What is PURL and how to use PURL to create campaigns

by LA - Customer Success Manager 30 Nov 1999

A PURL is a personalised URL (Unique Resource Locator), and by personalised we mean a landing page that is personalised with details such as the First Name, Last Name, Donation Amount or other specific content within the page or form to personalise it further for the supporter.

Key terms:

Funraisin hasha unique reference stored against the form submission (donation form or registration form)

PURL - Personalised unique resources locater 

Why would you use a PURL?

PURLs are used to make a landing page more relevant to the person viewing the page and assisting in speeding the conversion process as parts of the donation or registration are pre-populated with the person's details.

Most Common uses of PURLs in Fundraising & Events

 Appeal Pages - less friction in the donation flow with optimised conversions and results

  • Pre-populate a donation form with personal details and suggested donation amount
  • Show specific content within content blocks on the page that matches a supporter's previous area of interest - such as 'building fund', 'education', or 'medical equipment wishlist' etc
  • Personalise the content within the copy of the page to make it more relevant to the supporter

Registration Forms - incomplete registrations converted to fundraisers

Pre-populate registration forms with the personal details of previous participants from your database, or use data captured during registration where the participant does not complete the entire registration flow. Using incomplete registrations in this way can really help boost your participant numbers - and fundraising.

How Does a PURL Work?

We'll keep this as non-techie as possible as it's not all that complicated once you understand the basics.

  • Data is stored within fields in a database - Ok, maybe too basic laughing
  • Those fields can have data uploaded to them manually via an import spreadsheet or they can collect data through forms such as a donation or a registration
  • Once the record for a donation or an event registration is created we store a unique reference against the form submission that's called the Funraisin Hash eg: a580fe022c9388a8c966f162eed31e65
  • You can use that Funraisin Hash the opposite way too - to tell a form or a content block to go and get data from that record in the database - then show the data stored in that field in the form or landing page using personalisation tags such as {d_fname} for donor first name etc

How to use PURLs in your EDM to supporters

  • You can then send the PURL to your supporter by adding the Funraisin Hash to the end of the landing page URL and then including it at the end of the page URL eg: ?incid=a580fe022c9388a8c966f162eed31e65

  • The ? in the URL is what informs the browser that what's coming next is a query from the database

  • incid in Funraisin means to look for an incomplete record in the database

  • Finally the a580fe022c9388a8c966f162eed31e65 is the record the database is going to query (ie: grab data from)

In this case, the URL you share with the supporter through an EDM to take them directly to the page you've personalised for them would be: 

https://domain.com.au/pagename?incid=a580fe022c9388a8c966f162eed31e65

PURL Use Case 1: Personalised Appeal Pages

Using PURLs for appeals is the most common application. Being able to personalise a page for a specific donor, using their name within the content, and pre-filling the donation form with their personal details, relevant dollar handles and a suggested donation amount can really help optimise conversions.

Usually, the data will be pulled from previous appeals and campaigns within Funraisin, your CRM, and historical data from other fundraising platforms you've used to run appeals. This allows you to see if there are patterns in a supporter's gifts and show them the most appropriate set of dollar handles and preselect an amount that suits their giving pattern.

Analysis of the types of appeals your supporter usually gives to can also help to inform the choice of content that is shown on the landing page too. This is a bit more of an advanced move that we'll cover in future support articles. laughing


 How to upload data for donation page PURLs

In the Funrasing admin:

  1. Open the Donations module
  2. Choose Advanced Options
  3. Choose Manage PURLS
  4. Choose the tab named Import List
  5. Download the CSV template
  6. Add your data: minimum details are First Name, Last Name and Email
  7. Save data to be uploaded as a CSV file (NB: the structure of the CSV cannot be edited - no columns can be added or removed or moved before uploading back in to Funraisin)

    Please Note: Your Uploaded CSV will need a campaign name which is the top field before saving the upload.

  8. Within the Import Donations tab use the file uploader to import the data - selecting in the dropdown to Import the data into Incompletes
  9. Return to the browse screen for Donations
  10. Choose option Incomplete Imported Donations from the the green donations dropdown to the top right of the browse screen
  11. Use the green Download Imported button to access the data you've uploaded - this file will now contain a Funraisin Hash for each supporter for you to use in your EDM

 Supporter experience of arriving on their own personal appeal page

Based on the data uploaded


 $200 Dollar handle automatically selected

 $200 populated into the donation amount field

 First name, last name and email address added to the donation form

PURL Use Case 2: Incomplete Registration Reminder

In this example, Sam has started to register in a peer to peer event and has only completed his personal details and you'd like to remind him to complete his registration.

Click on the link below to see a live example

Please don't edit or submit this record once you're on the page laughing

https://support.funraisin.co/register/online-event-1/?incid=5c0065c34e724030d01220cac6fe9beb

 What Sam sees when he clicks on the link containing his Funraisin Hash

 What you see in the Funraisin admin

If you’d like further help please pop in a support ticket from your admin and our team will assist you.