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Set up donations & appeal Print Article


Supporters can donate money outright online in the Giving Center or during the event on mobile bidding devices. You set the goal, describe your cause, and customize a button to appear on the Home screen. Donors press the green donation button, select the amount they want to donate, and, voila, your cause has raised more money! Appeals or calls to action are most effective when you have an emcee or auctioneer on stage soliciting donations with a BidPal scoreboard projecting the total money raised in the background.

Please click on links below to jump to sections:
      How to add/edit
      Appeal best practices
      Appeal sample script
      How to donate


Log into myBidPal Planner and navigate to Packages > Manage Packages. 

Click Add to create a new package or click on a package in the Package List to edit an existing package.

Add / Edit Donation Package

On the Package Edit page, populate the following fields on the General tab:

Enter: What's this?
Number Unique numeric identifier for the package
Name Name or brief title of the package
Photo Photo of the package. Click Choose File or navigate to Packages > Import Photos to bulk upload. NOTE: A filling thermometer will display in lieu of a package photo if you display the goal.

Detailed information about the package, including any notes or restrictions

Tip! You can use HTML in this field to embed video, images, hyperlinks, or do basic text formatting (bold, italics, etc.) that end users will see when looking at packages on Giving Center or the mobile auction. Note that if you plan to print guest-facing tent cards or gift certificates, you may wish to do so before adding your HTML, as reports do not render HTML encoding nicely.

Donor Not relevant for Donations
Apply Sales Tax Not relevant for Donations
Notes Enter any additional information you want to track; for internal use only
User-Defined 1 Custom field that may be used if you buy a custom report or custom scoreboard
User-Defined 2 Custom field that may be used if you buy a custom report or custom scoreboard
Auction Mode Type of auction; select Donation
Show Current Total Check the box if you'd like guests to see the total amount of money raised
Show Donation Goal Check the box if you'd like guests to see the donation goal, the thermometer graphic, and the amount of money needed to reach the goal
Goal Amount The amount of money you hope to raise. Only visible if showing the donation goal.
Start Amount Enter the amount of money already raised for the cause if you are continuing a fundraiser. The start amount is factored into donation proceeds on mobile bidding devices and on scoreboards. Only visible if showing the donation goal.
Allow Anonymous Donations Check the box if you'd like guests to be able to donate anonymously when donating via mobile device or Kiosk during the Mobile Auction. Anonymous donors will not be thanked by name on donation scoreboard slides, and you will be able to review which guests donated anonymously via the Donation Proceeds and Excel Export - Donations reports.
Donation Style Choose the style you want: (A) Open allows guests to donate any amount of money using an open keypad. No custom buttons display. (B) Custom Button allows you to define set giving levels or increments. Guests see a list of buttons, with each corresponding to an amount. This is the most popular option. See screenshot above. (C) Fixed prompts guests to select the number of donations they want to make at a fixed increment. If the increment is $50, then a guest enters 1 to donate $50, 2 to donate $100, etc.
Order Choose how you want the giving levels/custom button amounts to be sorted - Descending, Ascending, or Natural (i.e. the order you entered). Only visible if you selected the Custom Button Donation Style.
Amounts 1-10 Enter up to 10 donation amounts or giving levels that appear as custom buttons. For example, enter $1,000 or $25. See mobile bidding device screenshot above. Only visible if you selected the Custom Button Donation Style.
Other Allowed Check this box to display an "Other" button that allows guests to donate any amount of money using an open keypad. If using, you only get up to 9 custom buttons. Only visible if you selected the Custom Button Donation Style.
Fixed Increment The amount of each donation. Only visible if you selected the Fixed Donation Style.

Make sure that the following fields are set correctly on the Visibility tab: 

Enter: What's this?
Show in Giving Center Check the box to make the donation package visible in the Giving Center
Featured in Giving Center Check the box to include the donation package in the scrolling "Featured Items" panel on the Giving Center home screen
Enable Online Bidding Check the box to enable donations to the cause in the Giving Center, pre-event or post-event
Show on Scoreboard Check the box if you'd like to make the donation package visible on scoreboards
Show in Printed Catalog Check the box to include the package in the printed auction catalog reports (Reports > View Reports > Items and Packages)
Override Auction Times Leave unchecked if donating to the cause should start and end with all other Donation packages (default). Check the box to specify alternate start and end times.
Package Start Time If overriding auction times, set when the package will first be open for donations
Package End Time If overriding auction times, set when the donating window for the package will close

When finished, click Save to return to the Package List, Save & New to enter a new package, Save & Next to see the next package already in the system, Clone to create an identical package, or Cancel to discard changes.



  • View data best practices for general package recommendations.
  • Pick your cause: Raise money to pay for a tangible item or a specific mission.
  • Select the right emcee and emotional appeal speaker/subject/video. Limit any videos to 3 minutes.
  • Schedule appeal for when you will maximize guest involvement.
    • For a captive audience, schedule your appeal immediately after the silent auction end, just before the live auction, or after a few live items have sold.
    • If you plan to have entertainment, make sure the donation appeal is finished before the live band or performer takes the stage. 
    • If your event takes place on a weeknight, be respectful of your guests' time. Complete the appeal early for those who need to go home.
  • Set a realistic goal.
  • Use a BidPal scoreboard.
    • View donation scoreboard options.
    • Consider seeding the total with pre-pledged donations and/or matching donations.
    • If you are concerned that your big donors may prefer not to be thanked by name on your scoreboard, consider enabling anonymous donations for your donation package(s).
  • Make it easy.
    • Have your emcee explain how to donate using BidPal.
    • Explain the different donation levels and how that will benefit your cause.
    • Have volunteers prepared to collect paper donations or place donations on behalf of guests who don't have a smartphone.
  • Thank your donors using the BidPal scoreboard or through emcee announcements.

Check out our blog posts for more great donation appeal tips:



"Let's help support our mission for [Organization Name]!"
"Everyone please pick up your mobile phone (or BidPal device)."
"We’ll go one step at a time so everyone can give to and support [Organization Name]!"

"Right now is when you can have the greatest impact for [Organization Name]. Every donation counts and if everyone gave just $___ we can surpass our goal of $___ for [Organization Cause]!"

"Please listen carefully. We want to make sure everyone has the opportunity to participate and give tonight. Please press the green [Make A Donation] button on the Home screen and you'll see a listing of donation levels."

[At this point, your auctioneer or emcee can call out each individual donation levels OR let the Scoreboard revenues increase in real-time while they thank the donors by name.]

"Press the “other” (increment) button to donate any amount of money!"

"Please focus your attention on the Scoreboard tonight. Let's watch it grow and exceed our goal!"

[Finish the donation appeal with a final request for any additional donations and a sincere thank you to your guests. Let them know that their gifts will make a huge difference.]


Make A Donation Instructions Slide

If you'd like to display these 'How to Donate' instructions to your guests, you may use the following Powerpoint files:


NOTE: These slides are separate from any BidPal Scoreboard(s) you are using. As such, you may wish to run them on a separate device from the one being used to run your scoreboard and then switch inputs if the slides and the scoreboard are to be displayed on the same screen.

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