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Will Facebook's New 'Donate Now' Buttons Be a Boon for Nonprofits?

And drive donations to charity?

Facebook is about to get a whole lot more useful for nonprofits.

Today, the social giant launched a "Donate Now" button organizations can plug directly into their Pages and ads to aid fundraising efforts.

The American Cancer Society is already using the button, which sits right next to the "Like" button on its page, prompting users to make a donation directly through Facebook by typing in their credit card information. The ALS Association—the organization behind the viral Ice Bucket Challenge—is also using the button to drive traffic to its website.

Facebook donations have proved successful for causes like earthquake recovery in Nepal in April, during which $10 million was raised in three days. But, people are still wary about storing their credit card information with Facebook, and it's not clear how much money the buttons will actually make for nonprofits.

"Every day, people use Facebook to raise awareness and support for causes they care about and to motivate others to do the same," Facebook said in a statement. "We're inspired by how much good comes from these connections, so we've added 'Donate Now' calls-to-action on Pages and link ads to make those connections easier than ever."

The Donate Now button is Facebook's latest step toward convincing marketers that its Pages drive conversions. Earlier this year, the Menlo Park, Calif.-based company opened up buy buttons that let retailers link their posts to sales.

And in June, Facebook-owned Instagram opened the spigot on its own ad business, including adding Buy Now buttons.

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