Reviews (1-3 of 3)
January 17, 2020
Score 5 out of 10
Luminate CRM and Analytics is being used to manage our donor database functions and donor tracking functions. It allows for simplified gift processing and receipting, campaign tracking as well as our donor pipeline. In addition to that, it houses individual donor information, everything from phone number to address to date of birth.
It does great with donor cultivation processes and the workflow feature is top-notch for automating processes. Where it does a less than stellar job is getting it to work more specifically for your organization. Often times building that kind of special feature costs a significant time and money investment and it is something that is hard to transfer when it's time to move to a new database.
Read Dustin Alexander's full review
Support for the product is horrible; often support will have you bouncing between Blackbaud support and Salesforce support and it's very rare either are able to find simple solutions. Most of the time the solutions almost always cost money and hiring consultants which, for a smaller organization, means not being able to achieve proper solutions.
September 13, 2017
Score 6 out of 10
We use it in a number of ways - Luminate clients usually rely on its tools for advocacy and fundraising at a grassroots level whereas we use it for event management, ecommerce, donation management, email campaigns, and contact management. It's not the best tool for any of these areas but it does allow us to do a lot of things under one platform. The only thing our company uses that is disconnected is a separate CMS but we've made the two fairly compatible. In the last few years the front facing side of Luminate Online has become more mobile friendly and we can market to constituents more thoroughly.
- Multiple tools on one platform. It saves time and lowers chances of error since we don't have to switch between a lot of platforms. Many less tech savy admins appreciate one login for everything.
- We use our events calendar for many things, and the tools are fairly specialized for a more modern and easy to browse web calendar (having mobile optimized wrappers make all the difference).
- Email campaigns can be segmented and more carefully targeted, both through ab testing and their reports.
- Email campaigns - as much as we like and use them, Luminate Online's admin experience is not as new and sleek as other email marketing software. Unlike MailChimp and Emma, you have to do everything in a wysiwyg template, which relies heavily on the tech experience of the admin user. In a nonprofit setting such users are harder to come by.
- Usability for admins. Many of our admins complain about the clunkiness of the program compared to other systems they use. So while they prefer having all tools "under one umbrella" they'd prefer for these tools to be more optimized in a modern workplace.
- Any additional services get very expensive. We've been with LO for awhile so overtime have gotten more customized parts of it that make our digital marketing more relevant (such as mobile friendly templates). But these did not come cheap and all additional services not contracted are often expensive. At times we've been hit with huge fees without any warning from our customer success reps.
Read Rose Grant's full review
If you want a "one size fits all" aka one platform to do most things, especially if your company is advocacy or grassroots donation based, then this is a better product for you. Our business is neither but we've managed to customize it over time to fit our donor needs with the various Luminate Online tools.
Luminate CRM is used by both our fund development department and our programs department to log contacts, track donation and registration income, measure reach of programming, and store contact information.
- Luminate takes some of the legwork out of setting up NSPS for nonprofit use of salesforce.
- In my experience, the Blackbaud team is a nightmare to work with, and customization of Luminate CRM (or basic updates) will cost an arm and a leg.
- Luminate imperfectly lays over the Salesforce platform, so if you use certain Salesforce functions you can really compromise the integrity of your data.
- The layout and user experience is pretty subpar. The reporting feature is also not as robust as other databases.
Read this authenticated review
It works okay if you have a large budget and don't have the technical experience on your staff to set up NSPS appropriately. It probably also works better as a purely development-driven database; trying to track multiple departments with very different goals in the same database is challenging.