Every(Re)Action | GivingTuesday 2021 Raises Estimated $2.7 Billion

December 20, 2021 | Grace Duginski
Every(Re)Action: GivingTuesday 2021 Raises Estimated Total of $2.7 Billion

GivingTuesday broke records in its 10th year, says the Chronicle of Philanthropy—and here at EveryAction, nonprofits on our platform broke some records, too.

The Chronicle reports that, according to the GivingTuesday Data Commons (a group of more than 300 partners including organizations that process donations), some of GivingTuesday’s major successes this year included greater participation than ever before and a higher total of funds raised:

  • An estimated 35 million adults participated in the November 30 event in the United States, which is a 6 percent increase over 2020.
  • The day raised an estimated $2.7 billion over all, which is a 9 percent increase over 2020.

GivingTuesday 2021 results vs. 2020 benchmark results

These findings are welcome news for nonprofits of all issue areas, especially after the year 2020 and its wide range of fundraising outcomes. As the M+R Benchmarks revealed earlier this year, organizations responding to the COVID-19 pandemic saw explosive fundraising growth in 2020: “nonprofits that provided COVID relief, either directly or through advocacy, saw a 40% increase in online revenue, compared to a 22% increase for those that did not do COVID work[… and] Hunger and Poverty groups reported a stunning 173% increase in online revenue over the previous year.” In contrast, organizations who were not directly supporting pandemic relief efforts saw declines: for example, those who relied on ticket sales and membership saw that revenue fall by 58 percent.

2021’s strategy: retain and rebuild

Ultimately, many organizations were focused on two goals: retaining their wave of new support from 2020 or rebuilding after a lean fundraising year. A 6 percent overall increase in GivingTuesday participation and a 9 percent overall increase in funds raised year-over-year tells us that audiences maintained their support for causes close to their hearts, and these increases align with some of what we saw on the EveryAction platform this year as well. Compared to GivingTuesday 2020, nonprofits on the EveryAction platform saw:

  • a 41 percent increase in revenue;
  • a slight decline in average gift size, but a 47 percent increase in the number of gifts made; and
  • over 149 million emails sent—a new single-day email-send record!

Generosity in many ways

“GivingTuesday is not,” reminds the Chronicle, “about monetary donations alone.” Volunteering was an important way for supporters to give back this year: organizations saw an increase in volunteering of 11 percent over GivingTuesday 2020. This finding lines up with what nonprofits on EveryAction’s Mobilize network saw: not only did they log a step up in numbers of volunteer signups on GivingTuesday compared to the Monday prior, they also saw a meaningful spike at other points between Thanksgiving and Saturday, December 4. This seems to indicate that supporters are keen to give back to their communities in a multitude of ways—and, since we know that volunteers are twice as likely to donate to an organization as non-volunteers, building various types of support can pay off in the long run.

Ultimately, these results are encouraging for the nonprofit sector, especially as they look to the remainder of the year-end season and plan for 2022. As Asha Curran, co-founder and CEO of GivingTuesday, told the Chronicle:

“Giving is an important metric of civic participation, a way to build the kind of society we want to live in[…] Our hope is that this boost of generosity is an inspiration for continued giving, kindness, and recognition of our shared humanity each day of the year.”

See how nonprofits on the EveryAction, GiveGab, Mobilize, and Salsa platforms performed this GivingTuesday and over the surrounding week—download our complete report to learn more and see the results in context.