Church Online Giving

Church Online Giving (updated Jan 2016)

churchbuzz Church Online Giving, Church Websites

The following is our most current thinking on what are the best online payment services for Churches.

Online Giving Selection Criteria

The criteria we used to select these payment services are:

  • Easy to setup – setup within one day, hassle free
  • No setup fees
  • No monthly fees
  • Low transaction fees / simple billing
  • 100% cloud based – can do all signups online
  • Mainstream service that integrates with 3rd party form builders and such
  • Integrates with various WordPress plugins for flexible payment forms
  • Has an easy to use API (in case we ever need to do any custom programming with it)
So based on that criteria we have ONE main processing service that we recommend:  Stripe.  Stripe is TAKING OVER as the de-facto Payment Processor on the web and quickly replacing Paypal!  It has a ton of developer support, their API is super easy to use, their setup and payment structure are super simple, we can use them with our WordPress websites and their tech support is great!


Stripe Fee Information:

Fees are only applied when your organization accepts a donation.  There are no setup fees, minimum fees or monthly fees.  You can collect one time donations and/or setup recurring donations.

All organizations (whether for profit or non-profit) pay the following simple fee structure:

  • 2.9% + $.30 per transaction (ex: $3.20 on a $100 donation)
  • No monthly fees
  • No failed transaction or refund fees (fees only charged on successful charges)
  • Same fees for all cards:  Amex, Discover, Mileage cards, etc…

Full detail and latest rate info for Stripe


How to Register for a Stripe Account

  1. Before you register for Stripe read the rest of this page, especially the information about below.
  2. Click this link to go to the: “Sign Up Page“.
  3. Enter an email address and password to create the account – simplest registration form ever!
  4. Follow the instructions thereafter to setup your account.  It is super simple!  The most important thing you will need is your Bank Account Number and Routing Code to setup the link with your bank account.

Adding an Online Giving form to your website

First off keep in mind that online giving is generally something we ONLY want promote to CHURCH MEMBERS or those specifically looking to give to your church online.  Do NOT show a link to your ONLINE GIVING in the header of your website or with a huge button on your website – I believe this will turn off first time visitors (it certainly will do NOTHING to make them feel welcome and invited).  Put your online giving link down in the footer of your site.
If you are raising money for a special need (natural disaster, adding a public playground, etc) then it may be appropriate to setup a giving page specifically for this need.  Stripe will allow you to do this via setting up a special JotForm or WordPress form specifically for this need.  This makes you very flexible in how you will receive online payments!

In terms of how to add the Stripe donation / payment form to your website (any website where you can either setup a link or embed javascript) there are many options, keep reading.

  1.  We often use a third party tool called JotForm to process all payments on your website. This tool is completely free for any church who is accepting less than 10 payments per month or 1000 non-payment registration forms per month.  Once you exceed that limit, you will need to pay $9.95 per month and the limit is then raised to 1000 payment or non-payment enabled forms.  It is very easy to integrate Stripe with JotForm, inexpensive and a great way to start (FREE!)
  2. If you have a WordPress website you can also use Gravity Forms or Ninja Forms.  They integrate with Stripe nicely!
  3. A big recommendation is to use a service called!  They use Stripe behind the scenes.  You don’t even need to open a Stripe account directly, they will set it up for you!  There are no additional fees for using and it allows you to setup a MOBILE FRIENDLY giving form on any website very easily.
  4. And of course, if you have a ChurchBuzz website we take care of all of this for you and setup a and/or Stripe account for you so you don’t even have to worry about any of this!

Need more help – we love helping churches – email me:!