Everyday Tasks

This chapter explains how to perform some common CiviContribute tasks.

Viewing the CiviContribute dashboard

The CiviContribute main page or dashboard summarises the contributions made, including lists of contributions received in the current month to date, year to date, and cumulatively since inception (i.e. all contribution records in your CiviCRM installation). This allows you to easily browse contributions that have been recorded automatically or added manually. The dashboard also provides buttons to manage and add contribution pages.

Different layouts are available for viewing summaries. The following screenshot shows the most recent contribution to a campaign using the Table Layout tab:



You can also view bar or pie charts to compare contribution totals across months of a given year and across years by clicking on the Chart Layout tab.


Finally, you can add any number of contribution report instances to your personal CiviCRM Dashboard. These might include a bar chart summary of year-to-date contributions by Financial Type or month, a list of the top 10 donors, etc. Refer to the Reports section for details on adding reports ("dashlets") to your personal dashboard

Adding contributions manually

When your organisation receives a contribution from a contact, you can add it to their record. This will be done automatically if the payment is made through CiviCRM (for example, a membership or event fee made with an online registration) but offline payments will need to be manually recorded to ensure that reports generated from CiviCRM are accurate.

If the donor does not already exist in the database, you need to first create a new contact record for them; see the chapter on Contacts in the Basic Concepts section of this book for information on how to do this. Once the record is created, you can then enter the contribution.

To manually enter a contribution for a contact in your database:

  1. Find the contact's record using one of the contact search tools, for example Search > Find Contacts.
  2. Select the contact's Contributions tab.
  3. Click Record Contribution (Check, Cash, EFT...). Alternatively, if you have set up a payment processor that allows credit card transactions directly on your site, you may select the Submit Credit Card Contribution option and process the payment immediately.
  4. Complete the new contribution form. The following screenshot shows the offline contribution (i.e. contributions via check, cash, EFT, etc.) form. If you selected to record a credit card contribution, the credit card form is almost identical except for the payment-related fields.Record

  5. Record the Financial Type, amount, received date (the default is the current day), receipt date (shown on the receipt generated by the system), and status (the default is Completed). Any custom fields for contributions will also appear on this form.
  6. The Soft Credit To field works with personal campaign pages (PCPs) that harness your contacts' help for campaigns. When you enter a donation manually on the contribution form for the contributor, you can assign a soft credit to the owner of the PCP. There is more information about PCPs and campaign fundraising pages in the Set-up chapter of the CiviContribute section.
  7. The Additional Details section near the bottom of the screen offers other options including adding a note about the contribution and entering the date when a thank-you letter was sent.
  8. The last two sections allow you to enter whether the contribution was in honor of someone else (Honoree Information) and whether there is a premium associated with the contribution (Premium Information).
  9. Click Save, or Save and New if you are entering further contributions.
If you find that you are entering more than a few contributions at the same time, consider using the Bulk Data Entry method described later in this chapter.

    Finding contributions

    To View the Find Contributions screen, go to Contributions > Find Contributions


    You can search based on a number of criteria, such as date range, amount, contribution status etc. Contributions must match all specified criteria in order to be returned, so the more criteria you enter, the narrower the search will be. For example, searching for the Financial Type "donation" and the date range "January 1st to May 31st" will return contributions that meet both criteria. Relative date ranges such as "Last Month" or "Last Year" are often quite useful.

    The search criteria shown above are also available from Advanced Search, which means you can get results as a list of contacts OR contributions. Advanced Search allows you to save a query as a smart group - and you can also filter your results with additional contact criteria including donor addresses and demographics ("Show me all contacts who have contributed more than $100 last year AND who live in California"). 

    The results screen from a search displays the the total amount for the results returned for that search, the number of contributions, and the average amount per contribution in addition to the subset of records resulting from the search:


    You can select an action to perform from the - actions - menu once you select all or a subset of records. The "actions" menu allows you to:

    Batch Entry of Contribution or Membership Payments

    The Batch Data Entry feature is very useful if you have a workflow where you want to enter multiple contributions or membership payments for new and existing contacts in CiviCRM at one time into a single batch and then want to verify the total amount and count of items against the payments you’ve recorded on your deposit slip(s). 

    You may also find it helpful to use the batch entry feature if you just want to enter multiple contributions and memberships into a batch, and save the batch to continue entering later.  In both cases, the batch entry feature allows you to use a batch entry grid input screen where you can use the ‘autocopy’ icons to copy values down a column as well as add new contacts on the fly to ease data entry when you have a lot of payments to record at one time.

    Here’s a simple workflow on how to use bulk data entry:

    1. Create a New Batch Data Entry Batch

    Create a new batch to hold the multiple contributions or membership payments you want to record:

    You can later edit or delete Batch information, by going back to the Bulk Data Entry screen, then clicking on Edit or Delete next the batch you want. 


    2. Enter Contribution or Membership Payments (check, cash, EFT, etc.)

    Once you enter information about the batch, you can begin entering contribution or membership payments on each line. Note that the information you see will depend on whether you created your batch with type Contribution or Membership:

    Note:  If contact information such as phone number or email address are included in the grid profile - those values will be populated for an existing contact and can be updated as needed.


    Note:  If an existing contact has membership information, those values for the displayed membership fields will be populated and can be updated as needed.

    3. Validate and Process the Batch Totals or Save the Batch

    You can enter all transactions for the batch in one session, or simply save the batch and complete the data entry at a later time.

    If you want to continue entering information into this batch at a later time, click Save & Continue Later.

    Once you are finished entering payments into a batch, click Validate & Process the Batch.  The status of the batch will be set to “Closed” and will available for searches and reporting later.


    4.  Search for contribution or membership payments in verified and processed batches

    You can search for contribution or membership payments in verified and processed batches in a several ways:

    Sending receipts and thank you letters


    Donors making contributions through an online form will automatically receive an email receipt for their payment, provided the option to send them was selected during the configuration of the contribution page. If you wish to manually send or re-send a receipt at a later date, you can do so by either editing the contribution record against a contact and ticking the option “Send Receipt?” (an email will be sent after you click “Save”), or sending one to multiple contacts through the contributions search. Simply run a search, as above, and after selecting the contacts you wish to send a receipt to, choose "Print or Email Contribution Receipts" from the actions drop-down menu. You will be given the option to print a PDF letter or send an email. Either way, the receipt date and time will change for each of the contributions accordingly.

    To find out how you can change the format of receipts, see the chapter "Contributions" > "Set-Up".


    Thank you letters 

    Later, your organisation may wish to send custom thank-you letters to a group of donors. The first step would be to search and filter your contributions until you have a target list of recipients. Go to Contributions > Find Contributions and enter your search criteria, which we recommend includes:

    In your new results list, select the contributions requiring letters, choose "Thank-you Letters for Contributions" from the actions drop-down menu and click "Go". You are now ready to customise your letter. Decide whether to use a pre-existing template, if the letters should update the receipt or thank you date against each of the selected contribution records (under "Record Update Options"), and check the page format settings. When satisfied, begin to edit the content of your letter. Remember that you can use tokens to include information relevant to each contact, ranging from first and last name to the total amount contributed (see "Tokens and mail merge" for more information). Some of the key tokens you might want to use for thank you letters are:

    Once your letter is composed, choose whether to add it as a new template (or update an existing template). Then click "Make PDF Letters".


    Download this book

    Get involved

    CiviCRM documentation is community driven. You can help improve documentation.

    Powered by Flossmanuals.