Excellent for Most Non-Profits
At a prior non-profit, I switched them from Raiser's Edge (desktop) to Bloomerang. I gained a ton of features and saved quite a bit. The conversion was painless. I've only had to contact support a few times and they have always been extremely helpful.
In my current role, I set them up with Bloomerang as their first database.
I have also recommended it on multiple occasions.
Bloomerang is intuitive and easy to use.
Creating and reporting with custom field has never been easier and really allows you to customize it to your needs rather than using a standard field for something else.
The ability to create embedded forms is a lifesaver.
The integrated email capabilities save me from having to purchase another solution like Constant Contact. Plus, these interactions are automatically recorded in the donor/prospects data file.
The integrated DonorSearch option is convenient, useful and cost-effective.
If my organization ran a ton of events, I'm not sure this would be my optimal solution.
Currently, there is only one level of access - so I can't let a Board Member in to look around because any accidental changes they make would be permanent. I know that Bloomerang is working on this though.
Recommending bloomerang for Nonprofit Donor Management
We particularly like that we can easily manage all transactions and interactions seamlessly through integration with Outlook and sending emails, letters, etc. directly out of the system.
In the time that we have used bloomerang, we have appreciated a number of things about the software. The interface is extremely user friendly, we see regular product updates, there has been excellent customer service and communication, and the customer support through the chat interface is absolutely fantastic. Data has been easy to manage, reports are easy and reliable, and the ability to send beautiful emails, integrate with our website, and manage campaigns through the system is a real game changer for our organization. They worked hard with us to implement integration and onboarding in a reasonable time frame as well.
Occasionally, I will run into a more advanced feature that I'd like the system to do, but it's a rare occurrence. The one thing that I really wish bloomerang had was a more robust event ticketing function. The current interface doesn't do everything we would want to do, such as discount codes, and there are generally too many limitations to be able to use bloomerang for event ticketing.
Limited Options and Poor Customer Support
We sought this vendor because of its simple platform and reduced cost.
There are so many negative experiences, it's hard to identify what I liked least.
1. Revolving door customer support. Sales was very attentive, but after we purchased, we had difficulty getting ahold of our customer support. At one point she said she only worked 2 days a week, and then she called from a noisy street. Customer support didn't know about integrations with other products or setting the platform for automation, so it took weeks to allow her to put me in contact with engineering. He answered in a helpful email that took 5 minutes. Constant Contact support is much better than this - it doesn't matter to me who I get on the phone if they are knowledgeable and nice. Other platforms definitely have their support personnel better trained to answer questions.
2. Inadequate documentation for support - Videos, no Texts. As is common I think for startup companies, Bloomerang filmed short videos, but neglected proper text documentation. Our donation director would watch videos, then have trouble finding appropriate parts if she had any questions. Good tutorial documentation has text (that can be searched) and also screenshots to help people know what to do.
3. Poor default donation forms - the donation forms were ugly and not what someone would expect for a donation software. We had to go with MailChimp anyway and so there was the added cost. Bloomerang is definitely not a good option for emailing your list (others have mentioned).
4. Poor search of the donation database. If you wanted to select a list by a certain demographic - like donors of a certain amount or from a different state and some other feature and then email them, then Bloomerang couldn't do it. Although they will take some customization of the donor entry, we often found that adding different client details couldn't be searched. What is the point of adding more details if you can't find them later? We had used another platform with better search capabilities.
5. They do not search for duplicates or common typographical errors. As a result, you may be charged for a much higher number of people that are not truly in your database. Other mail lists like Constant Contact search for duplicates and also make corrections in email addresses (like a missed period between gmail and com). Nothing like that in Bloomerang.
6. They do not stand by their product. There is no customer satisfaction guarantee. Although we stated a desire to cancel the product entirely after the first year and asked the rep not to process our direct deposit, she did it anyway. Bloomerang told me that their policy is not to refund any money even though we will not be using their product at all. I was not contesting the 1 year that we already paid into, what I didn't want to do was pay for the future year because we would not use it because it had so many missing needs. Just using an integration with Mail Chimp would serve us better than Bloomerang. The communication piece with Bloomerang is extremely weak.
Response from Steven
Hello, Software Advice community! I'd like to address you, the reader of this review, directly rather than the author, whose review is largely punitive rather than constructive. Bloomerang absolutely stands by its product, which is why we did not allow this customer to break their signed agreement. We did, however, offer to pay for their third year in full.
You can see from the feedback on this site that a vast majority of our customers (whom this reviewer condescends) are satisfied.
I'd like to address individually some of the more dubious claims found in this review:
"Revolving door customer support."
Our support team currently consists of seven, US-based internal staff members. Their schedules are as follows (all times are eastern):
Jason: 9am-6pm M-F
James: 9am-6pm M-F
Diana: 830am-530pm M-F
Kristen: 830am-530pm M-F
Daniel: 11am-8pm M-F
Ron: 9am-3pm (3-5pm in another department) MTRF
Susie: 11am-4pm T-F
Our last turnover in the department was voluntary and occurred in June of 2014.
Furthermore, our phone system routes support calls to a dedicated phone on each of our reps's desk. They do not give our their cell phone numbers to customers and do not take calls after hours. Calling from "a noisy street" would have been impossible.
Lastly, our support reps are incredibly knowledgeable, not just in the Bloomerang product but in the nonprofit sector overall. For example, Ron has been working with nonprofits since 1987 when he became Executive Director of the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame. Kristen holds an MPA in Nonprofit Management from Indiana University.
"Inadequate documentation for support - Videos, no Texts."
This is simply untrue. Our knowledgebase is filled with text-based documentation, including screenshots and videos. Anyone wishing to see for themselves can visit https://bloomerang.freshdesk.com/support/home and log on with the username: "demo.wayne" and the password "grace123".
As for the rest, I invite anyone interested in Bloomerang to learn all that they can about the product's functionality by reaching out to customers who have left constructive reviews here. Transparency is one of our core values, and anyone wishing to discuss this review further - or any of our business practices - can reach out to me or our CEO, Jay Love, anytime day or night. Contact info is readily accessible on our website.
-- Steven Shattuck, VP of Marketing
Bloomerang has everything we need.
Bloomerang has changed how we keep track of almost everything and put it all into one place. We are very pleased with it, and we are still learning more good things.
Bloomerang has amazing customer service. As a small non-profit selecting our first DMS, we reviewed many and then took the plunge and signed up for Bloomerang. Our chats and emails asking for help always receive prompt responses from knowledgeable people. There is no substitute for that level of assistance. We also love the ability to customize our data and all of the other things that can be done with Bloomerang. We have left behind our old systems for keeping track of donations, volunteers, trainings, newsletters, and more!
We are getting better at creating reports that show what we want to track, but this is an area that feels a little convoluted, probably due to my lack of experience. I have received excellent help from Customer Service to get what I need, though. I have a feeling that the large number of steps it sometimes takes to create a report is necessary and can't be changed. I would also like a smoother way to keep track of people who sign up for a free class, and then to track who actually attends the class.
My experience with Bloomerang has been very positive.
I feel Bloomerang is a good donor management software and works very great the the size of our organization. It is easy to navigate and the customer support is timely and helpful. They are continuously improving the software.
My biggest negative is not really the software but my ability to keep up with the changes/improvements. For example we have the system for several years and built a lot of our emails using templates that were donor concentric at that time. When you need an email you just copy them and adjust the content for the new email. What I found during the pandemic is the current new templates give a fresh look. I had time to rebuild some of this communication.
I switched to Bloomerang after being with another database system for a little more than a year. I have never looked back and have recommended Bloomerang to so many other nonprofits in my area. I have never had a problem that couldn't be figured out or worked around.
The clean look, ease of use and ever-updating features are wonderful. The additional trainings on many topics related to non-profits are a bonus. I love that I never have to encounter the word "query" when running reports! I also appreciate that many features are automatically included so I don't feel "nickel and dimed" every time I need to integrate new features.
I wish there was an easy "shopping cart" feature that would integrate with my website so I could easily sell tickets to events without having to manually each purchase.
Great product for a growing organization
Bloomerang assists me to be a better fundraiser. Daily I am looking at who has donated and Bloomerang helps me customize the way in which i communicate with various constituents.
Bloomerang is easy to use. In a small organization, where one or two people are using Bloomerang, it's the perfect fit. Customer service and new integrations are also superb. It's a software that can grow with you organization.
At times, filtering can be an issue. Often time I have to freshen up my memory of how to drill down to get the information I am trying to assimilate.
Response from Bloomerang
Best development database for small to mid-size nonprofits
We needed a database that all employees could use with little training to do basic tasks. Other ones out there were too complex and we would have had to hire a database cordinator to only work with the application.
Over the last 4 years we have saved so much time by using Bloomerang. Resources are tight with a nonprofit our size and time is very valuable.
I am not a huge fan of the new email interface.
Great donor management system
Great experience since deployment. Important to have a skilled conversion specialist when you convert. Great customer service.
It’s ease of use, focus on retention and stewardship, online chat feature and continuous learning through Bloomerang Academy.
I wish it could globally change/edit and the write off feature worked better.
Our previous system was outdated. Bloomerang helped to step up our fundraising game in many areas.
Ease of use, easy to train, helpful customer service, visually appealing, custom reports
Limited capabilities on tribute gifts, hard to search constituents outside of name without building a custom report
Bloomerang helps grow your nonprofit each and every day
I am delighted with my use of the system and I'm glad we made the change from our prior CRM. Transparency for the administrative team, ease of use, and great integrations is bringing lots of benefits in terms of our records, protocols, and our ability to reach our donors.
Great flexibility allows easy customizations that helps you improve your CRM with usage and time. When combined with easy navigation and fast/accessible reports, Bloomerang is a system that is actually enjoyable to use. That's a big deal for your CRM! Remember - systems that are not used are systems that are not helpful.
The biggest frustration is that the constituent giving statistics via the "summary" views and "Timeline" views is set to the calendar year. For those of us who have a fiscal year different than the calendar year, this framing is not ideal. I've raised the point with the helpdesk and I am optimistic that the improvement will eventually be implemented. For the meantime, it requires patience and a mental "filter" to adjust accordingly.
Easy to use
Bloomerang helps my organization with our fundraising program - which accounts for 60% of our annual revenue. It has been extremely valuable and we are very happy with it.
Bloomerang has been a great product from the beginning. It was easy to convert to (just a few minor hiccups) and it's been easy to learn to use. Over the four years my organization has had Bloomerang as our donor database, we have had multiple staff changes affecting users of this program. In all cases, new staff members were able to learn and utilize Bloomerang's many features. The Chat feature is particularly helpful as it can walk us through complicated donor reports and mail merges.
It would be helpful to have more integrated event software that incorporates all aspects of managing an event, including auction item procurement, bidding and acknowledgment. We asked Bloomerang to provide us with details on their event add-on and never received a response. At this time we use Give Smart to support our events.
I selected Bloomerang and set it up as our database at two organizations and have used it daily for a total of 4.5 years. I have really enjoyed using it and it has suited our small fundraising shops well.
Some things I love about Bloomerang: its user-friendly design; great customer service; donation categorization structure; dashboard showing status of campaigns and donor retention rate; engagement meter and generosity meter; ability to easily make notes and save attachments to a donor record; ease of getting to donor records quickly; simple reporting functions; integration with online donation forms; and automatic inclusion of a recurring donation option on donation forms.
The biggest drawback I found with Bloomerang is the thank you letter feature. You can apply filters to create different thank you letters for different types of gifts, but the letters are exported as a PDF, which makes it difficult to fine-tune any of the verbiage. So if I need to edit a particular letter I have to go back to the donor record, edit it, and download the new letter.
The reporting is Amazing
I've had a great experience and I am really enjoying this CRM more and more as it integrates with so many third party apps.
The reporting feature is by far one of the best parts of this software. I can segment donors, analyze year over year data, and run fundraising to date reports with such ease. There is no need to export data and run analytics in excel when this software does it all for you. I am also a big fan of the bcc feature that allows me to append emails to donors directly to their constituent files.
As an arts and culture nonprofit, we have a membership component to our fundraising structure. I feel that bloomerang's ability to really provide for a membership program is weak. We've made it work with some custom fields but it's not ideal.
Great Donor Tracking Software
This software is very intuitive and easy to use. We switched from a more complicated product that staff wouldn't use consistently. Although it had more bells and whistles it was less useful because many staff members found it too difficult to enter and retrieve data.
There are some missing features that I would appreciate:
- a way of giving an easily visible summary of the most important things about a donor
- a virtual yellow sticky note to alert other users to important changes or updates
- a way of filtering out the Mass Emails from the more important interactions
- an easier way of getting to the earliest entries
Bloomerang for non profits
Having bloomerang has allowed us to be able to have all of our data in one place instead of having multiple spreadsheets in various places. It helps when finding information for potential donation requests and providing back up. I like that all employees can access information for all of our constituents in one place so we can tell who talked to who and when. It has helped to streamline many of our functions.
The ease of use of the software, getting to the necessary information is very easy. I also like the on-demand tutorials, this allows the user to reference something they don't know how to do and watch a live example. I also like the support chat feature, you never have to wait very long and they always assist with finding the best option.
The only feature that I struggle with is that you cannot use the event registration feature if there is no payment. I know they can fill out a form that we can add to our website, but there should be a way to allow the use of a registration form without payment.
Exceptional. The best ever experience I have had with a database product vendor.
1. Ease of use: Bloomerang has been easy to learn even for staff members with limited data base experience. Data pages are large and easy to read.Information on the home page is helpful. It is easy to manage and change settings.
2. Customer support: If having difficulty with any aspect of Bloomerang, customer support is only minutes away. I have never had to wait for a response to a requst for a chat. Futhermore, every customer support person provided easy to understand answers, was always friendly and never made me feel unimportant.
3. Always making improvements. The Bloomerang team provides an easy way to make suggestions for future improvements and they are always adding improvements. Plus they communicate well about the improvements.
4. Cost. At the time of our purchase, Bloomerang was a mid-priced option. I do not know how the price compares to other options now but if it is still a mid-range or higher option, it is worth every penny.
5. Reporting is very flexible.
6. The ability to link people in the database and combine them into households. This is very important for a school environment.
I really do not have any dislikes of Bloomerang. The reason is because if I ever have difficulties, I contact them and receive immediate assistance.
Fantastic simple donor mgt solution for small nonprofits
We have loved Bloomerang since our conversion 18 months ago. The fact that they continue to add features and request input from customers is great. Highly recommend the solution for other small organizations.
The ease of use and cloud-based platform make this solution the perfect donor management system for our small nonprofit ministry. We love the key features and the team is terrific.
Since it is a "newer" solution, it isn't as feature-rich as some long-time industry players, but that also means it isn't overly complex, which is a plus for us.
Great Product for a Small Business
We have had great success with Bloomerang. It has allowed us to become more independent in our finances and really get the information that we need, when we need it. This is invaluable to us, as we have a lot of volunteers that do things for us. We love our volunteers, but still have a business to run and when we have a need, we need to get it figured out quickly.
The software is easy to use, even for entry-level staff with little computer background. I have a few staff that use it to record donations, and it is very easy to show them how it works and what to do. It is also internet-based, so that we can access it from anywhere. It does everything that we need it to, though we are still learning some of the more challenging things like labels, year-end letters, e-mails, etc. The program keeps great records and we can print reports based on whether the information is a transaction or a person. We can also pull information from specific events, campaigns, etc to let us know how much we actually raised from that time period. That helps us budget for the next fiscal year and set goals for future campaigns. That is very helpful.
The software can get very complicated when you start getting into filters. I have yet to figure out how to to get the date the funds were given to us on their thank you letter, instead of the date that I am putting the funds in. Labels are very difficult and at times the reports don't include all the information that we are looking for, and I have to run multiple reports that we add together. I would also like to have a client database attached to it, so that we can run all our programs from one program.
Best Bang for Your Buck
Bloomerang handles not only our team's contact management but is also the financial hub for all of our donations. It is now a tool essential for our department's analytics and fundraising team. We can't live without it!
I like that this software is extremely user-friendly. There is a multitude of tutorials, articles, and narratives of explanation of functions of this product. You will never question how to use this product!
I do wish this product had more add-on features such as texting, social media tracking, and a mobile app.
The best option for small nonprofits
The fact that we can manage our contact database, membership database, donations, and email marketing all in one place has been transformative for our organization. We were previously using Constant Contact, generic spreadsheets, and Razor's Edge separately to do these functions and we wasted a significant amount of time trying to force these tools to do what we needed and to play nicely together. Customer service and tech support have always been available for even the silliest question, and we've been able to get volunteers from teens to senior citizens confidently entering data for us in a very short amount of time. The set-up period was well-organized: looking back, I wish we had done a few things differently, but hindsight is always 20/20.
This software is easy to navigate and intuit. It is built with small businesses & nonprofits in mind, which is obvious in it's design. It is great to be able to track so much data about our constituents in one place, as well as to link that data with transactions, contact information, and even email communication. It's not perfect, but it's improving all the time and is so much better than the other many options we tried!
The email builder (event after the most recent update) is pretty primitive and does not provide all of design the flexibility we'd like - we're an arts organization and our visual branding is really important to us. We wish that there were ways to import formatted blocks from one template into another, to change the background color of a single block, or to manipulate the code more easily. I also wish that we had the options to separate types of transactions (we receive payments for art sales as well as donations) more easily so that constituents' purchases could be separated from their charitable giving.
Bloomerang is AMAZING!
Our previous data was kept in an Access Data Base (It was HORRIBLE) Since switching to Bloomerang I've had no issues tracking donors, reaching out to first time donors and our repeat donors by having reports to run at my fingertips. It's simple to enter new information into and so incredibly user friendly for someone who didn't know much about data bases. Right from the beginning when I was researching software programs I found the sales people to be super friendly, non-pushy and incredibly helpful in building my presentation to the board. Hands down it was easiest software to navigate and can do so much more than I've even used it for.
User-friendly; Easy to learn; Awesome customer assistance when it's been needed; prompt responses; dedicated employees (my original sales rep (Gabriel) STILL emails me a couple times in a year to see how things are going and if there's anything I need... :) ) Very easy to get almost any type of a report I need-quickly and effortlessly. I would recommend it to any agency looking to purchase donor software (and have). Sales rep was NEVER pushy but extremely helpful in assisting me with "selling" this product to my Board of Directors. Love all the webinars and teaching tools in the library that I can use if I want.
I just don't have the time in my every day job to use this software to it's full potential. (That's on me, not the product though...)
I wish it did grant tracking too.
Bloomerang Shines In My Toolkit
The transition was very smooth and I was immediately able to use the features to do my work. Training guides were easy to understand; there was very little ramp-up time required. I was updating and adding constituent records in no time. Creating and printing acknowledgement letters, and sharing reports with my team was accomplished in short time with professional and informative results. I am a one-person shop and Bloomerang allows me to manage my time well and to deliver results.
Ease of adding and updating constituent records - very little time required to master these skills.
Report writing simplified
Email templates easy to use
Retention report updates daily and I see it as soon as I sign on
Flexibility for me to use anywhere
As a new user, edit options were not available for acknowledgment letters with out re-running letters. I am having a hard time identifying what I did not like as I really enjoy using Bloomerang.
Input was given to tech support and software changes were made based on user expectations.
Great for Small Teams!
Overall it's been mostly a positive experience. It is definitely an improvement over our old system (DonorPerfect) and I really enjoy using it.
The reporting abilities and interface is very easy to use even for beginners, very intuitive overall. The customer chat is also really helpful in figuring out the reporting so that makes it even easier. The only issue would be organizing existing reports as they really don't have a good way of doing that yet, but they are trying to improve it. The system itself is also easy to navigate and they are constantly trying to make it better. I also like that the email features are built in which makes it easier to report on results. I also like a lot of the free webinars.
While I like the system overall, it needs a bit more work on core functionality before they carried away on new features. Sometimes they make features that are very one-size-fits-all which often leaves us out. We know what's best for our org, so sometimes we have to opt out of something if they don't let us customize it enough to work for our donors.
Best Product for the Price
Perfect. Bloomerang is exactly what my team was looking for and continues to grow and improve daily.
This software is extremely user-friendly. Everything is explained in pop-ups, videos, articles, and by the support team. The system could be picked up and used by anyone on our team.
I wish there were add ons like social media listening or text to give. I also wish there was an app. But these features would cost more, and the low cost is one of the best things about this product!