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The Top 6 Nonprofit Payment Solutions for 2022


Does your nonprofit have a payment processor yet? Maybe you need one to diversify your revenue streams, or maybe you wish to have greater security in your payments. There are a handful of reasons that nonprofit payment processing may be high on your list of "to dos," but if you don’t know exactly what to look for, choosing one can be pretty daunting. 

We decided to make things a little easier by assembling the top 5 payment solutions for nonprofits in 2022, including the most crucial features of each to help you narrow down your options.

Let’s go!

Payment Processor Features to Look Out For

Payment processors serve as intermediaries between nonprofits and the financial institutions involved in their bank card transactions. By facilitating credit card processing for nonprofits they help organizations avoid the back and forth of constantly collecting manual payments like cash or check, which frees up time for them to do other things that benefit their cause. We have listed all of the major payment processor features below to help you decide which software is right for your nonprofit, both in person and online!


When a processor utilizes tokenization, it encrypts the string of digits that represent your customer’s bank account before it reaches your server. The processor automatically changes each number to a random one, which ensures that this sensitive information never actually reaches your website. Paypal trail-blazed the path of tokenization, which has made it a favorite go-between for transactions made online around the world today. It allows for the utmost privacy, which enables your supporters to feel safe when shopping at online merchandise stores for nonprofits or completing other online transactions. Not all processors make use of tokenization, so it is worth looking into before you commit to one. 

CMS Integration

You want to ensure that your payment processor is completely compatible with your existing CMS (content management system). It can be more difficult to switch your CMS than to choose a different payment processor, so do not forget to check your specs.

top-5-nonprofit-payment-solutions-for-2022-featuresTrish is ready to look for some nonprofit payment solutions!

Guest Login Options

Some people want a no-fuss approach to their online affairs. When you force your customers, especially new customers, to make an account in order to complete a transaction, they may hesitate to follow through and simply click away to spend their money elsewhere. Allowing them to check out as a guest saves them time and secures your donations or sales. 

Two-Factor Authentication

When a donor or member does want that added layer of protection, in the form of an account, asking them to provide multiple layers of verification (through email or SMS codes, and more) in order to login and do business with your organization will likely make them feel their information is safe. Multiple layers of authentication also make it more difficult for hackers to access sensitive information. Usually, multi-factor authentication is most important to recurring donors.

SSL Certificate

SSL is a standard and imperative feature to have in any payment processor. Like tokenization, it protects information via encryption; however, this time the encryption occurs between a website’s server and an individual’s web browser. Without it, user data is vulnerable. Be wary of any payment processor that does not utilize this essential feature. It is especially important to nonprofits, which often have sensitive data.

Checkout Buttons

Did you know that your "checkout" or "donate now" button can be a very effective call to action? Creating a button that leads directly to the payment processing page can save people the frustration of having to click around and look for it. It also grabs their attention and encourages them to make a contribution. It should always stand out in some way, whether that be because it is large, bright in color, or placed in a pertinent location, like at the top and bottom of every page.

Pro Tip: Remember that when choosing the right third-party processor for you, it is always best to brainstorm what factors are most important to you and your organization. Going into any big decision with a pre-defined list of priorities will make the process of narrowing it all down a lot easier. 


#1: Dharma

Dharma is great for businesses that want an online donation payment gateway. It is a socially conscious platform that requires you to pay a flat fee on top of your regular interchange fees. It has a mobile app that allows you to access your transaction history and take payments, both in-person and online.


Dharma is streamlined, simple, and easy to use. The company donates to nonprofits, which is awesome to see from a payment processing tool. They furthermore do what they can to work with socially responsible vendors, which may be particularly attractive to nonprofits. Dharma integrates with Clover, which can bring a more sophisticated POS system to the table.


Dharma can be a little pricier than its competitors if you are not pulling in a relatively large amount of money per month. You may also have to purchase the mobile card reader from them for $149, whereas some of your other options include one for free. 

Transaction Fees & Price

Usually, the service has a monthly fee of $20. It also charges a per-transaction fee, which runs to be 0.15%, plus $.07 cents for in-store transactions. Of course, that does not include the interchange fees that the credit card industry itself charges, but you cannot avoid those at any rate. If you process more than $100,000 a month, it offers lower rates, making it an attractive option if your online income is high.


#2: Stripe

Stripe is a payment gateway software solution that is reliable and uncomplicated; it contains all of the most important features of a third-party processor. It is also the number one payment processor on the market of this type.

top-5-nonprofit-payment-solutions-for-2022-stripeOliver is carefully comparing his options when it comes to payment solutions.


Stripe accepts dozens of payment methods, and it works best if you accept online payments, which is clearly important for your nonprofit. It also has integrations for "buy now, pay later" services, allowing people to make larger contributions at one time.


If Stripe is your main payment processor, your in-person retail experience may be pretty limited. Stripe is known to give complex error messages that require outside intervention to address, yet its customer service is reported to be frequently lacking. 

Stripe typically charges 2.9% + $.30 in processing fees for each transaction; however, if more than 80% of your incoming funds are tax-deductible donations, you can apply for discounted Stripe processing fees. 


#3: Springly

Springly (that’s us!) is an all-in-one membership management software with a full payment processor built into the interface. Most steps are automated (including payment processing, sending of receipts, and updating your CRM with the latest payments), easy to navigate, and aimed at helping you increase membership engagement. You can also chat with an expert just about any time you need to.


Choosing an all-in-one option allows you to focus on your campaigns and the day-to-day life of your organization. It tackles the complex process of choosing a payment processor for you. Springly uses Adyen, a European payment company, to process all transactions. Ayden allows businesses to accept e-commerce, mobile, and POS payments.


If you already have a nonprofit software, it may take a lot of legwork to switch to a new one. Plus, you may not want to go with an all-in-one membership management company if you already have your website and features established with the most important tasks delegated to your team.

Springly starts at $39 a month. It includes all the important features: CRM, memberships, donations, accounting, emailing, website creation, and more. The payment provider fees are 2.9% + $.30 per transaction, but Springly does not take any additional fees. 


#4: Braintree

Braintree is another great payment platform that offers maximum flexibility. Not only do they enable the processing of credit and debit card payments online, Braintree also offers card readers for in-person transactions.


This third-party processor offers a month-to-month subscription, which is great in the event that you are still exploring different options for the best payment gateway for charities. They are known for being very transparent, with a low likelihood of having hidden fees. 


If you want to use a different processor with Braintree’s payment gateway, you will have to pay an additional $49 a month + $.10 per transaction. Some users report trouble with customer service.

For nonprofits, the rate can be 2.2% plus $.30 per transaction. This is a slightly discounted rate, as the percentage is usually 2.9%. Different cards are charged at different rates, but this is fairly common among payment processors.


#5: Square

Square is an online e-commerce platform that allows you to manage a variety of sales channels and take payments online. It is an end-to-end payment processor for merchant services, meaning it does not obtain anything from another party, and handles the entire process from beginning to end. Square is highly encrypted and PCI compliant; using its hardware ensures that customers’ card information never touches an independent device. 

top-5-nonprofit-payment-solutions-for-2022-squareSalma has decided which payment solution she's going for!


Square is simple, easy to use, and highly secure. It provides free tools for selling online, and affordable chip card readers for card-present transactions. It does not require a contract, and the interface is very user-friendly. 


Square is not necessarily ideal for large nonprofits.  They have higher fees for large businesses, and there have also been some complaints about account stability issues. 

If you are a smaller organization, the fees for Square are standard at 2.6% + $.10 per swipe for all major credit cards, with no additional charges. There will not be hidden fees, and there are no monthly fees. There are custom rates available if your income is more than $250,000 per year. 


Final Thoughts

Regardless of the route you choose to accommodate your payment processing needs, be sure to do some comparison work. Ask a lot of questions about the security features, the pricing, and the circumstances under which any answers you receive are likely to change. 

Some of the third-party processing platforms listed here offer the bare bones, which is great if that is all you need. Others, like the Springly, offer an all-in-one solution to nonprofit management. Which one you choose is going to depend primarily on the needs of your nonprofit, so you will want to define all of your goals clearly at the outset of your project. 

Ultimately, all of the options provided in this article are online payment systems for nonprofits so, in that respect, you really cannot go wrong.

With all the facts in front of you, it should be relatively easy to figure out which payment processor will best serve your needs!


Springly is trusted by over 20,000 nonprofits to help them run their organizations on a daily basis. Try it, test it, love it with a 14-day free trial!


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