Cover photo for blog post
Tips & TricksApr 28, 2022

How TheShareWay Works

Your comprehensive guide to all of TheShareWay's features and tools, with video walkthroughs.

What is TheShareWay?

TheShareWay is a directory of hundreds of companies that donate food, beverages, and auction and raffle items to nonprofits and schools.


Who should use TheShareWay?

Nonprofits and schools looking for food, beverage, silent auction, goodie bag, and raffle item donations for their events. These events are typically galas, 5k/10k runs, volunteer appreciations, and any type of fundraisers.


When to start asking for donations on TheShareWay?

About 75% of the applications in our donor directory are due 1 to 2 months before the event date. We recommend starting a least one month before your event. For maximum benefit, we suggest starting three months before your event. Members who get the most donations start even earlier (6 to 12 months ahead)!


How TheShareWay Works

If you’re interested in a video walkthrough, see How TheShareWay Works Webinar. Note that we recently launched a new design. The designs in this webinar is outdated, which we'll be replacing soon.

Step 1: Create an Event

When you create an event, we surface a curated list of donors that donate in your geography, that fit the product types you’re looking for, and whose application deadlines have not past.

Creating an event also allows you to save donors (our bookmark feature) to this event, which enables you to track application statuses. We’ll get into this later.

💡 Even if your event details are not finalized, we recommend creating a placeholder event with your best estimate of the name, date, and desired donated items. This way you’ll still be able to see a list of curated donors and also receive email reminders of application deadlines. Once your event is finalized, you can edit event details in “Edit event” in the upper right corner.

Note that we recently launched a new design. The designs in this webinar is outdated, which we'll be replacing soon.




Step 2: Filter your Results

Use additional filters to refine your already curated list of donors.

  • Products: Select whether you are seeking raffle items, alcohol, beverages, meals, snacks, or desserts for your event.
  • Causes: Select the cause that most closely aligns with your organization.
  • Application method: Select the methods you would be willing to use to apply for a donation. While most companies accept online applications, some only accept applications by mail or in-person, which can be inconvenient for some of you.
  • Shipping: If you won’t be able to pick up donations, turn this on to see donors that can ship products to you.
  • 501c3 optional: Turn on this filter if you’re not a nonprofit. This will show you donors that do not require applicants to have nonprofit status.
  • Recently added: This filter will show you donors that have been added to our directory in the last two months. We add 10 donors every week.

💡 To increase the number of donors that appear in the directory, remove some filters. For example, donors that don’t have your cause tag stated as a preference may still donate to you. Many companies donate to all nonprofits and don’t have specific cause preferences.

Note that we recently launched a new design. The designs in this webinar is outdated, which we'll be replacing soon.




Step 3: Save Donors for your Event

Browse the curated list of companies and save the ones you think could be a good fit for your event.

💡 We send a weekly newsletter of companies that have approved requests in the past week. This newsletter is a great way to find donors who have higher approval rates!

Note that we recently launched a new design. The designs in this webinar is outdated, which we'll be replacing soon.




Step 4: Apply for Donations

Toggle to “Apply Mode” to view your list of saved donors. Click on the donor you want to apply to. Review the donor’s information, application details, and ShareWay members’ reviews. Fill out their application based on instructions under “How to Apply”.

💡 To access the company’s donation information and application form directly, use the links on the bottom left.

Note that we recently launched a new design. The designs in this webinar is outdated, which we'll be replacing soon.




Step 5: Track your Applications

Update Fields in Apply Mode
After submitting applications, be sure to go back to your list of saved donors in Apply mode, and update these fields:

  • Assigned to: the name of whoever is responsible for applying to this donor
  • Requested item(s): the item(s) you requested on the application form
  • Date applied: the date you submitted the application
  • Notes: any additional details you’d like to keep track of for this donor
  • Status: update the status of the donor as it moves through your pipeline. The options are Saved, Applied, Accepted, Received, Declined, and Archived. The Archived status is for donors you’re no longer interested in.
    • Remember to update the status of each donor as soon as you receive a response from the donor.

💡 Volunteers and interns are excellent for this type of work. Companies usually ask for the same set of information in their applications. Once you have the information drafted and saved in a document, volunteers and interns can copy and paste the information across multiple applications.

Note that we recently launched a new design. The designs in this webinar is outdated, which we'll be replacing soon.



Add External Donors
If you or anyone on your team submitted donation requests for companies outside of TheShareWay, you can click on “Add external company” to log that submission. That way, this donor list can be your organization’s one source of truth for all in-kind donation solicitations.

Note that we recently launched a new design. The designs in this webinar is outdated, which we'll be replacing soon.



Download Data
Click the “Download all data” button on the bottom right for a CSV export of your donors.


Step 6: Get donations!

Sit back, relax, and wait to hear back from donors.

Access 800+ donation request applications
Join TheShareWay to quickly discover companies that donate, entirely for free.
Made with ♥ in NYC & SD
© TheShareWay 2022