How can churches afford to employ new giving technologies?
How do we reach every generation of givers in the church?
Church leaders across the country are asking themselves and their pastor friends these questions, especially as they try to accelerate generosity and be intentional with the facilities (and all resources…including money) God has entrusted to them.
I recently learned of a new resource that can help you answer these questions in a very practical way. So I arranged some valuable Q&A time with Rusty Lewis, CFRE and Vice President of Generis, a group growing generous hearts toward God-inspired vision. He authored an eBook called “Leveraging Technology to Accelerate Giving,” and I got a chance to get the inside details of the book to share with you (You can get your copy of this resource for free, by the way!).
Take a minute and sit in on our conversation:
Tim: Why was it important for you to address giving technology in this new resource?
Rusty: With online banking and smartphone mobile pay apps, we simply aren’t carrying cash and checks like we used to. And that means we’re not carrying them to church services either. But many churches operate as if we do. When alternative giving methods are not being implemented, a chasm is created and giving is lost.
When a church doesn’t offer an alternative way to give, they have actually created an obstacle in someone’s way of giving to the church. Giving should be easy. And honestly, people have already gone mobile – with or without you. If pastors would address and improve their eGiving options, they would likely have an impact on giving for years to come.
Tim: What specifically did you choose to address in the eBook?
Rusty: Several years ago the call was to implement online giving, and today, many churches have done just that (though not nearly as many as you might think). Mistakenly, however, most assume that now they have online giving on their website they’ve done all they need to do in this area. That’s simply not the case.
So I’ve addressed three specific areas in the eBook:
- Implementing all the tools that make up a complete electronic giving platform – and how they should perform.
- How best to promote your electronic giving platform – now that we have the tools in place, how can we get more people to use them?
- Appropriately stewarding the gifts that come in electronically – specifically, what happens when the gift is received – how do you say “thank you” and connect the dots between the gift and the ministry impact the gift allows?
Tim: What are you seeing in terms of generational eGiving?
Rusty: Younger generations have smartphones by their side day and night. The common perception that young adults love their smartphones has become a statistical fact. And these are the future givers of the church.
Here’s a sneak peek into a study referenced in my eBook… in the chapter on Millennials and technology:
This information alone is a strong case for eGiving! Ultimately it’s the church’s responsibility to meet people where they are and encourage them on their giving journey.
Tim: What other technology-related topics are covered in this resource?
Rusty: The bulk of the eBook actually gets pretty practical. Once you download it you’ll quickly find:
- resolution to some common giving technology myths
- teaching on how to reach Millennials (the future givers of your church)
- guidance on how to remove the hurdles of online giving
- examples of the ideal online giving experience
- recommendations on giving technology to consider
- a self-analysis to help you understand your current position in the realm of giving technology
I even talk one-on-one with the providers of this technology for you. That’s just how important this is!
Tim: What kinds of practical tools do you offer in this new eBook?
Rusty: There are several very practical sections to this book. One of my favorites is a self-analysis. I’ve included step-by-step instructions on how to assess your current eGiving system and experience, complete with suggestions for improvement.
POSTLUDE (Tim): For far too many years, the church has been 10-15 years behind the technological trends of culture not to mention other means and methods. It is exciting for me to find resources that can help the church be contextual, relevant and intentional in the area of giving.
Get your copy of this valuable resource TODAY.