Shopify defines fundraising as raising financial contributions for a charity, cause, or other enterprise. Fundraising may also be generated by selling products accompanied by statements that a portion of proceeds will be directed to a particular charitable organization or cause.
If you want to raise funds for a charity, nonprofit organization, or cause through your online store, then you must comply with Shopify’s Acceptable Use Policy as well as provide current and accurate information about how you plan to use the funds raised.
Guidelines for fundraising for a registered charity or nonprofit organization
If you’re a registered charity or representative of a charity or nonprofit organization, and you want to use your Shopify store to raise funds, then you need to provide current and accurate information on your online store. The information needs to be public-facing and easy to access, and must include the following details:
- Name, phone number, and address of your organization.
- Identification number of your organization.
- Declaration on the tax-exempt status of your organization under applicable law. For example, the Internal Revenue Code in the United States, or the Income Tax Act in Canada.
- Proof that your organization is listed with relevant authorities in your jurisdiction, such as GuideStar or the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) tax-exempt organization database in the United States, the Canada Revenue Agency’s (CRA) database of registered charities in Canada, the database of Charity Commission of England and Wales in the United Kingdom, the ACNC Charity Register in Australia, or the Charities Register in New Zealand.
You should also consider including a link to the registered charity or nonprofit organization's website on your online store.
You can find specific information online about fundraising guidelines for registered charities or nonprofit organizations.
- Fundraising in Canada.
- Fundraising in the United States.
- Fundraising in the United Kingdom.
- Fundraising in Australia.
- Fundraising in New Zealand.
Guidelines for affiliating with or donating to a registered charity or nonprofit organization
If you’re affiliated with one or more registered charities or nonprofit organizations, or if you claim that you donate a portion of your proceeds to one or more registered charities or nonprofit organizations, then you need to provide current and accurate information on your online store. The information needs to be public-facing and easy to access, and must include the following details:
- Name, phone number, and address of the registered charity or nonprofit organization.
- Identification number of the registered charity or nonprofit organization.
- Proof of affiliation or proof of donations to the named charity.
Guidelines for personal fundraisers
If you want to use your online store for a personal fundraiser, then make sure that your fundraiser acts in accordance with the following guidelines:
- Your fundraiser isn't linked to any of the prohibited activities under Shopify’s Acceptable Use Policy.
- You provide current and accurate information about how you intend to use the funds publicly on your online store.
- You include relevant disclaimers and express statements that your business isn't a tax-exempt organization.
- You include information about contributions made to your fundraiser that aren't deductible for federal income tax purposes as charitable contributions.
Certain activities aren't allowed on Shopify because they are considered malicious and deceptive practices which are prohibited by the Shopify Acceptable Use Policy, including but not limited to the following prohibited activities:
- Falsely claiming to be affiliated with a legitimate charity to solicit donations.
- Fraudulently raising funds for a non-existent charity.
- Pretending to be a charity. For example, misrepresenting your business’s charitable status to solicit donations.
- Using a name, logo, or images similar to those of a legitimate charity that you're not affiliated with.
- Soliciting funds with vague and sentimental claims but not providing specific information about how the donations will be used.
Shopify reserves the right to request additional information or documentation to verify your claims of donation or affiliation with a charity, nonprofit organization, or cause. Failure to provide the requested information or documentation may result in suspension or closure of your Shopify account.