Donor Management Bowl 2017: How to choose a champion

Are you ready for some football!?! The Big Game is coming up in just over a week – the day when the best of the best in American football duke it out on the field for the title of "Champion." At your nonprofit, you may have your own bowl, of sorts, going on. We’re not talking about football, we’re talking about making the final decision between two donor management solutions. Now that you’ve narrowed it down to the best two, it’s time to find the champion – the Nonprofit CRM that will provide the greatest benefits to your organization.

How do you choose when you’re down to the final two? Here are some tips:

  1. Ask the vendors for case studies and references. Many software vendors have customers that have agreed to be references, as well as case studies they’ve written using interviews with clients. This is a great chance for you to get some inside information on the systems you’re considering from someone in the field, like you, who is using it on a regular basis.
  2. How often do you upgrade? Be sure that your solution won’t just be supported in the future, but that it will continue to be enhanced as technology advances. Ask the vendors how often new upgrades come out, if those upgrades are free or paid, and what’s coming up as far as new functionality or modules to make sure the system will grow with your organization.
  3. Watch the demos again, side-by-side. Ever been at a store trying desperately to decide between two outfits? One trick is to try them both on one more time, one after the other in the dressing room so you can compare them. Watch the demos of the two systems you’re comparing, side-by-side, or schedule back-to-back webinars with the vendors. There could be something that you missed the first time around, or you may see an obvious winner when you see the software choices again.
  4. Put a dollar amount on it. As a nonprofit organization, may of your decisions likely come down to cost. Sit down and hash out all the details. You may know the price of the software implementation, but how much will it cost to train your staff? What is the price of support? Do you need to pay for upgrades? Will you need to transfer data? Will you need to purchase additional modules?

Remember that the best Nonprofit CRM software for you is going to be the one that meets the unique needs of your organization. Keep in mind your mission, your pain points and what matters most to you and we’re confident you’ll find a Nonprofit Software Champion!