About GoFundMe

GoFundMe is a crowdfunding platform that allows users to raise money for a wide variety of personal causes, including medical bills, special events, and even for animals and pets. According to the company’s website, they’ve helped millions of people raise more than $5 billion over the past several years.

Founded in 2010 and based out of San Diego, CA, the company has been featured on CNN, Forbes, New York Times, and TIME, and held an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, based on 115 closed complaints (as of 4/10/18).

Combined with feedback from sites like BestCompany.com, it appears GoFundMe has a relatively positive online reputation, with common compliments citing ease of use, helpful support, and the platform’s ability to help people in need. What relatively few complaints there were referenced high fees and less-than-stellar customer service.

How GoFundMe Works

Similar to Kickstarter and Indiegogo, GoFundMe is an online crowdfunding destination that helps you raise money for something in which you strongly believe.

In fact, when compared to their competition, GoFundMe allows you to raise money for almost anything you want—including school tuition, medical bills, business ideas, travel expenses, even for animals and pets—as long as it’s not illegal and doesn’t contain inappropriate content.

The company states that getting your personal crowdfunding campaign underway takes less than a minute, and there are no required deadlines or time limits. Depending on the type of campaign you choose, you can even keep all of your donations, even if you don’t reach your ultimate goal.

From start to finish, the GoFundMe process entails four primary steps:

  • Create your GoFundMe site.
  • Share your site with friends and family, invite contacts, and post to social media sites to garner traffic.
  • Collect online donations.
  • Track results.

GoFundMe Pricing & Support

GoFundMe recently removed their five percent fee for all US, UK, and Canadian personal campaigns, although this fee still exists for certified charity campaigns.

Keep in mind that according to their Pricing and Fees page, though, even free personal campaigns will still be charged a 2.9 percent payment processing fee, along with a $0.30 fee that is assessed per donation.

As perhaps an overly simplistic example, if your campaign raised $1,000 among 20 contributions, you’d pay $29 in processing fees, and another $6 in donation fees, allowing you to keep a total of $965. Remember that this figure will vary depending on the total number of donations and their size.

The GoFundMe Guarantee “ensures that donations are protected if campaign funds are not delivered to the intended beneficiary or donors are misled by a campaign organizer or beneficiary.” If not, they could reimburse donors up to $1,000, each.

In addition, refund requests are honored if the campaign’s funds are available (i.e., the user hasn’t withdrawn them). If they have been withdrawn, a company representative advised they’re still often honored, “but [the] process is longer and requires us working with the user who withdrew” them.

When you’re ready to withdraw your money, simply provide your bank account information, and your money will be deposited within 2-5 business days. Alternately, GoFundMe can send U.S. users a paper check, though this will typically take 7-10 business days.

If necessary, you can reach customer service by filling out a contact form on their website, to which the company promises to deliver "24/7 rapid response" (in most cases, within 15-30 minutes).

Pros:

  • Has helped individuals raise more than $5 billion in funding.
  • Completely free to start and run a campaign.
  • Campaign topics are completely open, as long as they’re not promoting anything illegal, or contain inappropriate content.
  • You get to keep your donations, even if you don’t reach your monetary goal. Also, withdraw funds from your campaign whenever you wish.
  • Customer support appears to be very active.
  • Mostly positive online customer feedback.

Cons:

  • Technically free for personal campaigns in the US, UK, and Canada, although a payment processing fee applies, along with an additional $0.30 fee for each donation made.

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635 Consumer Reviews for GoFundMe

Average Consumer Rating: 4.2
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 473 4 star: 44 3 star: 4 2 star: 17 1 star:  97
Bottom Line: 81% would recommend it to a friend
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  • Editor’s Note: It is our understanding that this company has been asking its customers to leave feedback on HighYa. We assure you that each of these reviews has still been subjected to the same verification & vetting process that all submitted reviews go through. Learn More Here
  • Customer service stars

    • Queens, NY,
    • Jul 23, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I turned to GoFundMe in a rather panicked state and was able to navigate the site and set up a donor page with ease. But when the parameters of my campaign changed and I needed assistance to make adjustments, the Customer Happiness Team showed up and did a fantastic job helping me get it all sorted - and they did it with kindness and compassion as they were fully aware of why I created a campaign in the first place. This is always the kind of customer service that one would hope to get - and the GoFundMe team delivers.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • In GoFundMe I trust

    • Santa Cruz, CA,
    • Jul 22, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I have an opportunity to help teacher volunteers in the Houston area who are working with undocumented and unaccompanied children and youth. Living and working part-time as a teacher trainer in California, my volunteer service would end up costing me more than I can afford at this time. I started my GoFundMe campaign to support Partnership for the Advancement and Immersion of Refugees, Vista Volunteers, and (recently added to my list of volunteer agencies) the St. Jerome program with Catholic Charities.

    Though my campaign has stalled, GoFundMe's Customer Happiness team has given me an extra boost through several promotion resources, one of which was hard to find but easy to use and apply.

    I'm new to fundraising. As a long-time teacher and teacher trainer, money has always been scarce, but my vocation has done well by teachers, schools, and principals.

    I recommend GoFundMe to others who need help to serve and educate those who need it most.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Great service

    • Los Angeles, CA,
    • Jul 22, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Excellent customer service. I had set up my campaign incorrectly the first time, and they were able to refund my donors right away and help me set up the correct page. Thanks for all your quick help!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Great customer service

    • Bay Shore, NY,
    • Jul 22, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I had some trouble setting up my withdrawals and in a few days it'd be shut down if I didn't do so, then when I contacted the GoFundMe team they quickly replied and I got the answer I needed to properly set up my withdrawals. They even gave me information on the withdrawal system, that helped out a lot.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Great customer service experience!

    • Skaneateles, NY,
    • Jul 22, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I had a wonderful customer service experience when I made a donation and wanted to remain anonymous. There was no selection for my name to be anonymous but rather just the personal note, so I contacted the customer service department and within minutes they made it anonymous and since have sent me a couple of follow up emails to ask if everything I needed was handled and then another to see if I was happy with my experience. I am truly grateful when a company really wants their customers to be happy, and I can see that GoFundMe is one of those companies.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Excellent service

    • Wisconsin,
    • Jul 22, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I have found GoFundMe to be a wonderful experience for raising funds. It's so easy and within three days we had reached 1/3 of our goal and it was because of the way GoFundMe gets your information out to the world. I didn't have to do much of anything except to have a great cause. GoFundMe was able to link their page to the petition site that we already had going, and within days we had reached our goal of $5,000. I set it up so that the funds went directly into my account and now have been redirected towards our goal of saving a horse from abuse. I also had a question that I couldn't find an answer to and GoFundMe replied within 24 hours with great service. Thank you GoFundMe!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 1 out 1 people found this review helpful

    Great customer service

    • New York,
    • Jul 21, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I accidentally had an issue with funds going to the wrong place. The issue was resolved instantly by GoFundMe, excellent service. No problem donating a small fee for the quality service...

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • GoFundMe and brain surgery

    • Richardson, TX,
    • Jul 21, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    A day or so after I went through ten hours of brain surgery, I tried to start a GoFundMe account. I couldn’t figure it out due to not being able to see and not thinking well. These people have the patience of Job. They answered over and over what I was supposed to do. Sometimes they just took over and made things happen! As soon as they heard about my situation, they were on it.

    I didn’t reach my goal, but I did raise about $8,000! That has helped me pay nearly all my medical bills. I’m very grateful to the people of this organization for everything. When it was time to stop, they helped me understand how to do that, too. It was a good experience under very trying circumstances. They even sent me an email wishing me well!

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Very helpful for first-time fund-seekers

    • Long Beach, CA,
    • Jul 21, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I'm creating a GoFundMe account to raise the remaining money our alum chapter needs to endow a scholarship. But I needed help finishing the set-up, and Melissa responded promptly to my email request. And she has answered several more questions and offered to connect directly with the scholarship director at our school, the University of Hawaii at Manoa.

    Melissa has made us feel comfortable and confident that we are establishing our campaign correctly.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Wonderful experience!

    • Minneapolis, MN,
    • Jul 21, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    GoFundMe has been incredibly user-friendly as I set up our fundraising site. The customer support staff call themselves "Customer Happiness," which puts a smile on my face every time I see that. They have been personable, quick to respond to my queries, and have offered to help with our campaign going forward. I couldn't ask for more. My only suggestion is to have more space/characters for naming the campaign. I would absolutely recommend GoFundMe for anyone considering a fundraising campaign.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • Genuinely helpful

    • Brighton, United Kingdom,
    • Jul 21, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I have recently run a fundraising campaign for a much-loved member of our community who lost her life to cancer. As I was running it, a friendly member of the team called to say how we could reach more people and increase the funds, they were willing to think about it, and I got some useful advice.

    After our friend passed away, I needed some help settling the campaign, making sure it stopped popping up all over Facebook but not closing it down as then the family would not be able to withdraw funds. I asked for help and the next day got a prompt reply from Niall, who had thoughtfully and sensitively written saying he had done this for me and giving me full instructions for how to do it in the future.

    Thank you GoFundMe, much appreciated.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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