Raffle Success – 4 Mistakes to Avoid

Our Top 4 Mistakes to Avoid for Raffle Success

An online raffle, in particular, is a cost effective and profitable fundraising tool for not for profits but you do need to be organised and have a plan.

To reach your full sales potential here are our top 4 mistakes to avoid for raffle success.

Don’t Set and Forget

Firstly don’t assume that because your raffle is online, that it will be found.  Your raffle success depends on regular promotion.

Often raffle coordinators are slow to get their promotions off the ground which can lead to a delay in initial sales.  Have your promotional strategy and material ready to go when your raffle launches.

Raffles do have a lifespan and it is realistic to expect an inverted bell curve of ticket sales. Typically sales are strongest at the launch and towards the end of the raffle with a lull in the middle. Of course this is entirely dependent on what promotions you are running and any events that you might be piggy backing during the life of the raffle.

After the first burst of ticket sales, don’t assume that you have reached out to everyone and there are no more sales to be had. Continue to engage with as many people as possible through different marketing avenues.

Prizes – Undervaluing/Overvaluing/Over Investment

Too often fundraisers undervalue their prize pool with a $2 ticket.  A $2 will not generate sufficient revenue to make conducting a raffle worthwhile, whether by paper or online unless your prizes are 100% donated.

As a general rule we suggest that your single ticket price should be 0.1% (point 1 percent) of your prize pool value.  Ie a prize pool of $5000 would commence with a $5 ticket.  We recommend that most raffles begin with at least $5 single ticket.  Offer discounted bulk ticket packages to bring the price down for buyers whilst ultimately securing a larger sale.

To a lesser extent, we occasionally see unrealistically high ticket prices that don’t match the prize that is on offer.  Consider the demographic of your ticket buying audience.

Lastly, if you don’t have the good fortune to receive donated prizes then, only outlay the amount for prizes that you can afford to lose. This is especially true if your organisation has never conducted a raffle before and you have no statistics to make educated decisions about your raffle format. Crunch the numbers and discover how many sales are required just the cover the cost of our prize. It is a mistake to think that the larger the prize pool the more sales you will receive. Easy funds can be raised from a small prize pool without the risk of a large financial outlay.  Knox Grammar is testimony to this.  Read about their success.

After having conducted one raffle you will be able to utilise your sales report to gauge the sweet spot of average ticket sales and use this information to design your next raffle.

Raffle Success Image Collage
Images Sell

Ensure that you have high resolution, good quality images to engage potential ticket buyers when they reach your raffle page.

Ask your prize sponsors to supply a high quality prize image and/or logo and failing that just search Google for the best version of their logo.

Use emotive, bright imagery to entice buyers and if you don’t readily have access to these, go to free image stock sites like Unsplash and Pexels. As with these sites the images you use should be under a Creative Commons license which means you can use them for free for any personal and commercial purpose. Attributing ownership is not required.

Timing is Everything

There are many things that will effect your raffle success and timing is a big factor to consider.

When choosing the best time to conduct your raffle, consider public holidays, school holidays, local events which you can piggyback or which might cause competition for sales, Christmas credit card debt, financial hardship due to recent events eg. factory closure.

Poor timing can mean your target audience is distracted and unreceptive to your raffle promotion. Traditionally school raffles will go quiet during the school holidays. Similarly a sports club raffle should not be conducted in the off season.  For charities, conducting a raffle too close to Christmas can be detrimental.  Take a look at our Best Times of Year for Fundraising.


So now you know what to look out for when planning your next raffle.

Want more fundraising tips? Read more about other online fundraising success stories or just cut to the chase and get in touch.