In a world marred by selfish desire and senseless greed, some parts of the internet fill me with hope. I know that statement sounds a bit philosophical. However, the idea that strangers from across the world can band together to help an entrepreneur or anyone in need is simply beautiful. Crowdfunding sites like GoFundMe and other GoFundMe alternatives offer a quick and simple solution for start-ups looking for a kickstart.
You will be surprised to know the insane number of immensely popular products that have gone viral via GoFundMe or Kickstarter. Before we dive into the list of best GoFundMe alternatives, let us have a quick introduction first.
What is GoFundMe? What are crowdfunding platforms?
GoFundMe is an American for-profit crowdfunding platform that allows people to raise financial resources for life events, birthday celebrations, financial aid, etc.
The idea behind crowdfunding sites like GoFundMe is to raise money for social, economic, environmental, or business-related causes. Depending upon the terms and conditions of the website, they may or may not reserve a portion of the funds for themselves.
As a for-profit initiative, GoFundMe is not entirely free. However, there are several GoFundMe Alternatives where the donor can choose the amount of money they wish to tip for the platform’s development.
Are crowdfunding platforms safe?
Crowdfunding platforms are one of the safest and most reliable ways of raising money for genuine causes. That said, you must always choose a popular and trusted website wherever money is involved, or all your efforts will go down the drain. Note that I’ve rarely heard of scams in the crowdfunding industry. But better safe than sorry, so stay vigilant.
What about raising money for a charitable cause?
As we mentioned previously, sites like GoFundMe can be used for various social causes and charitable causes are included under that heading. In fact, some platforms have separate sections for charitable causes where you can raise funds at low or no costs. Thus, GoFundMe and GoFundMe alternatives can be used for charitable causes as well.
Now, let us dive into the list of the best sites like GoFundMe.
Bonfire is a clever and unique fundraising concept where you can sell custom T-shirts and hoodies to raise money for a cause. The best part is that it takes almost zero effort. If you have a clever idea about a shirt design and something you need funds for, Bonfire is the way to go.
The website allows you to create designs and start a campaign. That way, everyone who supports you is sure to get a little perk out of it. When your campaign ends, Bonfire takes care of product shipping and delivers the profits to you.
Another perk of using Bonfire is that there are no upfront costs. You get 100% of the profits after the campaign is over and thus, the entire cost of the campaign is borne by your contributors.
Not only is Bonfire a great way of raising money for individual and charitable reasons, but non-profit 501(c)3 organizations also use this platform to gain global support.
Other common causes you can raise money for include Adoption, animal shelters, medical causes, field trips, education, etc. Thus, Bonfire is one of the most wonderful GoFundMe alternatives you must definitely try.
Classy is another site like GoFundMe where you can raise money primarily as a non-profit organization. Non-profits are the primary focus of this website and Classy even has a payment processing solution built exclusively for them.
Classy allows you to create a tailor-made campaign using the tools available on their website. If you are raising money for disaster relief or other such causes. The company now has over six thousand non-profit partners andhas raised $2.5B+ for social causes.
The company’s beginnings were with a fundraiser when a group of friends tried raising money for cancer research. Slowly, the team evolved and morphed into one of the largest crowdfunding platforms in the world.
Now, you can contact them for global fundraising in almost 130 currencies. Classy is not fully free and you will need to get in touch with their team to discuss pricing.
Patreon is the most popular and number one crowdfunding platform for content creators and artists from all over the world. Almost every content creator I’ve come across on Instagram is using Patreon to fund their artistic endeavors and some are even making a living out of it.
Patreon allows fans (called Patrons) to pledge a certain monthly amount and showcase their dedication to the fandom. In return, artists can choose to deliver Patreon exclusive content, include the patrons’ names in their books or portfolios, or courier goodies like stickers, pins, magnets, etc. to them.
The amount you receive as an artist can quickly add up. Most Instagram artists who are mildly famous have followers in the 10k range. If even 1% of your contributors pledge one dollar, you can raise a hundred dollars every month.
If you are an artist or a content creator, I recommend choosing Patreon blindfolded since I have personally seen it in action. The pricing is also highly reasonable. Patreon will take 12% of your monthly income and charge $0.25 for every bank transfer. With a growing fanbase, this amount will soon become negligible.
Remember that Patreon is not limited to content creators and non-profits can register with them for their causes too.
GiveButter is a free fundraising platform with the most rebuts set of tools to help you create the perfect fundraising campaign. The only charge you must pay is a 2.9% payment processing fee.
Even that is not necessary since your donors can choose to pay it for you. Thus, you get almost the entirety of your profits without any hassle. Further, GiveButter provides the largest variety of options when it comes to payment.
You can pay via credit cards, debit cards, Apple Pay, and various other means. GiveButter can also integrate well with several external tools to help you take your campaign global.
Donate Kindly lives up to its name and believes in the kindness of donations. This platform is targeted at small organizations seeking donations from contributors across the world.
There are no platform fees associated with Donate Kindly. Instead, the website relies on the contributors to keep it up and running.
What gives Donate Kindly a place among the top GoFundMe alternatives is the number of tools and options organizations get. Without any technical know-how, you can create an unlimited number of campaigns and get access to helpful analytics about them.
You can even embed a Donate Kindly widget on your website to maximize exposure and receive as many donations as possible. Thus, this GoFundMe alternative is an amazing option for small organizations and start-ups that work on donations.
Indiegogo is the number one crowdfunding website for start-ups and new ideas. History tells us that it is one of the pioneers of the personal crowdfunding niche. It has fed the initial requirements of millions of creative and quality products.
Items crowdfunded via Indiegogo are almost certain to be the gold standard in their industry without carrying a super-giant brand name on their back. The website is also a great choice since it provides the option to pay via Google Pay or Apple Pay.
Indiegogo is now so advanced and evolved that you can discover a project across any niche you can imagine. The explore section is riddled with unique concepts you can back and help birth into this world.
If you have had any experience with crowdfunding in the past, you have likely heard of this GoFundMe alternative and that is for good reason.
Here’s a little tip for you: if you are unable to find a quality product for your needs on Amazon or some other e-commerce website, give Indiegogo a try.
The quality of the start-ups here is incredible. And if you are trying to crowdfund a venture of your own, Indiegogo is sure to aid you significantly in that. A little caveat, however, is that you give up 8% of your income, which may be a little high as compared to other sites like GoFundMe.
Kickstarter and Indiegogo are almost interchangeable names in terms of quality. According to the company website, it “exists to help bring creative projects to life”.
Unlike Indiegogo, Kickstarter is specifically for creative projects from various categories. This includes Art, Comics, Crafts, Dance, Design, Fashion, Film & Video, Food, Games, Journalism, Music, Photography, Publishing, Technology, and Theater.
While the list above does not include electronics, you can also find a few creative and unique concepts that belong in the science section. In either case, Kickstarter is also the gold standard in quality.
Thus, if you are looking to fund your venture, especially a venture that belongs under the category of creative arts, Kickstarter should be your number one choice.
Kickstarter fees vary from country to country. In the United States, there is a flat 5% charge on the total funds you raise, which you must pay to the website after your campaign is complete.
Above that, there is also a payment processing fee of 3% with an extra twenty cents per pledge. (A pledge on Kickstarter is a payment by a backer.
If someone supports your campaign by giving you $10, they have ‘pledged’ $10 to your campaign). Note that if a backer pledges less than $10, the payment processing fee will be 5% + $0.05 per pledge instead.
Further, if your campaign does not succeed, Kickstarter won’t ask you for any payment.
Fundable is focused primarily on the business sector. The company has raised over $615 million in funds from investors and customers all over the world. Further, Fundable allows start-ups to create two kinds of campaigns: reward-based or equity-based.
In the former, you can choose to provide an item of value in exchange for a commitment. This works just like most crowdfunding sites like GoFundMe where the backers pay a certain amount and receive something in return.
On the other hand, you can also create an equity-based campaign wherein companies must make a pre-determined portion of their company available in exchange for a monetary commitment. This allows start-ups that do not provide a developed, material product to raise large sums of money.
Note that to start a venture on Fundable, your company must have a US-based presence. You can have headquarters anywhere in the world so long as you can provide a US bank account, address, social security number, tax information, etc.
You can also start a venture if you have a partner firm in the US. Fundable can also help you set up a US C-corporation if you are looking to expand.
FundRazr is an incredible crowdfunding website whose main feature is that you can raise funds for personal, non-profit, or educational causes for no cost at all.
There are three plans available on FundRazr. The free plan is chosen by default for all campaigns. If you are an organization, you can choose the Standard or the Pro plan. FundRazr also allows you to go with a max-and-match strategy.
The website has partnered with Stripe and PayPal and thus, you can receive your funds swiftly and easily. Thus, this is a wonderful choice among the GoFundMe Alternatives.
Fundly is a fast and easy platform that does not ask for a start-up fee and does not have any raise requirements. However, after your campaign is over, you will need to pay 8% of the income and an extra 30 cents as the payment processing fee.
The cost seems a little bit steep, and most people prefer other sites like GoFundMe or Kickstarter. However, Fundly provides a few features that are not present elsewhere, the most important one being its dedication to mobile.
Fundly can help you design a campaign page that looks beautiful on desktop and mobile, ensuring that you receive the maximum benefit possible out of your campaign.
That concludes our list of the top ten GoFundMe alternatives. If you have raised funds online using crowdfunding, we would love to hear your opinions and experience. Let us know which website you think is the best through the comments box below.