How To Design Fundraising Event Displays That Boost Donations

Organizing a successful fundraising event requires meticulous planning and attention to detail. One crucial aspect that can significantly impact the engagement and end results of your event is the presentation of auction items and other fundraising materials. The proper use of fundraising display merchandisers can elevate the experience for supporters and directly influence donation amounts for the charity. shopPOPdisplays has the key elements you need in order to captivate, direct, and communicate thoroughly with attendees. Read on to learn our ideas for making sure your next fundraising event reaches its full potential.

fundraising display

Maximize Space

A well-designed fundraising display begins with a well thought out layout that maximizes the available space to create an organized and inviting atmosphere. While particularly large auctions hosted at outdoor venues will require more signage to direct attendees, smaller events benefit from impactful and engaging design elements. Either way, figuring out how to utilize your space efficiently lays a solid foundation for the rest of your event.

Envision yourself as the attendee. The first thing you do upon arriving at a fundraising event is check in or register, so as an organizer, you’ll want to set up clear signage that directs people where to go immediately upon entrance. From there, you can use a combination of tables, pedestals and ropes to guide people through a well-organized path, which prevents overcrowding and confusion.

A common misstep is when hosts create specific zones for each category of auction items. By breaking up similar items throughout the event space, you actually incentivize people to browse everything and keep them from directly comparing side-by-side items. Utilizing the perimeter of the event space ensures there’s plenty of room for guests to mingle without any blockers, whereas forming rows (while uniform) minimizes space between tables. You can also maximize square footage by utilizing wall-mounted sign holders to get across important messages. Be sure to distribute auction items out evenly on tables to avoid choice overload and keep attendees from crowding in certain areas. Higher price point goods should be mixed in with those of lower price points to keep attendees moving along.

Don’t forget to create an efficient check-out area, where winning bids can be processed quickly to ensure a smooth end to the night and positive last impression. You can even repurpose the pop-up counters used for check-in to work for check-out, if the goal is to save on space – just remember to switch up the signage.

Choosing the Right Fundraising Display Elements

By thoughtfully curating the specific elements of your fundraising display, you can engage attendees, highlight auction offerings, and create an immersive experience that encourages generous contributions to your cause. Here is what we recommend:

  1. Step and repeat backdrops – A strategic way to blend branding and participant engagement, these logo-printed backdrops serve as a captivating focal point for photo opportunities and boost the professionalism of the event. The shareable moments also amplify the event’s reach on social media.
  2. Banners and flags – Particularly smart for outdoor events, banners and flags guide participants towards different sections and activities. Customizing them with specific colors and your event logo also reinforces branding and messaging, creating a cohesive look.
  3. Table covers – Tables are such an important component of fundraising displays, whether you’re using them to showcase auction items or to stage promotional materials and handouts. Customized, matching tablecloths and covers used throughout the event space will keep these foundational pieces looking streamlined and professional.
  4. Flat packed displays –  Being able to easily build and break down your display merchandisers is critical for temporary spaces, which makes flat-packed displays a must for fundraising events. Set up a portable wooden counter at the entrance or checkout area, or use collapsible acrylic display cases to showcase specialty auction items. They’re so easy to store between events.
  5. Display pedestals – Pedestals provide a raised platform to showcase select items with visual appeal. They accentuate the significance of whatever is placed on top of them and offer better viewing angles for potential donors, which elicits a deeper connection to the showcased pieces.
  6. Podiums, pulpits and lecterns – Having a proper place to speak during fundraising events is so important. A podium offers a professional place to put your notes while delivering critical speeches. The more professional you look, the more confident you feel while speaking, and confidence is key to capturing the attention of potential donors.
  7. Ballot box – Clear acrylic raffle ticket boxes offer a safe, attractive place for people to place their bids. The transparent versions encourage more participation, as people can see what’s inside and either try to play the odds or add more support to certain items. Visually seeing the entries accumulate certainly adds to the anticipation of the event.
  8. Acrylic Boxes – Functional and visually appealing, acrylic boxes can make an event when used properly, and there’s really no wrong way to incorporate them. Use the ones with locking lids to secure smaller luxury items and re-imagine others as part of your decorative centerpieces or modern entrance.
  9. Acrylic risers – By lifting auction items up on acrylic risers, you add interesting height and dimension that naturally draws attendees’ eyes. They keep everything organized and easy to view, even on tables brimming with a variety of items.

Utilize Clear Labeling

Easy-to-read, attention-grabbing and strategically placed signage is a necessity when it comes to your fundraising event. When executed well, it helps communicate important information to attendees, guides them through the event and promotes the cause.

Placing signs at or near the entrance of your event is a great way to direct and greet attendees as they arrive. You can use floor standing sign holders for this purpose, as they’re at eye-level and can be easily moved around to the optimal spot. Portable signage has the potential to act as both a traffic conductor and information hub at once – it can be used to display the schedule of events (like order of guest speakers, performances and other key moments), while also subconsciously helping attendees navigate throughout the venue.

Don’t underestimate the value of vertical space that walls provide in smaller indoor venues- wall-mounted sign holders allow you to maximize the fundraising display area without overcrowding the floor. Use yours to communicate stories to potential donors about how the charity has impacted people’s lives or give a nod to your sponsors. This is a great way to build and continue to strengthen your relationships.

When it comes to the actual auction items, it’s imperative to clearly label each offering and provide a thorough description in order to elicit stronger participation and bidding. Countertop sign holders display the necessary information in a clean, professional way and can easily be reused for your next event.

Always remember to align and coordinate every component of your fundraising display to the theme of the event. Whether it’s a specific color scheme, design or message, a cohesive presentation enhances the overall atmosphere and creates a fundraising event that’s special and memorable.