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Nonprofit Strategies

Your guide to finding the best free CRM for nonprofits

Discover which free nonprofit CRM on this list will best meet your needs—and what “free” really gets you.

Rachel Ayotte
September 4, 2023
Nerd Mr Butter

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A robust customer relationship management platform (CRM) is the bread and butter of nonprofit success, but CRM software can get expensive quickly. While a CRM for nonprofits free of charge may be hard to find, it’s not impossible. 

In this guide, we’ll share what to look for in a nonprofit CRM so that you can compare tools and find your perfect match. Plus, we’ve done a deep dive into the five top free CRMs for nonprofits to see what they offer and determine just how “free” they really are. 

What to look for in a free nonprofit CRM

Not all free nonprofit CRM software is created equal. So when it comes to choosing the right donor management software for your organization, make sure to note which of the following features are available: 

  • Donor segmentation 💰 Does the CRM make it easy to filter, sort, and search your donor data?
  • Easy imports and exports 💻 Can you bulk import contacts and transactions and export the data you need in a useful format?
  • Integrations ⚒️ Does the platform have built-in fundraising features, and does it integrate easily with other useful platforms?
  • Customization 🎨 Does the CRM system offer custom fields, tags, filters, and notes, for organized contact management? 
  • Detailed contacts 👤 Can nonprofits create personalized donor profiles with timelines, activity tracking, and year-end reports?
  • Data hygiene 🧼 Are there seamless de-duplication and data validation tools? 
  • Unlimited capacity 🚀 Can you import and create as many contact profiles as you need?

1. Givebutter

Givebutter is an all-in-one fundraising platform that brings together everything changemakers need to fund their missions—including a powerful nonprofit CRM. And like all of the platform’s robust fundraising features, Givebutter’s CRM is completely free. 

Snapshot of Givebutter's free crm for nonprofits

💰 Is it really free? Yes! While other platforms require subscriptions or charge platform fees—and even a bit extra for certain features or additional contact records in your donor database—Givebutter is completely free to use. 

With no complicated pricing plans or tiered packages (thanks to optional tips from donors), nonprofits can import unlimited contact records, export and import data, create donor segments, and send personalized emails and texts at scale—all in one place. 

📣 Standout features:

  • Donation management: Organize all of your gifts in one place on the same platform where you run your fundraising campaigns and events. 
  • Household management: Track important relationships between donors and household groups and see their collective giving summaries.
  • Data hygiene: Use de-duplication tools to surface mistakes and clean up your contacts.
  • Integrations: Sync up with 1,000+ third-party integrations.
  • Donor segmentation: Filter, sort, and live search in your donor data to make it easy to send targeted donor communications.
  • Customized contact management: View detailed donor history in personalized contact profiles, which includes automatic activity tracking, at-a-glance giving summaries, unique filters, tags, labels, and more.
  • Unlimited capacity: Create and import as many contacts as you need at no additional cost.

🔥 Our take: We’re not just buttering ourselves up here. Givebutter is one of the highest-rated donor management software on G2 based on user satisfaction. With dozens of free features that work together seamlessly, Givebutter helps changemakers like you focus on the things that really matter—making the world a butter place.

Start building better donor relationships today

2. Funraise

Funraise is another user-friendly fundraising solution that helps organizations scale and succeed. And while this platform offers a free donor CRM for nonprofits, only paid customers get access to a larger and more robust suite of important features.

Snapshot of Funraise's free crm for nonprofits

💰 Is it really free? Only to a point: Funraise offers donor-covered fees so that nonprofits aren’t saddled with platform fees, and its pricing options include a free plan with access to a few integrations like Double the Donation—but only for up to 1,000 contacts. After that, you need to switch to a paid plan.

📣 Standout features: 

  • Household management: Group families together to see the collective impact.
  • Interaction tracking: Document donor relationship touch-points.
  • Donor segmentation: Filter and save lists with ease.
  • Donor portfolios: Assign staff members their own supporter portfolio and create tasks.
  • Donor-facing app: Giving by Funraise gives supporters access to their donation information.

🔥 Our take: Funraise offers some solid CRM features including robust segmentation and filters. And unlike competitors, Funraise also offers some pretty unique tools like donor portfolios and a donor-facing app.

However, Fundraise’s free plan is quite limited. Only paid users can get access to their full suite of fundraising features and integrations, as well as other important tools like bulk imports, reporting, and unlimited contact profiles. Customers who use the free plan will inevitably have to upgrade to a paid plan as they scale.

3. Givelify

Givelify offers donor management tools to nonprofit organizations and their donors: for nonprofits, the software solution offers a CRM with analytics and insights as well as some key integrations. 

For donors, the Givelify app is built to help users search for nonprofits, give easily, and centralize all their philanthropic efforts. Despite being free, however, Givelify’s CRM has very little customization capabilities and limited integrations.

Snapshot of Givelify's free crm for nonprofits

💰  Is it really free? This minority-owned FinTech-for-Good company really is free to use without any sign-up or platform fees. The only charges organizations see is the standard payment processing fee of 2.9% + $0.30 applied to each donation made through the platform.

📣 Standout features: 

  • Custom donor profiles: Track communications with donations automatically.
  • Donor insights with Givelify Analytics Studio: View AI-powered stats like giving frequency and giving styles.
  • Built-in donor messaging: Create custom donor messages and send quick replies.

🔥 Our take: Givelify’s best CRM features are its analytics and insights tools, which are powered by AI. Givelfy is a great option for organizations that want to supercharge their donor analysis. However, as far as free CRMs for nonprofits go, Givelify falls short of some basic features: limited payment methods, lack of customizations, and few integration capabilities, which can restrict organizations looking for something a bit more powerful.

4. DonorDock

DonorDock is designed to help nonprofits streamline and organize all of their fundraising initiatives and data in one central place. Sleek and intuitive, users report great functionality and little to no glitches or bugs. 

While DonorDock is a great solution for organizations looking for secure data and donor management, access to their full suite of CRM features comes at a hefty price.

Snapshot of DonorDock's free crm for nonprofits

💰 Is it really free? Not if you want full access. This highly-rated tool offers a free plan in addition to a few paid plans. Regardless of the subscription tier, DonorDock does not charge platform fees, but they do charge processing fees, which donors can cover. 

When donating, supporters are asked to cover 5% + $0.30 of their transaction. If they choose to cover these fees, DonorDock will give 2.2% + $0.30 to the charity to cover their Stripe processing fees.

📣 Standout features: 

  • Unlimited contacts: Create as many profiles as you need.
  • Task management: Get automatic task notifications and reminders to connect with donors.
  • Integrations: DonorDock integrates with thousands of popular platforms, like Classy, MailChimp, and more.
  • Free training and support: DonorDock offers free assistance with data migrations. 

🔥 Our take: DonorDock is a good option for new nonprofits looking for a simple, easy-to-set-up, free CRM that offers access to data importing assistance, live training, and more. But, like most of the competitors, this tool’s free plan is quite limited—only paid plans get access to the full suite of integrations and CRM features.

5. Bitrix24

Though Bitrix24 isn’t specifically designed for nonprofits, they do offer e-commerce tools and features that are geared towards charities, like its free CRM for nonprofits

From grant management to campaign organization, Bitrix24 is a basic solution for nonprofits looking to consolidate their data in one central place.

Snapshot of Bitrix24's free crm for nonprofits

💰  Is it really free? Yes! Bitrix24 pricing includes paid plans and one unlimited free plan specifically for nonprofits—no platform or processing fees are listed.

📣 Standout features: 

  • Volunteer management and coordination: Organize supporters and their duties.
  • Contact management: Consolidate donor data.
  • Project and team management: Assign tasks to team members.
  • Built-in communication channels: Use social network integrations and instant messaging tools.

🔥 Our take: Though nonprofits can use Bitrix24’s free CRM, it’s not specifically designed for charity work. In other words, the free tool lacks in some fundamental areas, including customization capabilities and segmentation. Plus, free users don’t have access to data hygiene tools, analytics, contact exports, and integration with marketing and engagement tools.

Manage donors better with Givebutter

While there are several “free” nonprofit CRMs on the market, many lack the necessary tools and integrations to help organizations scale in the long term. Or, if it does have all the right tools, you’ll end up having to pay to use them after all. 

Turns out, one of the best CRMs for nonprofits is also 100% free. 

With Givebutter, every nonprofit gets access to all of the fundraising, donor management, and engagement tools they need—plus lots of integrations, transparent pricing, and top-rated customer support—without any monthly costs or hidden fees. Making the switch has never been easier.

If your nonprofit organization is in need of an all-in-one solution that will grow with you, create your free account and see what Givebutter’s free nonprofit CRM can do for your fundraising success.

Methodology

Our editorial team sources comparison metrics directly from sites like G2, Capterra, Trustpilot, Software Advice, GetApp, and more. Data gathered in August 2023.
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