Donor survey template

How to effectively survey your nonprofit's supporters

Many organizations use surveys for lead generation, but your nonprofit can also use them to better understand your supporters and what they need.

For example, you can use surveys to identify giving readiness by geography, gender, age, and more.

We recommend sending multiple surveys to a small, representative sample to get continuing insights on your community. When creating your survey, make sure you lead with empathy and build a connection to your organization and mission.

We've included a survey email along with the survey template. However, if you're writing your own, you may want to keep these tips in mind:

  • Be open and transparent
  • Make the ask about the respondent, not your organization
  • Make the email short and to-the-point
  • Lead with gratitude and how it serves the donor
  • Include a clear CTA. (Ie. “Will you tell us what’s on your mind these days so we can serve you better? Take this 5-minute survey so we can help.”)

Once you've received your survey results back, make sure you take time to identify your respondents' key needs and look for themes. This might be the need for joy, human connection, a path to impact, or simply a distraction from the current crisis.

Then, try to segment your respondents into clear audiences and reach back out to them, or reference your surveys in future messaging. For example, these audiences might be loyal donors who want to hear about more giving options, or younger donors who are interested in joining virtual events.

Download the template