On this blog we like to identify gifts where a percentage is donated to a great cause. But wouldn’t it be great if ANY gift you bought could go towards a great cause? There are a few sites out there like this, and the newest one is Buy4.com.
Buy4 works on an affiliate model, meaning that when you “click” through to a participating merchant’s Web site from Buy4.com and purchase an item, the merchant will pay a percentage of that transaction to them, and they in turn will donate that money to a charity which you designate.
It doesn’t cost you any extra money–the price you pay when you check out of the merchant’s account is exactly the same whether you clicked through from Buy4.com or not.
Buy4.com has done a few things that I haven’t seen other similar sites do. First, they have connected to a database that lists over 1.5 million registered 501(c)(3) charities, so you can choose literally any charity you like. I was able to pull up the little church I used to attend back in New Jersey.
Second, they have over 1,700 online retailers you can click through to, big names like 1-800-Flowers, Target, Amazon.com, and Macy’s. In other words, places you’ll be shopping anyway. In many cases, click through to these companies not only allow you to donate a portion of proceeds, they’ll also get you some good deals along the way, like free shipping or a dollar or percentage savings.
Third, they keep great track of how much you’ve earned for your charity through their online dashboard.
Fourth, they have a partnership page which any charity can use for free to encourage fundraising simply by encouraging members or fans to shop through.
As I said, ideas like this have been done already, but this is probably one of the more clean and professional executions of it. I wish them the best of luck as they launch.