Those aged 35 to 54 gave the most to charity in 2017 with online donations increasing. However, over a third (37%) of consumers say they don’t give because they’re unsure how charities use their money, research from Barclays Corporate Banking has found.
According to the Barclays Corporate Banking report, The Future of Giving, which questioned over 2,000 UK consumers, people aged 35 to 54 say they gave an average of £265 last year to charities, followed by £246 from under-35s, 57% of which said they were more likely to donate today than they were three years ago. Over 55s gave £168 in comparison.
However, the research, which also included a poll of 301 large charities, also shows that six in ten good causes still regard the over 50s as their focal age group for donations.
Putting people off from donating is mainly a lack of disposable income (53%) but 32% also cited a lack of trust in charities, while over a third (37%) said they don’t give because they’re unsure how charities will use donations, and almost a fifth (17%) cite a lack of knowledge about charity activities.
For those that do give, the most popular causes are children, animals and medical conditions, while sports and arts were least popular.
18% of the over-55s have made online donations over the past year, compared to one in three people in the other age groups, and while 86% of charities say young people prefer online donations, fewer consumers (52%) agree. Younger people are still more likely to have donated offline than online over the past year, by a margin of 38% to 31%.
On-street donations are the most popular method of giving (chosen by 48%) but 73% of the charities surveyed say they are declining as people carry less cash. Seven out of 10 charities reported an increase in online donations over the past three years, and more expect it to rise further over the next three years with 50% exploring new ways to donate.
The survey showed that contactless donation boxes are currently being used by 4% of charities. 54% said they found new methods such as contactless helpful, with the main barrier to contactless adoption concern over security, cited by 48%. A further 11% say the expense of investment in contactless is a deterrent. However, among the 44% who have recently introduced new technology, the vast majority said they had found the investment worthwhile, with over half pronouncing it very useful.
David McHattie, Head of Charities at Barclays Corporate Banking, said:
“The voluntary sector contributes £12.2 billion to the UK economy and provides crucial support to the most deserving of causes. Fast moving shifts in technology and consumer behaviour create significant opportunities for charities, however, to continue to thrive, the third sector must continue to adapt.
“Nurturing loyal givers, while finding further ways to attract new support are critical. Investing in new innovations, whether online, on street, or in store, will ensure that important causes continue to benefit from changing donation demographics and preferences.”
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