Classy.org

 

Classy Logo

Classy.org  is a fundraising software for non-profits. Arts organizations can use it to set up website donations, e-mails, crowdfunding, and event registration. Organizations can also allow individuals to set up peer-to-peer fundraising.

Once an account is set up and payment processing is established, organizations can start setting up fundraising campaigns right away. Everything can be set up through the online portal. The campaign look can be personalized and is automatically mobile-optimized. There is an extensive library of templates, articles, videos and other educational resources available online.

The classy dashboard is hosted online contains all the tools needed to manage all campaign assets such as emails, donation pages, reports, and donor lists.
Sample Classy dashboard showing interface to set up  fundraising campaigns, run reports, and more. Arntson-Terrell, Mary. Classy Sample Dashboard. 7 March 2018.

Most arts organizations are already utilizing email software like Constant Contact or Mail Chimp, so using Classy to set up donation emails should not be hard. And what Classy will provide that the other mail services don’t, is the ability to create reports on all fundraising tools (not just email). Classy also has built-in follow-up emails such as receipts, reminders, and thank yous.

Crowdfunding and peer-to-peer fundraising could reach a younger arts donor base than traditional fundraising methods, so this would be a positive step for most arts organizations. Even if each younger contributor did not give as much as older donors, the organization could reach more potential donors and cultivate a future generation of patrons.

Payments are safely captured with SSL security and are Level 1 PCI compliant. Payments are authorized and processed right away and tracked on the dashboard. Recurring donations can also be set up.

This image shows that donation page set up was simple for text and donation options but importing and formatting graphics were not easy to control.
The donation page set up was simple for text and donation options but graphics are not easy to control. Arntson-Terrell, Mary. Sample donation page. 7 March 2018.

There is a free trial, so I set up my free account as if I was fundraising for the Hylton Performing Arts Center on the Mason SciTech campus. I have many years experience with graphic design for print and web and the interface was easy to use for text. But I found the lack of control over images to be frustrating. In the example to the left, you can see that I have placed a photo in a sample donation page. On the left where the input section is, the image looks like it takes up the whole width of the column and it is set up to bump the text to the next line. But in the preview screen, it does not fill the column and it is aligning with the first line of text. I could not control the image placement within the paragraph, nor could I set it to right justify. There was also no access to HTML so I could manipulate the code. On the other hand, the functionality of the donation interface is well done.

I contacted Classy about their fee structure, but they would not give me pricing unless they could give me a sales intensive demo and call. From what I could find in their FAQ section, fees are $499/month plus a 1% transaction fee, and a credit card processing fee (depending on the processor used). On the upside, there is a setting that allows donors to pay their transaction fees when they give. But due to the nature of the charges, this product would be better for larger or more established organizations.

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