What is CiviCRM?

CiviCRM is an open-source Constituent Relationship Management system (or framework) ultilized by thousands of non-profits, non-governmental and advocacy organizations and is supported by thousands of people around the world. CiviCRM allows organizations to:

  1. Centralize constituent communications
  2. Build and manage your donor base & membership
  3. Integrate with Wordpress, Drupal, Joomla & Backdrop

Contact Management


CiviCRM allows organizations to automatically store all data for each contact in one place, creating a unified, holistic record for each constituent.

  • A practically unlimited number of custom fields allows users to track whatever data they need to identify and report on
  • Detailed communication preferences lets you interact with your constituents in the way they are most comfortable with
  • Custom activity types let you specify interactions that are unique to your organization or group
  • Importing and exporting contact information is easy and flexible
  • Multiple address, email, and phone number fields let you reach your people wherever they are

Top Features

One Record

No longer will you have to refer to multiple systems to get a complete view of your constituents’ level of engagement with your organization.

Record Interactions Automatically

Because CiviCRM is integrated with bulk email, online contributions, event registrations, membership management, and more, transactions are automatically recorded on each contact record and are available for reporting and action.

Track & Nurture Relationships

Linking contacts through relationships, groups, and tags, you can identify, track, and act on the web of connections between your constituents and your organization.

Configurable & Customizable


Many organizations will find they don't need a programmer to configure their CiviCRM system to meet their needs. It's amazing how much can be done using only the standard user interface to set their options, adjust their dropdown fields, and turn features on and off. If you do need custom programming, CiviCRM's open source license will allow you the freedom to find the right programmer to tailor your installation specifically to your needs.

  • Enable core components like CiviMail, CiviEvent & CiviCampaign
  • Configure any option list (location types, activity types, event types, etc.)
  • Create your own forms via drag-n-drop
  • Add custom fields to nearly anything

Top Features


Enable components, modify option lists, and rearrange menus to suit the exact needs of your organization


With open source software, there's no restrictions on what additional features or integrations you can develop in-house or with a partner


Hundreds of free add-ons to choose from in the CiviCRM Extensions Directory let you add new features to your CRM with the click of a button



CiviCRM lets you manage your Membership program and integrate it with other features. Individuals can sign up and pay for their membership online, receive automatic membership renewal reminders, and receive member-only emails.

  • Configure membership levels
  • Create online sign up forms
  • Enable online payment
  • Set up scheduled renewal reminders
  • Import and export membership information
  • Create online membership directory accessible to members
  • Communicate with members
  • Create member-only email lists
  • Send out member-only emails
  • Search for specific member types and create dynamic smart groups and email lists
  • Create a monthly new member and renewing member report
  • Create a report to see member participation in member-only events

Top Features

Create Membership Program

Configure membership levels, automatic status rules (including grace periods) & online sign up and payment forms

Communicate with Members

Email specific member lists and send automated renewal reminders

Run Membership Reports

Create new and renewing member reports, and view how members are interacting with your organization

Accounting Integration


By linking financial types (income categories) with their corresponding income, asset, and expense accounts in your chart of accounts during your system configuration, CiviCRM handles the accounting connection for all contributions on the back end while letting your development director deal primarly with who gave the gift, and how and why they gave it.

Don't want to use the accounting integration? No problem. All the normal CiviCRM funtions will work just fine, and the accounting integration will sit unused in the background.

Top Features

Reduced Data Entry

Enter your gifts into CiviCRM, export them, and import them into your accounting system

Accounting Control

A robust control system in the export process allows you to choose which transactions you want to export in each batch, and ensures that each transaction is only exported once


From configuration to data entry to export, you can organize, enter, and search your contribution data in the ways that make the most sense for your organization

Case Management


CiviCRM allows organizations to create, manage, and track simple or sophisticated case management workflows.

  • Easily manage single interactions, such as recording the results of a phone conversation with a constituent.
  • Track a complex sequence of interactions or communications. For example, your organization may have a specific workflow and timeline for assisting constituents in enrolling in a program. This workflow might operate along a specific timeline and be disseminated among your entire staff. CiviCRM allows you to define the steps in that process - an intake form, a phone call, a face-to-face meeting - and assign those tasks to the appropriate staff. The resulting case is then automatically recorded in the constituent’s profile for future reference.

Top Features

Activity Management

See everything that’s occurred regarding a specific case and what’s scheduled to occur

Flexible and Configurable

Whether your workflow is simple or complex, with ad-hoc activities or a very defined timeline, it can be tracked in CiviCRM


Print reports across cases or for a single case, redacting sensitive data where necessary

Event Management


CiviEvent provides a full set of tools for running events and recording a constituent's attendance in their activity record.

CiviCRM allows you to easily create registration pages for free and paid events. An intuitive interface allows you to establish your event's date, time, registration period, capacity and fees as well as confirmation and reception messages.

  • Search for participants by event, event type, participant role, etc.
  • Easily import and export participant data to/from other systems
  • Set up recurring events and activities
  • Allow users to export events as iCal files and configure online calendar applications to "subscribe" to iCal feeds of your public events

Top Features

Ease of Use

Create event registration forms, register participants online or off-line, sign up volunteers, and automatically generate registration confirmations and receipts

Event Templates

Common events and event types can be used to create templates that speed up creation of future events


Automatically send pre-event reminders or post-event wrap-ups to attendees, donors, sponsors, and more

Email Marketing


CiviCRM makes it easy to create and manage bulk email lists. You can also segment your lists, do A/B testing, and monitor statistics.

  • Create html and text versions
  • Personalize emails
  • Import & export email lists
  • Use email templates
  • A/B testing
  • Schedule mailings
  • Segment your list
  • Email statistics
  • Check open rates, and click-through rates
  • Monitor bounce rates and unsubscribes

Top Features

Target Your Emails

Send email newsletters & segmented emails based on donor status, membership status, open rates of previous emails, and more

Design Effective Emails

Create and use templates, & personalize emails by merging with contact-specific data

Measure Statistics

Monitor open rates, click-through rates, bounces, unsubscribes & more

Contribution Management


Process and track contributions, send gift acknowledgements, and report on your data in an elegant and intuitive workflow process.

CiviCRM’s integrated nature makes creating and tracking fundraising appeals straightforward and powerful. This might include a general appeal, a newsletter appeal, a year-end appeal or a special Mother's Day campaign. Non-technical administrators can easily create contribution pages and track their results. With CiviCRM you can collect and record contributions to your organization made via check, phone and public web forms and tie them directly to constituents contact records. These contributions might include:

  • One-time donations
  • Recurring donations
  • Memorial donations
  • In-Kind donations
  • Pledge payments
  • Membership payments
  • Matching gifts

Top Features

One System

Record checks, process credit card transactions made over the phone, and integrate directly with online donation pages, all in CiviCRM

Easy Gift Acknowledgement

An integrated gift acknowledgement and recording process lets you quickly and easily thank your donors and record that activity

Comprehensive Reporting

Create any number of donor reports, including those that show you who your most loyal supporters are, who has lapsed, and who has recently upped their contribution level

Feb 14, 2019 By Chris