Interview with Alexander Coleridge, Founder of TapSimple

TapSimple is a feel-good fundraising platform, founded in 2019, using technology to help charities fundraise in an increasingly cashless society.

Our first product, The Clip, is a device that enables contactless and chip & pin donations when paired with the TapSimple app. The Clip has been proven to increase donation engagement and the amount donated by donors. It is powered by a sophisticated reporting dashboard that can be used to track and analyse donation patterns and behaviour, and manage fundraising activities.

In 2019, for example, we supported Children With Cancer (CWC) UK at their annual ball with contactless and chip & pin donation devices, helping raise several hundred thousand pounds in donations and pledges. The charity’s finance team was able to track the amount raised live from the balcony and monitor as our system seamlessly captured Gift Aid information.

We recently launched a new product to further support charities fundraising during the pandemic- our Virtual Fundraising and Ticketing service helps charities connect remotely with fundraisers and raise money online, much like Zoom or Skype, but with the ability to donate directly from the page.

It’s been wonderful to see the platform used successfully by many charities already, including the NSPCC, Children with Cancer UK and Christian Aid. Charities have been hosting all sorts of innovative events via the TapSimple virtual events platform, from quizzes, to supporter Q&As, virtual cocktail making classes and even a duck race.
TapSimple | TapSimple

How did you come up with the idea for the company?

Myself and my school friend Tom Montague worked together on a campaign to tackle homelessness in London and we saw there was a real need for technology solutions to help improve the fundraising process. There were so many points at which, during my fundraising experiences, I was frustrated by the opportunities I felt were being missed when potential donors couldn’t contribute because they weren’t carrying cash.

Historically, charities of all sizes have suffered from outdated technology. You can see ineffective fundraising and an absence of innovation around those processes, as well as a lack of data management capabilities. Traditional fundraising methods were beginning to fail as donations via mobile devices or online channels become more popular, yet only 4% of charities were using contactless payment systems.

That’s why Tom and I launched TapSimple in 2018, to help provide charities with the tools they need to innovate and adapt.


How has the need for TapSimple’s tech changed during the pandemic?

The pandemic has had a devastating impact on lives and livelihoods globally and has intensified our need for charitable services. Unfortunately, many sectors have been hard hit, and this includes the charity sector that we so rely on. Over half of charities have lost income from fundraising during the pandemic as a result of changing behaviours with populations in lockdown, as well as a further decline in the use of cash. The WHO itself advised against the use of cash for hygiene reasons during the pandemic.

Charities are, therefore, looking for alternative ways of raising funds and connecting with audiences. We’ve found a growing appetite for our Virtual Events platform, with charities interested in how they can leverage this to reach wider and geographically more disparate audiences than they might have targeted before, and how they can prompt people to donate directly during those events at the touch of a button.

What can we hope to see from TapSimple in the future?

All aspects of our platform are built with our Dashboard at the centre, and we are looking forward to continuing to build out suite of services into an increasingly powerful “one stop shop” for charities. There are exciting opportunities ahead to fulfil our mission to boost charitable giving, particularly as new technology changes the charity landscape.

In the meantime, every week we are working with more UK charities to host more Virtual Events on our platform so that we can support charities’ needs throughout the pandemic, and we are currently working on a partnership with a major supermarket chain to place our contactless Chip & Pin devices in stores, helping the retail brand raise funds for its charity partner by providing shoppers with a safe and easy way to donate.

Voluntary organisations need all the support they can get at the moment, but we are confident that with the right tools they will be able not only to adapt, but to thrive.
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