Dollar Handles and Tangible Statements

What are Dollar Handles and Tangibles?

Dollar handles are pre-selected donation amounts chosen by you, the page owner. Tangible statements are an optional addition to a dollar handle, they are an example of what a given donation amount might do. When used together, they streamline the donation flow, and helps the donor realise the potential of their donation with a real-world example.

Dollar Handles

Dollar Handles are pre-set amounts for donors to choose from when donating.

Research has shown that Dollar Handles have several effects:

  1. By offering simple choices, they can speed up donating and reduce the risk of someone getting stuck and not completing their donation because they are unsure how much is reasonable.
  2. Research indicates that dollar handles can increase average online gift size through an anchoring effect. ( The idea that $10 doesn’t seem like enough if the default suggested is $20.)
  3. When combined with a statement of the tangible effect of the amount, people are more likely to donate because they can connect their donation to an outcome, so they feel like they have made a difference.

Tips for Dollar Handles:

  • Consider your target donor, current campaign, current average donation amount to your website and Givealittle (these might be different).
  • We recommend having 3 dollar handles, to give donors lots of options, and including the "Other" button to give donors the ability to choose for themselves.
  • Only use Dollar Handles if you have a good idea what your current average donation is.
  • High dollar amounts might require more consideration by the donor - setting handles at a level that requires consultation with others might derail a donation. A default dollar handle slightly above your current average donation is probably a good place to start, with lower and higher options also.
  • Low dollar handles can increase the quantity of donations because donors don’t have to think much about it - if your goal is to get lots of donors on board and connect back with them for future fundraising campaigns, lower dollar handles might be worth considering.

Dollar Handle descriptions (AKA "Tangible Statements")

You can use the description to give donors a reason to choose a particular dollar amount. Help the donor decide which of the dollar handles is right for them, and make the donor feel useful by describing how the money they give is translated into what you do.

These descriptions can be an extension of the content from your main page - on the main Givealittle page you can tell a more general story of what your organisation is all about and on the donation screen the dollar handle description can transform that into more concrete examples of what you do.

Donating is an emotional experience and story telling has a big role to play in helping donors feel connected to you and your goals.

A strong tangible message can help justify higher dollar handles, as the description paints a picture of the impact of the amount.

Tips for descriptions:

  • Use descriptions if you have a clear use of funds that a particular dollar amount can pay for.
  • Don't be too precise or literal (e.g. "$35 could buy" or "$35 goes towards" is better than "$35 buys") but it's important that your statement be real and honest.
  • When crafting statements, try to capture the impact, not just what you do. This will have much more emotional resonance with donors. So instead of saying “$25 can provide a kid with a blanket” consider “$25 can provide one blanket for one child & well rested kids have a better chance of succeeding in life.

For example: If you are a charity that works with impoverished families.
What you do for $25 = Give a kid a blanket.
The effect of this = The child is warm at night and can sleep better.
The impact = Better health and educational outcomes.

  • Consider that dollar handle amounts can vary widely if they are tied directly to the cost of what you do - for example:

$15 buys a basic stationery pack so a kid can be well set up to learn.
$32 can provide a blanket for a kid, so they can sleep better and might get sick less. Well rested kids have a better chance of succeeding in life.
$110 pays for school trips for a year so a kid can have new experiences and expand their horizons.

  • Keep things simple. Use plain language and keep it short. (The more thinking donors have to do, the slower the donation journey - they may even abandon the donation if it's too complicated.)

How to activate Dollar Handles on your page

  1. Login to Givealittle and go to your page.

  2. On the Page Tools panel on your page, in the Extra features section, you'll find a Dollar Handles option.

  1. Select "Yes" to enable Dollar Handles on your page and the enter the details you want users to see. (Remember you don't have to have a description, but they can motivate donors to give more.)

You can edit the amount and description at anytime.

If you'd like to activate Dollar Handles on an Event page, contact us and we'll activate it for you.

Reporting on Dollar Handles

As with many aspects of fundraising, “try, learn and repeat” is a good motto. You can generate your Donor Database CSV and Payment Advice Excel reports via My Givealittle to help you track your average donation, most used dollar handle amount etc.

Contact our friendly team if you have any questions or would like help with your Dollar Handles.