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Elevate Your Fundraising Auctions: Focus on Impact, Not Deals

Are your fundraising auctions starting to resemble yard sales? While it's tempting to offer individual items at bargain prices, fundraising is about more than getting a "deal." It's an opportunity for donors to contribute to a cause they care about. To enhance your fundraising efforts, consider packaging individual items together to create more lucrative auction lots. In this blog post, we'll explore why this strategy can make your auctions more impactful and how to implement it effectively.

The Problem with Individual Items

When fundraising auctions feature individual items sold separately, it can create a transactional atmosphere where attendees focus on finding bargains rather than supporting the cause. This approach may lead to lower bids and a missed opportunity to maximize fundraising potential. Additionally, selling items individually may not highlight their full value or impact, as donors may need to fully grasp how their contribution fits into the bigger picture.

The Power of Auction Lots

Packaging individual items together to create auction lots offers several advantages:

1. Increased Perceived Value: Auction lots with multiple items or experiences bundled together often have a higher perceived value than individual items. This can encourage higher bids and increase fundraising revenue.

2. Storytelling Opportunity: Auction lots allow you to craft a narrative or theme around the collection of items, creating a compelling story that resonates with donors and emphasizes the impact of their contribution.

3. Enhanced Exclusivity: Unique or curated auction lots can create a sense of exclusivity, enticing donors looking for special experiences or items not readily available elsewhere.

4. Showcasing Impact: By grouping items, you can showcase how each contribution, no matter how small, contributes to a larger goal or initiative, emphasizing the collective impact of donors' contributions.

How to Create Impactful Auction Lots

To create impactful auction lots, consider the following tips:

1. Curate Thoughtfully: Select items or experiences that complement each other and align with your audience's interests. Aim for variety to appeal to a broader range of donors.

2. Tell a Story: Craft a compelling narrative or theme around each auction lot to engage donors emotionally and highlight the impact of their contribution.

3. Highlight Value: Clearly communicate the total value of the auction lot, including any unique or exclusive elements, to emphasize the potential return on investment for donors.

4. Offer Exclusivity: Include items or experiences in your auction lots that are not easily accessible elsewhere, creating a sense of exclusivity and value for donors.


Fundraising auctions should focus on impact rather than deals. Packaging individual items together to create more lucrative auction lots allows you to increase the perceived value of your offerings, tell a compelling story, and showcase the collective impact of donors' contributions. Consider curating thoughtful auction lots that resonate with your audience and emphasize the difference their support can make. With this approach, you can elevate your fundraising auctions and create meaningful experiences for your donors while supporting your cause.

The national headquarters of AmFund is located in Maitland, Florida, and is dedicated to empowering worthy nonprofits by providing much-needed unrestricted funds. Its Educational Foundation is a Federally recognized 501(c)3 and provides professional training for Development Directors, Executive Directors, Board Members, and others, leveraging over two decades of fundraising experience.

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