The two big names in crowdfunding are Kickstarter and Indiegogo, but it turns out that you have plenty of other options that grant you a degree of control over your campaign that the bigger names don't.
The advantages here are huge – keep all the money you raise, tweak your page to look exactly the way you want it to look, and otherwise maintain your independence in your fundraising efforts.
These are some off-the-beaten-path crowdfunding solutions we've come across.
Crowdhoster is a brand new service by crowdfunding site CrowdTilt that lets users manage their campaigns on their own using CrowdTilt's API. Collect cash via services like Stripe and Amazon Payments.
- Pros: completely free to use, keep all the money you raise
- Cons: currently invite-only
Selfstarter is the open-source crowdfunding platform that Crowdhoster is built on.
- Pros: completely customizable, doesn't require another company's API
- Cons: only supports Amazon Payments (but you can teach it to make use of other platforms), requires some coding know-how to unleash its full potential
Mimoona isn't entirely free, but we felt compelled to include it because the company offers 24/7 support via email and telephone (with internet chat on the way). If you meet your fundraising goal, it takes a small percentage.
- Pros: full integration with your own site while supporting Google Analytics and Twitter and Facebook connectivity
- Cons: not entirely free – if your campaign is successful, Mimoona takes at least 2.5%, limited options in payment
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