Originally Published on July 22nd, 2019. Updated for July 7th, 2020.
Amazon Smile is a great addition to your efforts to make money for your nonprofit. This program lets customers shop on Amazon and then donates 0.5 percent of eligible purchases to their charity of choice. Keep reading to find out more about the Amazon Smile program for nonprofits.
How it Works for Nonprofits
Registered U.S. public charitable 501(c)(3) organizations in good standing with the IRS can register on Amazon Smile for free. Charities maintain eligibility through the Amazon Smile Participation Agreement.
How To Register
It is easy to set up an Amazon Smile profile for your organization. First, you need to provide a valid email address to Amazon. Then, you need to appoint either yourself or one of your staff members to serve as the account administrator. Most organizations choose someone who has the authority to manage financial matters.
You must register your organization before you can receive the funds that people donate to it. Registering is easy. On the Amazon Smile site, search for your organization via its name or EIN, select it, and then create an administrator account. Submit your organization’s bank account information and finally, verify the account using a voided check or a bank statement. It’s that easy!
Amazon Smile Marketing Tools
Once your organization is registered you can access a number of useful marketing tools that will ensure your supporters can support you. Sign in to your organization’s org.amazon.com account and click on “Marketing Tools”. You’ll receive a link to a customized AmazonSmile landing page for your organization. You can use the link in emails, newsletters and on social media. You’ll also have access to a downloadable website banner and social sharing widgets as well. Now, you can put your marketing plan to work.
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How Amazon Smile Works for Consumers
Customers first need to sign up to use Amazon Smile. They can complete this step by visiting smile.amazon.com and signing in with their Amazon credentials. Then, they can choose the charity they want to make a donation to. After that, it’s shop as usual. As long as an item is eligible for Amazon Smile, your nonprofit gets a donation. Most products on Amazon are eligible and it costs nothing for a customer to be a part of the program.
Now, people shopping on Amazon can be charitable without breaking the bank. Tell your employees, those who volunteer for your organization, and anyone else you can think of to sign up and join in. Make a push to get people to sign up before Prime Day, to maximize those sales for your nonprofit.
Getting Your Donations
Amazon pays out donations on a quarterly basis and places the funds in your account via electronic bank transfer. They do not mail paper checks.
Amazon Smile is the ideal tool for Amazon customers to make a difference to an organization they know and trust. Do not let your organization miss out on this easy way to pick up donations that will help it function and flourish. If you want help setting up an Amazon Smile account for your organization, check out this FAQ we wrote.
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