Nonprofit Surveys

Work Smarter & Drive Breakthrough Results

Non-Profit Surveys Illustration

How did the annual pancake breakfast go—and how might you get a better turnout next year? How did attendees feel about the silent auction? How can you reach new donors or identify giving patterns? A cost-effective way to gather market research, online surveys and questionnaires can help nonprofits gauge interest in events and fundraisers, gain a better understanding of donors’ reasons for contributing, and reach earned revenue goals. Surveys can help you identify areas of interest to constituents, get to know your users’ opinions, and keep your funders happy. Nonprofit survey results can help you uncover the metrics you need to track to in order to drive improvements so that you can spend more time transforming your vision into a reality.

Common Areas of Focus for Nonprofits Using Online Surveys

  • Marketing research. Getting the word out on your mission and vision is vital to advancing your cause. Take this valuable opportunity to tell your story, and get your prospects excited about helping you. Test messaging concepts, including potential taglines and logos. Does your brand identity effectively communicate your services and expertise? Through which marketing channels will you most effectively reach your audience? You can also gather ideas on fresh content that your prospects will find compelling and useful—all by sending out a marketing survey.
  • Event planning. Nonprofits use surveys for pre- and post-event feedback. Gauge interest on activities that donors, partners, volunteers, and staff members would likely attend or be willing to participate in. What venues are most accessible or convenient for attendees? Use an event planning survey to manage contact information and get insights from your key audience on an array of events, including trainings, strategy sessions, and campaigns to gain a better understanding of funding sources, demographics, staffing, and more.
  • Gathering donor feedback. Send out an online questionnaire to understand the opinions, motivations, attitudes, and giving patterns of your current and prospective donors. Poll your supporters to discover who makes up your base. Why do they support your cause or organization? What issues would they like your organization to focus on? Start a conversation with these influential groups, identify growth opportunities, and leverage these insights to increase donor support and fundraising efficiency. Use a donor feedback survey template to get started.
  • Online fundraising. With the advent of social web and the rise of ecommerce, it’s hardly a surprise that charitable online giving is also growing in popularity. Trying to gauge the viability of collecting donations online for your organization? Wonder how other charities, NGOs or nonprofit foundations have fared in their foray into digital donations? Get started by taking a look at our online fundraising survey template.
  • Strategic planning. Are there ways to lower fundraising costs? Should you retool your current fundraising strategy? How can you best guide membership and development efforts? What’s the best way to manage the vital relationships with donors, patrons, and members to drive results? What types of loyalty programs would benefit your organization? Use a questionnaire to find the answers to these types of questions that are critical to the success of your organization.
  • Volunteer management. How can you improve retention and recruiting processes? What feedback can you gather from volunteer coordinators, managers, and organizers? Is your organization following volunteer management best practices; and what opportunities of improvement exist within? How can policymakers spearhead support for volunteer resources or connect volunteers to associations? Using a volunteer recruitment and placement team survey can help you get the answers you need.
  • Volunteer satisfaction survey. Get actionable volunteer feedback to keep them coming back to support your cause. Do volunteers feel they have access to adequate training and mentoring resources? Can they easily access information they need? Use surveys to evaluate why and when volunteers are leaving, and facilitate regular communication to ensure you’re giving them the support they need. Also, make sure that if you are asking volunteers to rate something, they will need at least five data points to choose from (called a “Likert scale).”
  • 360-degree feedback. Know what it takes to get on the same page. Achieve organizational alignment and increase the effectiveness of your employees. Nonprofits can use a 360-degree employee evaluation template to evaluate employee performance based on feedback from supervisors, peers, and subordinates. This type of feedback is focused on employee assessment from multiple perspectives. You might also consider asking your own staff to rate their own job performance with self-assessment surveys. Have they met the goals set at the beginning of the quarter or year? Were the goals set for them reasonable and attainable?
  • Board governance. In the face of a delicate economy, many nonprofits are met with increasing demands and shrinking revenues. Management and governance are critical to the success and sustainability of your organization. Identify roadblocks and challenges; explore potential solutions to enhance governance practices; figure out how exactly you must retool your strategic plans. Are there any new revenue streams you might be able to tap into? Answer all of these questions by sending out an online survey.
  • Association member satisfaction questionnaire. Are current members engaged and satisfied? Do they have ample networking opportunities? Are they satisfied with current benefits of membership? Are member events valuable/useful? Would current members recommend membership to their own colleagues? Send out an online survey to find out.

3 Tips for Getting Started with Your Nonprofit Survey

  1. Clarity is king Similar to the use cases noted above, think about what questions you are seeking the answers to, and hone in on specific objectives. Are you trying to determine the quality and effectiveness of a strategic planning session? Or aiming to align staff members’ goals to the broader vision of the organization?
  2. Introduce your objective with a brief sentence that provides context. Tell survey takers why you’re asking these questions and how their feedback will help, e.g. “Your suggestions will help us to better understand how we can retain and recruit more volunteers.”
  3. Test drive your survey with a handful of people who are a representative sample of your intended audience. Consider running your survey by peers or colleagues. This is a good way to figure out if the questions you’re asking are the ones that will help you achieve the objectives you’ve defined.

SurveyMonkey Offers Nonprofit Survey Templates

Maximize your time and operational efficiencies by leveraging SurveyMonkey's methodologist-certified nonprofit survey templates. You'll be able to create your online survey in a matter of minutes. SurveyMonkey also gives you access to the survey tools you need to easily deploy and analyze your nonprofit survey—empowering your entire organization to make smarter decisions. And we take survey security seriously, so rest assured knowing your data and insights are safe with us.

Here at SurveyMonkey, we understand that nonprofits need fewer tasks and expenses, not more. That's why our professional survey methodologists have created lots of nonprofit survey templates that make it easy to gain insights about your donors, volunteers, partners and recipients.

Getting started with your nonprofit survey shouldn't take a lot of time, energy, or money. Just take one of our existing nonprofit survey templates and customize it with your colors, logos, and more—or create your own template just as easily. Creating nonprofit surveys has never been easier, faster, or more fun.

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