Comparison

What makes Open Collective different?

  • Full transparency of both where money comes from and where it goes.

  • Completely open source.

  • Designed for ongoing collaborative communities, not individual creators or one-off campaigns.

  • Offers Fiscal Hosting as a service, so projects don't need to legally incorporate or figure out taxes.

Our product overlaps in some ways with crowdfunding sites, fiscal sponsorship service providers, and accounting software. But we're the only platform that combines all three.

While crowdfunding is based on time limited campaigns, Open Collective is designed for longer term support of ongoing projects and initiatives. Instead of throwing your money in a black box and hoping for the best, Open Collective has full transparency, so everyone can see where the money comes from and where it goes.

Fiscal sponsorship has been a pretty niche service limited mainly to the charity sector, where existing nonprofits will hold grants for unincorporated projects. Open Collective brings this concept to every other sector, and supercharges it with a tech platform that radically lowers overhead for fiscal sponsors (no more messy spreadsheets!), so they can support more projects, and empowers sponsees to see and manage their money directly, alongside features for fiscal management best practice.

Open Collective is not a fully featured accounting platform, but it offers key features for budget tracking and expense management and payment. One feature we offer that most accounting software doesn't is integrated payments for expenses, via Paypal or bank transfer. It means projects don't have to step into the complexity of a full fledged accounting tool in order to do basic budget tracking and good money management.

name

one time donations

recurring donations

fees

transparency (incoming funds)

transparency (spending funds)

Open Source

Designed for...

Offers fiscal hosting

OpenCollective

yes

yes

5% + credit card fees (+ host fees if any*)

yes

yes

yes

Communities

yes

Patreon

no

yes

5% + credit card fees

yes

no

no

Individual creators

no

KickStarter

yes

no

5% + credit card fees

yes

no

no

One-off campaigns

no

GoFundMe

yes

no

5% + credit card fees

yes

no

no

One-off campaigns

no