Improved: Online Giving Bank Verification

A couple of weeks ago, Grace’s online giving portal released an improvement to how you verify your bank account for ACH bank transfer donations.

More Than Twice the Number of Supported Banks

Previously, about 4,800 banks and credit unions across the US could be instantly verified. With this update, over 11,100 banking institutions can now be instantly verified.

If you’re unfamiliar with what Plaid’s instant verification process, it is a service the banking industry uses to enable customers to more easily but still directly and securely log in to their banks for authentication purposes in financial transactions. Here’s what it looks like on a mobile app for our online giving.

Why That’s A Big Deal

When it’s easy for you to connect their bank account, you can more easily use your bank account instead of a credit card to give. That means saving on processing fees for your church.

Currently, the cost of processing fees for credit and debit cards in the US is 2.15% + $0.30 per transaction. ACH transfers cost a flat $0.25.

For example, if you set up a monthly $500 donation, it works out like this: 

  • Credit Card: $10.75 (2.15% of $500) + $0.30 =$11.05 x 12 months = $132.60 in fees annually.
  • ACH Bank Transfer: $0.25 x `12 months = $3.00 in fees annually (0.05%)

In this example, the church saves $129.60 in processing fees. As you can see, ACH is recommended whenever possible because it is the most cost-efficient means possible for collecting donations.

Better Fallbacks

There are still some banks and credit unions that don’t support Plaid’s instant account verification system. If you search for your bank and can’t find it, you’ll still be able to verify your bank manually by entering their routing and account numbers and verifying two small deposit amounts (“micro-deposits”).

We previously used Stripe’s system for this micro-deposit verification process. Now, we’re letting Plaid handle that process because they have a few distinct advantages:

  1. Many banks that don’t support instant verification still support Plaid’s “Automatic Micro-Deposits” system. In those cases, Plaid can complete the micro-deposit verification process automatically. You don’t have to do a thing but will simply get an email after the process is complete saying, “Your bank account has been verified.”
  2. Plaid’s micro-deposit system uses same-day ACH transfers. This means less lag time between your adding your bank account and seeing those small deposits post to your account.


If you have any questions about online giving, please contact us here.