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Fortunly's Guide

Best Crowdfunding Sites in 2021

By
G. Dautovic

September 16,2021


There’s no better place to find investors for your upcoming project than the internet. There are thousands of people out there who would be willing to participate in your campaign and get some exclusive (or symbolic) rewards in return.

All you need to do is make the first move and set it all up. To help you break the ice, we’ve come up with a list of the best crowdfunding sites on the market. These platforms are easy to use, offer plenty of features, and won’t drill a massive hole in your pocket. Here are our top picks for you.

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6 Best Crowdfunding Sites

Kickstarter Logo
Kickstarter
Our Rating
  • Excellent marketing potential
  • Suitable for creative projects
  • All-or-nothing goals
Indiegogo Logo
Indiegogo
Our Rating
  • Support for more than 200 countries and territories
  • Fixed and flexible goals
  • Post-goal donations
Krowdster Logo
Krowdster
Our Rating
  • Database of proven backers
  • Detailed analytics
  • Pre-launch setup
GoGetFunding Logo
GoGetFunding
Our Rating
  • Ongoing or deadline-based campaign
  • Fixed or flexible goals
  • Personal and business ventures
Kickbooster Logo
Kickbooster
Our Rating
  • Pre-launch landing page creation
  • Referral marketing program
  • Pledge manager
CrowdFunding Exposure Logo
CrowdFunding Exposure
Our Rating
  • Good Facebook and Twitter reach
  • Guaranteed Google placement
  • Press release services
Evaluation Criteria

Our Methodology for Evaluating Crowdfunding Sites

To help you find the right website to raise money for projects we’ve created a set of criteria that would filter out all the bad and mediocre crowdfunding platforms. That way you get only the best platforms that are worth your time, money, and effort. Here are some of the most important factors we took into consideration.

Ease of Use

People in search of the best crowdfunding platform aren’t usually high-profile marketing experts or miraculous copywriters with exceptional attention-grabbing skills. These are just normal people who want to present their projects in the best light possible.

That’s why it’s important for the website to acknowledge this and offer a simple, user-friendly experience. We assess how quick and easy it’ll be for you to create your campaign and start earning some money.

Features

At this point we get into the specifics. What kind of goals does the platform offer? How does the rewards system work? Does the platform specialize in certain areas or is it open to different projects?

Is there fraud protection of some sort? We dive in deep and compare crowdfunding sites to make sure you get the best deal for your money. 

Promotion

Now that you’ve set everything up, added videos and rewards, and described your project, it’s time to turn your attention to the marketing side of things. How easy is it to promote your work?

Is the platform inherently a fertile land for organic marketing? Some companies use their reputation to ensure increased visibility, while others rely on tools. We sum it all up and turn the results into numbers for the final score.

Support

One thing that almost all of the best fundraising sites have in common is outstanding customer support. That’s why this is also one of the most important elements in our crowdfunding reviews.

You’ll want a good, knowledgeable team by your side to help out with the details and any problems that might come to the surface. There’s nothing worse than a company that will leave you hanging at the first sign of trouble.

Fees

The final element on our list is often the first item that many users consider - the fees. How much you will pay for the crowdfunding services depends on the type of website you’re using. The industry standard for the best crowdfunding websites is around 5% from the gathered amount along with payment processing.

Of course, marketing-based sites will cost a bit more but offer you an array of options to ensure you get noticed. We’ll tell you all you need to know about the prices so you’ll know what to expect right away.

 

Quick Breakdown

The 6 Best Crowdfunding Sites in 2021:

Crowdfunding Websites - Detailed Reviews

Kickstarter Review

Quick Facts
5 stars Our Rating
Types of funding:
fixed
Platform fee:
3-5% for total amount, $0.05-0.20 per pledge
Marketing tools:
organic, platform-promoted

In the world of online crowdfunding, Kickstarter is definitely the biggest star. The company, founded in 2009, has already helped users raise more than $5 billion dollars for their creative projects and it shows no signs of slowing down. If you’re considering this platform for your next funding campaign, here are some of the details you should know.

First of all, while people from all over the world can back the projects and send their financial support, not everyone can start them. Before devoting yourself to the campaign, check out the list of supported countries to make sure you’re eligible for it. If your location is not on the list, you might have to switch to one of the other best crowdsourcing sites.

One of the main reasons why users opt for Kickstarter in the first place is the marketing potential. Seeing how the platform is basically a synonym for crowdfunding, it organically attracts a lot of attention from the media and potential investors. If you have an interesting, eye-catching, creative project, there’s a good chance it will be naturally picked up by a news agency or magazine. You just need to ensure it’s presented in the best way possible.

Kickstarter is a rewards-based all-or-nothing system, which means you’ll only get the funds if you reach a pre-defined goal. There is no option for Kickstarter equity crowdfunding or charity campaigns. It is among the best crowdfunding sites for artists, musicians, game developers, and creative projects in general.

We could say that the Kickstarter fee falls below the industry’s standard, but this company basically created the standard. The platform gets 5% from the total amount you’ve successfully funded, plus 3% and $0.20 per pledge. There is a different fee for what the site calls micropledges (donations under $10) - 5% plus $0.05 per pledge.

It’s important to mention that you only get charged if you reach your goal. You won’t get into any debt if you don’t.

Pros:

  • Excellent marketing potential
  • Suitable for creative projects
  • Fees charged only for successful campaigns
  • Easy-to-use interface
  • Live campaign statistics

Cons:

  • Not everyone can start a project on this platform
+ Show more

Indiegogo Review

Quick Facts
5 stars Our Rating
Types of funding:
fixed, flexible, post-goal
Platform fee:
5% for total amount, 3% + $0.30 per pledge
Marketing tools:
organic, platform-promoted

With 15 million site visits every month, it’s clear why Indiegogo is among the best crowdfunding sites for individuals in need of financial support. Although it was founded a year earlier, Indiegogo is still considered a great alternative to Kickstarter, especially in the countries that aren’t allowed to use the latter. So, what are the benefits and limitations of Indiegogo?

First off, the platform allows backers from 235 countries and territories across the globe. If you’ve had trouble funding projects elsewhere, Indiegogo might be your ticket to success. The company supports creative projects as well as technological innovations and educational campaigns.

The only limitation is with personal cause projects. While Indiegogo doesn’t support them, the platform will gladly point you in the direction of its partner company, GoFundMe crowdfunding.

One of the biggest differences you’d notice if you made an Indiegogo vs Kickstarter comparison would be the crowdsourcing websites’ goals. While Kickstarter only supports fixed, all-or-nothing targets, the Indiegogo app gives you a flexible, keep-all-funds option as well. Both of these choices have their pros and cons, so it’s up to the user to figure out what works best. 

You can reward your backers by adding perks for each level and setting the featured one. The platform also pioneered the “secret perk” option, which lets you reward users who visit your page through a unique link you provide. This unlocks plenty of interesting opportunities and may draw in new investors.

Interestingly, this platform is often mentioned as one of the best Patreon alternatives, because of its extended funding service. Namely, Indiegogo InDemand allows you to keep receiving donations on a regular basis even after you’ve successfully completed your goal.

Even the best crowdfunding sites for investors don’t offer this option, which makes Indiegogo a special hybrid with a lot of flexibility and long-term potential.

When it comes to fees, Indiegogo stays within the industry standard at 5% for the total amount and 2.9% + $0.30 per donation. Note that, depending on the currency and location, you might be charged additional transaction or transfer fees.

Pros:

  • Support for more than 200 countries and regions
  • Fixed and flexible goals
  • Post-goal donations
  • Technological and educational campaigns
  • Secret perks

Cons:

  • Smaller user base compared to Kickstarter
+ Show more

Krowdster Review

Quick Facts
5 stars Our Rating
Types of funding:
monthly
Platform fee:
$49+ /month
Marketing tools:
backer database, social media, newsletters

Krowdster is what might be called a third-party crowdfunding tool. It helps you set up, organize, and keep track of your campaign with all the details you need to make it a success. You can connect it to the best crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter or Indiegogo and use their extensive backer lists. Here are some of the specifics.

Despite the fact that it offers dozens of intricate features, Krowdster has a simple, user-friendly interface. You’ll have no problem finding your way around it or exploring its options. The company’s main selling point is its database with thousands of backers and super backers. With it you can target proven investors.

The database includes Krowdster’s own list as well as Indiegogo, Kickstarter, and other relevant sources. If you want, you can pay only for access to the database or bundle it up with other features.

While the best crowdfunding sites for personal causes or creative projects will give you the means to start your campaign, they will rarely help out with the execution. This is what makes Krowdster an invaluable tool for promotions.

You can get targeted Twitter and Facebook marketing, a custom list of media according to your niche, or high-quality press releases. You set up a couple of different pages pre-launch and switch them around based on the results you get from the analytics.

As we’ve already mentioned, there are different parts of the service, and you can pretty much bundle them however you want. Opting for unlimited access to the backer databases from the best crowdfunding sites for startups will cost you $99 a month. If you add Twitter marketing to the bundle, you’ll get a discounted option of $129 a month.

Another interesting one-time bundle gives you a combination of a press release and a list of media relevant to your project for a price of $216. It may seem like a lot, but this professional service might just be worth it.

Pros:

  • Database of proven backers
  • Detailed analytics
  • Pre-launch setup
  • Facebook and Twitter marketing
  • Professional press releases

Cons:

  • Expensive for small-scale projects
+ Show more

GoGetFunding Review

Quick Facts
4.5 stars Our Rating
Types of funding:
fixed, flexible, monthly
Platform fee:
4% for total amount, 2.9% per pledge
Marketing tools:
organic

If you’re looking for the best crowdfunding sites for medical bills, personal goals, special events, startups, or some other creative projects, GoGetFunding can deal with all of your needs. There are practically no limitations, which is why it’s among the most popular platforms on the market. Combine that with a below industry-standard fee and you’ve got an amazing offer. Here’s what you can expect.

While most other funding websites tend to specialize in specific types of campaigns, GoGetFunding gives you a wide variety of choices. To get started, you need to fill out a form and pick the right category. The platform is among the best crowdfunding sites for nonprofits and startups alike, but GoGetFunding also allows you to connect to its volunteering partners like PlanMyGapYear and The Mighty Roar.

GoGetFunding.com lets you choose whether you want a campaign with a specific timeframe or a no-deadline ongoing fundraiser. In that same manner, you can opt for a fixed all-or-nothing goal, or choose a more flexible option where you keep all the money you raise regardless of the outcome. The platform also offers support in multiple languages to make sure you maximize your reach.

Overall, what sets GGF apart as one of the best crowdfunding sites for business or personal goals is the team’s dedication to your success. With every campaign, you get a personal online fundraising coach who guides you through the process.

You don’t need to wait while GoGetFunding reviews your application - as soon as you set up the campaign, it’s immediately live. You even get a modest page customization option for those final touches.

The biggest crowd-pleaser, though, is the GoGetFunding fee, which dips well below the industry standard at 4% of the total amount. This, along with a 2.9% card processing fee and $0.25 (if you’re using PayPal or $0.30 if you’re using Stripe) is immediately taken from every donation on the website as it arrives, so you don’t have to worry about it.

By choosing GGF instead of the other best funding sites on the market, you save up 1%, which can make quite a difference.

Pros:

  • Ongoing or deadline-based campaign
  • Fixed or flexible goals
  • Personal and business ventures
  • Partner companies for volunteering
  • No manual reviewing

Cons:

  • Products get low visibility
+ Show more

Kickbooster Review

Quick Facts
4 stars Our Rating
Types of funding:
fixed
Platform fee:
$29/month
Marketing tools:
pre-launch campaign, referrals, pledge manager

Kickbooster is an interesting choice because it gives you a far more involved approach to crowdfunding. Instead of just creating a page and letting it go live, you can invest in the pre-launch setup, manage a referral program, and give your backers awards. Whether that justifies the slightly higher fees is for you to decide.

Before you compare it to other top crowdsourcing sites, here are some of the most important details to be aware of.

With Kickbooster.me, you get the whole package that starts off with pre-launch landing page building. For $29 a month, you’ll be able to customize your landing page, collect emails from your visitors, and essentially create hype for your project before it even starts. Keep a close eye on the number of visitors through the platform's analytics and add a real-time counter to pump up the expectations.

The second part of the service pushes it to the next level with the referral marketing at another $29 per month plus commissions. This can put your backers to work and incentivize them to effectively spread the word about your project and bring on new visitors.

You can integrate Kickbooster with the best crowdfunding sites like Indiegogo and Kickstarter to track your progress through the dashboard. The referral program is quite flexible. This is one of the best fundraising sites that don’t charge you additional commissions if you don’t reach your fixed goal.

The third part of Kickbooster’s offer is the so-called Pledge Manager. For the price of 10% of the total amount raised and $1 per backer, you get the ultimate managing tool for keeping track of your backers. You can offer them customized surveys, give refunds, upsell them, or manage their shipping addresses.

It’s an expensive but powerful tool that can save you a lot of time and make sure your investors don’t go empty-handed. Even if you’re using the best crowdfunding sites for small business ventures, you need to keep your customers happy.

Pros:

  • Pre-launch landing page creation
  • Referral marketing program
  • Live launch counter
  • Indiegogo and Kickstarter integration
  • Customized backer surveys

Cons:

  • Expensive for larger projects
+ Show more

CrowdFunding Exposure Review

Quick Facts
3 stars Our Rating
Types of funding:
one-time
Platform fee:
$20+
Marketing tools:
social media, newsletters, Google placement, backer database

The success of any crowdfunding campaign often lies in its promotion. You can have the best page in the world, but if you don't know where or how to promote it, you might just be wasting your time. This is the whole philosophy behind CrowdFunding Exposure Inc. and its online offer.

Reach out to millions of potential investors with your campaigns on the best fundraising sites and watch the donations come rolling in. So, what products does CrowdFunding Exposure offer?

The company offers a set of different packages starting with the simplest promotion and the potential reach of nearly 400,000 Facebook and almost 1.7 million Twitter followers. It is a one-time payment that gives you 15 days of advertising as a featured page. It’s not exceptional, but considering the price it’s not bad. The price goes up as you choose higher-tier packages, as does the potential reach and the number of features.

A popular package that might be worth your time and money will cost you $99 as a one-time payment for 60 days of advertising. It doesn’t matter whether your campaign is on the best real estate crowdfunding sites or charity platforms, the company can handle it all.

Besides the increased follower reach, the package gives you a guaranteed Google placement and features your project on more than 50 news sites. The company does the professional press release for you, which is well worth the money.

If you don’t consider the price to be a major obstacle, CrowdFunding Exposure will offer you plenty of other features and services. These include a complete campaign rewrite, advice from social media experts and news managers, as well as huge backer databases from the best crowdfunding sites for musicians or whatever your specific niche is.

The site also offers custom quotes for high-profile clients, but beware of upselling.

Pros:

  • Guaranteed Google placement
  • Press release services
  • Extensive database of backers
  • Partnership with hundreds of news sites
  • Various price bundles

Cons:

  • Lots of upsells
+ Show more

Fortunly’s Guide to Different Types of Crowdfunding

What is crowdfunding? In the online context, it’s a method of raising funds for your project with the help of other people on the internet. Sounds simple enough, right? Well, it’s actually a bit more complicated than that. There are several types of crowdsourcing that vary according to the nature of the project, the reward system, and the goals. Let’s shed some light on the issue.

There are dozens of different crowdfunding websites out there. Some of them specialize in certain projects, so you can narrow down your search. For example you can look for the best crowdfunding sites for charity, platforms that are most suitable for business startups, or those that are perfect for creative work. 

If you’re thinking of launching your own campaign, take a few minutes to see if you can find the crowfdunding platforms that are more suitable for your type of project. For example, MightyCause is an exceptional platform focused on charity, while iFundWomen aims to help out female-led startups.

Depending on what kind of project you’re setting up, you can offer various incentives to your supporters. If you need help settling a debt, you can organize it to work essentially like a credit union, receiving repayable loans from the community or friends and family. The best equity crowdfunding sites, for instance, will offer backers a share in the company or a slice of the profits in exchange for their investment.

The most common practice for creative campaigns, though, is the reward system, where supporters get special prizes and exclusive content as a thank you.

Another thing to keep in mind is the crowdfunding goal. Various websites might offer you different options, but it usually comes down to two choices - fixed or flexible goals. With fixed goals, you set a funding goal and you only get the funds if you reach it. This “all or nothing” concept can be stressful but is more appropriate for projects that need specific amounts. 

However, the top crowdfunding sites will often brag about their flexible goals, allowing you to collect as much as you’ve earned without limitations. Of course, the problem here is that you might not be able to deliver on all your promises with a smaller budget. In any case, it’s something that you should consider from the very start.

FAQ
Which is the best crowdfunding site? +

While the answer might depend on the type of project you’re working on, you can’t go wrong with popular platforms like Kickstarter and Indiegogo. Kickstarter is often dubbed the best crowdfunding site because it can provide you with a lot of exposure completely free. Investors, reporters, and curious individuals regularly search the platform for fun, new, exciting projects. On the other hand, Indiegogo lets you choose between fixed and flexible funding options, both of which have their unique benefits.

Which crowdfunding site has the lowest fees? +

Despite the fact that the platform still charges for payment processing, GoFundMe fees for the actual service are 0% in most countries. Kickstarter and Indiegogo both take 5% of the total amount plus processing fees, while GoGetFunding offers a slightly better deal at 4%. Snowball can also be found on the list of crowdfunding sites with no setup fees, but you only get a single donation with very limited features.

What percentage do crowdfunding sites take? +

The answer depends mainly on the business plan of the company. Most reputable fundraising websites offer a fixed amount of about 5% along with payment processing fees at another 3% per donation. Some of the best crowdfunding platforms won’t charge you the fixed part, or may offer special deals for microdonations (payments that are below a specific threshold). Before you decide whether the best crowdfunding sites are worth your time and money, make sure you understand exactly what you’re getting. Paying a bit more to get extra exposure on a high-profile website might be a solid investment.

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