You understand the basic concept of matching gifts. You know that in a matching gift program a company will match donations made by employees to a range of nonprofits.
That’s the general definition and a good start. However, in order to succeed in acquiring matched gifts you’ll need to understand the nitty-gritty of the program stipulations.
Well, here is the nitty-gritty!
The amount that a company will match is based on a combination of the matching gift ratios, maximums, and minimums.
Let’s break those three components down based on what we typically see in matching gift programs:
This is a lot easier to understand than it sounds.
Companies determine how much to match for employee donations based on a preset ratio. The majority of companies match donations at a 1:1 ratio, or dollar for dollar.
In the case of a 1:1 ratio, if an employee gives your nonprofit $100 and her employer agrees to match it, you’ll end up with $100 from the company for a total of $200. You’ve doubled your donation!
Although you can expect to see a lot of 1:1 ratios, they can range from .5:1 all the way up to 4:1. Ratios are typically standardized across all employee types, but sometimes a company will stipulate that, for example, part-time employees or retirees or executives will have different match ratios.
- Puget Sound Energy matches donations at a .5:1 rate.
- Apple matches donations at a 1:1 rate.
- Soros Fund Management matches donations from partners at a 2:1 rate and employees at a 3:1 rate.
Maximum matches have quite the range. You’ll see upper limits from $1,000-$15,000 on average, but there are plenty of matches that are outside that scope.
- The Avis Budget Group matches donations up to $100 annually per employee.
- Merck matches donations up to $30,000 annually per employee.
- General Electric matches donations up to $25,000 annually per employee.
Usually, a company will set a donation minimum, meaning that if a donor’s contribution falls below that set amount, the company will not match the gift. Most commonly, that dollar amount is $25, but it can range from $1-$100.
- Harris Corporation matches employee donations as long as they’re greater than $10.
- LyondellBasell Industries matches employee donations of $100 or more.
Combine all three of these factors and you’ll be ready to predict what your nonprofit will rake in from those lucrative matching gifts!
Keep reading our additional resources for more matching gift tips and tricks:
- Matching gift Program FAQs: Have a question about matching gifts you need answered? This article covers some of the most common queries about matched giving.
- Matching Gift Software Vendors: If you’re an organization looking for tools to market matching gifts or a corporation searching for matching gift management software, this article is for you! We’ve compiled a list of top vendors to help your philanthropy program succeed.
- Top Matching Gift Companies: Brush up on the top matching gift companies to see how much your organization could raise.