Sanford Levings

"Hi, I’m Sanford Levings, President of MinistryCFO and author of this blog. The purpose of our blog is to share with you information and insights that we gather from working with and listening to our clients and partners, located throughout the country." read more

Giving Trends – Part III – Tell All Report


(Part 3 of 7-Part Series)

Your church management software should provide you with what we are going to refer to as the Tell-All Donor Report. This report is going provide you with a mountain of information and insights. This report should be easy for you to pull.

The Tell-All Donor Report that we recommend is the following:

  • Pull the Donor Report by individual donor covering the most recent 12 – month period in your church.

  • Subdivide the Report by month.  (You should have 13 columns comprising each month of the year, plus a total for the year).

  • If you haven’t already, style the Report in landscape format.

  • Sort the Report from highest to lowest donation amount

  • Lastly, move this Donor Report to an Excel spreadsheet.  (Delete the first column listing the donor names if you are uncomfortable about knowing this information).

An oversimplified snapshot of your report will look something like this:


Now, get three different colored markers and fill in the report as follows:

Tithers: Mark in Yellow

  1. Those donors who have given 3 out of the last 5 months

  2. Average monthly donation must be $500 or more

Sporadic Donors:  Mark in Orange

  1. Average monthly donation must be $50 or more

  2. But they haven’t given 3 out of the last 5 months

Marginal Donors: Mark in Blue

All other donors
Here’s how that same Donor Report now looks:


What do you see?  With the exception of Donor #8, there is a distinct cutoff between tithers and sporadic donors.  There is a clear cutoff between sporadic and marginal donors as all of the marginal donors land at the bottom of the report.

Tomorrow, we’re going to provide you with strategies and tactics on how to approach tithers, those in the yellow.  Perhaps you can provide us with some additional ideas as well, as we invite you to participate with us and we certainly welcome your input.

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