Online giving is critical for churches. This is not news. But how do you set it up? Or, maybe a better question to ask is how do you set up online giving easily? Many of our church WordPress theme users have already discovered Tithe.ly. Now we want to make sure all of our users know about it. First I want to tell you what is great about Tithe.ly then I’ll walk you through setting up your account with them and adding a “Give” button to your WordPress-powered church website.
Why to Use Tithe.ly for Online Giving
There are several reasons we like Tithe.ly.
- It’s easy for your church and church attenders to use
- Giving can be made with credit card, debit card or bank account
- Giving can be one-time or on an automatically recurring basis
- Handle giving online, via mobile app, texting, kiosk or envelopes
- Manual entry makes bulk processing envelope giving faster
- Tithe.ly uses the same payment processor we use and love — Stripe
- It’s safe and secure for churches and churchgoers
The cost is 1% + $0.30 for payments from the giver’s bank account or 2.9% + $0.30 per credit or debit card transaction (American Express transactions are 3.5% + $0.30). One handy feature is to let the giver opt to cover the payment processing fee so that your church receives the full amount. There are no setup, monthly or annual fees other than the option to offer “Text to Give” for $19/month which makes giving really easy (as in it takes a person five seconds to give, once setup).
Here’s a video showing you how giving via Tithe.ly’s mobile app works.
Setting Up Your Church’s Tithe.ly Account
Now that you’ve been introduced to Tithe.ly’s online giving solution, let me walk you through the setup process before you actually do it. As of writing, Tithe.ly is available to churches in the US, Canada, Australia and United Kingdom. Check their website or contact them if your church is in another country and you want to use Tithe.ly. It’s possible they will add support for other countries after this article has been published.
Go to Tithe.ly‘s website and click the “Sign Up” button at the top right.
There are three steps. The first is to provide some basic account information. This is for logging into your Tithe.ly account in the future.
The second step is to provide information about your church such as name and location. It’s possible to setup multiple campuses in one account (after signing up) if you want to separate giving in that manner.
Lastly, you will need to provide bank details. This is for Tithe.ly to deposit what has been given to your church into your church’s bank account. Tithe.ly uses SSL for secure transmission of this information.
Note: When you choose a country other than US, the SSN field disappears.
At this point you’re all signed up and can now add a “Give” button to your website and start accepting payments in other ways such as via the Tithe.ly mobile app.
Adding a Tithe.ly Give Button in WordPress
It’s simple to add a “Give” button to your church’s WordPress-powered website. You don’t even need to install a plugin. Here’s how we recommend doing it.
First, go to your Tithe.ly account then click on Website Giving. You will see that there are two options, “Giving Widget” and “Direct Link”. The widget causes a payment form to open within your website when a user clicks the “Give” button. The “Direct Link” option will take the user to a separate page with the same form. They are both good options but since most churches don’t have an SSL certificate (recommended for widget), I’m going to demonstrate the “Direct Link” option.
Scroll down to “Direct Link” and copy the URL to your clipboard (highlight it then CTRL-C on Windows or CMD-C on Mac).
Next, create a page in WordPress by going to Pages > Add New. You can call it something like “Giving”. Type “Give Now” then highlight that text and click the link icon. Paste the “Direct Link” URL you copied from your Tithe.ly account.
If you are using one of our church WordPress themes then you can make that link into a styled button by clicking on the Text tab at the top-right of the content editor. Find the HTML for the “Give Now” link you made then add a
class="themename-button" attribute. Replace themename with the name of your theme in lowercase (e.g.
class="exodus-button" for the Exodus theme).
Publish your page and you will have something like this with a “Give Now” button directing users to a Tithe.ly giving form. It’s a good idea to explain how online giving works by making it clear that the user can give one-time or on a recurring basis and that they can do it via credit card, debit card or bank account. You may want to mention that they can give via their mobile device and provide a link to http://get.tithe.ly/download-tithely-app/ which tells users more about that.
The giving form itself looks like this: https://tithe.ly/give?c=44523. Your Tithe.ly account gives you control over this form in several ways, including the ability to upload a logo and change the color. Notice in this example the “Cover card processing fees” option is demonstrated (we’ve heard that in one church more than 90% opt for this).
Note: If you do want to use the widget option with an SSL certificate but don’t want to pay or bother with renewing one every year, see our hosting recommendations (many hosts now include free, auto-installed SSL certificates and will move your site for free).
That’s all there is to it. Tithe.ly is a great solution for online giving. It’s easy to sign up and implement a “Give” button on your WordPress powered church website — without even having to install a plugin. And if you are using one of our themes then you can take advantage of styling that makes the button blend in perfectly with the overall design.
Have some thoughts on Tithe.ly or online giving? Post a comment.