15 Ways to Increase Church Offering
While many followers view tithing as an act of faith, leaders in the ministry understand that it’s much more. What’s collected through these donations is literally what keeps the lights on at houses of worship. Unfortunately, giving has continuously gone down in recent years. This makes new ways to increase church offerings a necessity.
Even before the coronavirus drastically impacted tithing at the start of 2020, giving to the ministry was already on the decline. Fortunately, this doesn’t have to be an unavoidable fact of life. There are several strategies that have been proven to increase church offerings, and if you implement them correctly, your ministry can stay strong through the fiercest of storms.
1. Don’t Be Afraid to Talk About Money
Many people find it awkward to discuss finances in their normal lives, so it’s understandable for ministry leaders to shy away from talking about money in church. Unfortunately, this is one of the biggest unnecessary problems that many congregations face. Your parishioners are adults, so they can handle serious conversations.
The important thing for ministry leaders to remember is to always remain gentle and pastoral when discussing church offerings. It’s important to never come off as judgmental or upset over low giving levels. Let congregants know why giving is so important to your mission, but make sure they understand that God loves them regardless.
2. Practice Wise Stewardship at All Times
One of the biggest reasons people don’t tithe like they should is a lack of trust. By 2019, trust in organized religion had dropped to 36 percent – nearly half of what it was in 1975. To be fair, trust levels in the government and even fellow citizens dropped during this time as well. Even with this being the case, though, it’s important for church leaders to show they can be trusted financially.
This means practicing wise stewardship at all times. Congregants need to know where the money they give the church offering is going. This means keeping an accurate budget, making sure your works are visible, cutting down on non-essential spending, and always keeping parishioners up to date.
If you practice and demonstrate wise stewardship, a lack of trust doesn’t have to be one of the reasons people don’t tithe.
3. Get to Know Your Donors
When it comes down to brass tacks, those who give to the church offering are donors. Once you realize this, increasing tithing and overall giving becomes a far simpler mission. This is because you can utilize the same strategies as non-profit organizations, and many of their most successful tactics revolve around better understanding donors.
You can do this in a variety of ways – such as studying demographics, giving out surveys and reviewing past giving – but it all really comes down to donor mapping. By learning what’s important to your parishioners and then mapping out their giving experience based on that knowledge, you’re showing them exactly why they should give to the church offering.
Donor mapping is one of the foundational elements of the DonorWerx Framework. Contact us today and we’ll show you how to increase giving by getting to know your congregants and aligning your messaging with their values.
4. Present Tithing as Helping People – Not the Church
When people put their money into the offering plate, they often assume its purpose is to help the church. While this is an understandable and technically accurate assumption, it doesn’t really paint the whole picture. By helping the church, your congregants are actually helping other people.
This is how tithing should be taught and discussed within the house of God. Church offerings do go into the ministry budget, but in turn, this budget funds important missions such as feeding the homeless, helping children get school clothes, providing financial assistance to parishioners, and running the food pantry.
By presenting tithing as “helping people” rather than “helping the church,” congregants will be more motivated to give.
5. Offer Financial Training at Your Church
Many people don’t give what they should to the church offering because they think they can’t. In their defense, this could be true by the end of the month. In many cases, though, this is simply due to a lack of financial know-how. If someone doesn’t know how to properly budget their income and expenses, how will they fit tithing into their financial planning?
This simple reality is why many churches now provide personal financial training within their ministry. This can be offered through seminars or small groups, and the focus should revolve around personal savings, debt reduction, basic budgeting and other financial essentials. When teaching this course, you can also show congregants how to fit giving into their budgets.
The Bible says it’s our spiritual duty to tithe, and sometimes congregants just need to be shown how.
6. Share Encouraging Success Stories
Since parishioners like to know the church offering is doing some good in the world, sharing encouraging stories of God working through your ministry is a surefire way to increase giving. This can be done within a donor thank you video – which can be shared to social media after initially being sent to donors – or by simply having someone give testimony during services.
You could also share photos of missions in action or tell the story of how everyone’s tithes helped a local neighbor get out of a dangerous living situation. One thing that remains consistent over time – whether it’s in the movies or the house of God – is that folks love stories with happy endings. Take the time to give them one.
7. Organize Short-Term Giving Campaigns
The history of Giving Tuesday shows just how powerful a short-term giving campaign can be. Fortunately, you don’t have to wait for an internationally recognized day of giving to organize such a campaign. A few times throughout the year, you should take up a church offering for a specific cause.
Whether it’s fulfilling a community need or sending supplies abroad, just find something that people can latch onto. Knowing the importance of the cause and the quickly-closing window to give will create a sense of urgency.
8. Look Towards Local Businesses
Church leaders often only look to their congregations for donations, but local businesses are typically willing to give as well. This is frequently their way of giving back to the community, and since they can write off many of their donations, it’s a win-win for everyone involved. These businesses don’t typically reach out on their own, though, so it’s up to you to make initial contact.
Asking local companies to contribute to the church offering is actually easier than it sounds. You could call up the manager and ask if they’d sponsor a fundraising event, or you could reach out to a local restaurant about having a Sunday Lunch event where part of the revenue is donated to the ministry.
Many churches even have a business directory where they feature companies who have helped out. Give local firms the chance to do their part. They might just surprise you.
9. Offer Multiple Ways to Give
Considering the fact that church offerings and donations make up 98 percent of ministry revenue, it’s important that you provide a variety of ways for congregants to give. Some people don’t carry cash, and others may prefer to give digitally. Consider offering your congregants all the following ways to give:
- Offering envelopes: Place these in bulletins to encourage a traditional church offering.
- Kiosks: Even if someone forgets to get cash, onsite kiosks will allow them to give after the service.
- Online giving: Take a look at some of the best online donation pages to see how others succeed in virtual giving.
- Text-to-give: Congregants can tithe by simply sending a text.
- Automatic tithing: Allow parishioners to set up automatic payments to encourage continued giving.
- Smartphone giving: Using certain apps – or your own church app – you can offer another way for congregants to give digitally.
By providing multiple ways for members to contribute to the church offering, you’re minimizing the likelihood that they won’t be able to contribute. As part of the DonorWerx Framework, we offer several digital giving tools to help you increase giving. Contact us today to learn more about these valuable resources.
10. Be Generous Yourself
It may seem a little tacky to tell your congregants how much you contribute, but when you give generously yourself, you don’t really need to tell them. Whether we realize it or not, giving abundantly changes the way we behave. It finds a way to drill down into our very DNA. Your parishioners will take notice of this. Lead by example, and your flock will follow.
11. Keep Congregants Engaged
Nearly every house of worship saw reduced tithing due to the spread of COVID-19. One of the big reasons behind this was that congregants were no longer engaged. People typically give to the church offering because it’s at the top of their minds when the collection plate passes. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case when everyone is socially distancing.
Whether a pandemic is occurring or not, increased giving comes down to donor engagement. Send out emails, interact with people who comment on social media, and offer virtual services for those who can’t come in person. If you want your members to contribute to your ministry, you have to make sure you stay on their minds.
12. Understand the Truths of Church Tithing
Houses of worship are in a constant battle with Satan, but he isn’t the only enemy we’re facing. Less money in the church offering plate should also be viewed as an adversary, and as with any foe, the only way to persevere is to understand what we’re up against. This is why you need to learn the facts about church tithing.
This means recognizing that tithes are going down, and accepting that there are reasons for this well within our control. You should realize that surveying can increase giving, and that the majority of ministries have no savings to fall back on. Once you acknowledge these truths, you can begin working towards overcoming the enemy.
13. Give More to Your Biggest Givers
The 80/20 Rule states that 20 percent of your congregation is doing 80 percent of the work. This applies to volunteering, church offering contributions, outreach and every other aspect of the ministry. The Bible tells us that this doesn’t necessarily make them better stewards, but their willingness to give shouldn’t be overlooked.
You can encourage continued contributions by holding special events for your biggest donors or simply cluing them in to the inner working of the church. Your overall goal should be to show them they hold a special place within your ministry – because in reality, they do.
14. Know Bible Verses About Giving
Even the most seasoned ministry leaders sometimes have difficulty coming up with the right Bible verse for a specific situation. When it comes to church offerings, this can greatly reduce your ability to increase tithes.
Check out our list of the most important verses about tithing so you’re always ready when you’re hit with hard questions or when giving comes up during a sermon.
15. Say ‘Thank You’
It’s one of the easiest things to do in the world, but it’s still one of the most overlooked aspects of the church offering. When your congregants help you achieve something – whether it’s the completion of a new wing, supporting a family going through difficulties, or simply paying the light bill – make sure you say ‘thank you.’
In fact, make saying ‘thank you’ a new habit after every church offering. Congregants need to know that their efforts are noticed and appreciated. You should also set up automated thank-you messages with your online giving platform. The Bible tells us to give thanks in all things, so make sure you’re living up to the Word.
Make it a Priority to Increase Church Offerings
Statistics consistently show that tithing and donations make up the bulk of church revenue. While it may feel strange to focus so much on money within the house of God, you must remember that funding is the only way you can perform His work. When you make the church offering a priority, all your other priorities become much easier to accomplish.
When we created the DonorWerx Framework, we did so with you in mind. Schedule a 30-minute Discovery Call with us today, and we’ll show you how improved donor centricity can increase giving in your ministry.