NGP VAN

RATING:

4.2

(61)

About NGP VAN

NGP VAN is a political campaign management software designed to help labor unions and democratic committees create websites to organize fundraising campaigns. The platform enables administrators to build customizable call sheets and track donor plans across various stages. Managers can set up a targeted asking price, track donor meetings and handle endorsements on a unified interface. Additionally, NGP VAN allows teams to recruit volunteers, create calling scripts, record messages and track survey progress in a centralized dashboard. NGP VAN lets businesses integrate the system with several third-party applications including Optimizely, Hustle, Revolution Messaging and ActBlue. Pricing is available on request and support is extended via phone.

NGP VAN Pricing

Pricing is based on the campaign requirements.

Starting price: 

$45.00 per month

Free trial: 

Not Available

Free version: 

Not Available

NGP VAN campaign organizing

NGP VAN Reviews

Overall Rating

4.2

Ratings Breakdown

Secondary Ratings

Ease-of-use

3.5

Customer Support

3.5

Value for money

4

Functionality

4

Most Helpful Reviews for NGP VAN

1 - 5 of 61 Reviews

Anonymous

51-200 employees

Used daily for more than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by us to submit an honest review and offered a nominal incentive as a thank you.

OVERALL RATING:

5

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

4

FUNCTIONALITY

5

Reviewed March 2024

NGP VAN- The Only Choice for Campaigns

Very positive overall, it maintains all of the lists, data, call, knock, and text data as well as valuable targeting information.

PROS

The platform is a fundamental tool to every campaign whether it be fundraising or canvassing, it is the most essential software a team can have when trying to win elections.

CONS

The interface continues to be clunky and somewhat difficult to navigate for new users. It functions first as a database as opposed to an active management tool.

Reason for choosing NGP VAN

There were no products we considered, there are not really serious competitors to the product.

Scott

Political Organization, 1 employee

Used daily for more than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by the software vendor to submit an honest review.

OVERALL RATING:

5

EASE OF USE

5

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

Reviewed August 2022

Our Path to Victory

PROS

NGP VAN’s extensive voter data collection, analysis and microtargeting capacity enables [SENSITIVE CONTENT] personally to identify supporters about 5,000 doors, and collect the votes he needs to consistently win his district 60%-40%. Absolutely essential and very highly recommended.

CONS

Data compartmentalization, although obviously necesary, can be a barrier to more effective utilization of the technology.

Reason for choosing NGP VAN

Montana Democratic Party DNC platform of choice

Ace

Political Organization, 2-10 employees

Used daily for less than 6 months

Review Source: Capterra
This review was submitted organically. No incentive was offered

OVERALL RATING:

3

EASE OF USE

2

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

3

FUNCTIONALITY

4

Reviewed February 2024

My first month with NGP VAN

The Help Desk is not helpful. As a new customer, my campaign manager and I needed a lot of reassurance and handholding, because the learning curve is steep. A natural place to start seemed to be at the Help Desk. Unfortunately, this was: (1) not live (it is via an online work order; (2) not necessarily prompt; (3) as often as not referred me and my campaign manager back to the written documentation, which too often was not helpful --and which we had typically already accessed and found it wanting. We simply stopped using the non-helpful Help Desk. My distinct impression was that my time was a lot less valuable than the Help Desk personnel time. Most of my questions could have been answered in a minute or two by an expert; instead, I was directed to online materials that took a long time to plow through, and often didn't answer the question. Now for the good news: the thrice-weekly Zoom sessions with [sensitive content hidden] have been CRITICAL to our going forward with NGP8. They know their subject matter cold, are patient and excellent communicators, and are able to provide quick, definitive solutions to problems. It gives me great comfort to know that they are there and accessible. I STRONGLY suggest that NGP clients be directed to them immediately in the onboarding process, and in fact recommend that it be a requirement that all newbies have an early-on get-to-know-you session with the Zoom team. This would short-circuit a lot of frustration and, frankly, anger with NGP. We shouldn't have had to suffer buyer's remorse and be on the verge of bailing on NGP. Fortunately, we got past that. A suggestion: Consider having a "Suggestion" box, perhaps right on the user splash page. I know there have been several times with [sensitive content hidden] that they've said, "Yes, I see what the problem is and we'll talk with our team about changing that." It would be good to know that there is an embedded process for change and improvement... ideally, with feedback so that the person who made the suggestion could be apprised of follow-up. This would yield great buy-in from clients, since they'd now be a part of the 'development team' and would see that their input is important. Moreover, there is simply no better source of improvement than feedback from end-users. NGP VAN is a great product, but is bedeviled by its rather outdated front end that is apparently layered on legacy design and nomenclature that made sense 10 or 15 years ago. It shouldn't take weeks of frustration to be at the point where you're confident that you made a good choice. And good software design shouldn't demand that a new user learn a non-intuitive front end. A suggestion: Have an alert, non-defensive site navigation team, good listeners, sit side-by-side with a few new clients and watch as they take their first baby steps with NGP8. Too often what is intuitive to engineers and experienced users is in fact counter-intuitive to new users. The integration with ActBlue is really great, and critical to the utility of NGP8.

PROS

It is comprehensive. The scope is remarkable, and I really appreciate the work that went into building it. It also appears to be pretty bomb-proof; it hasn't crashed on me yet. The best part of it has been the initial onboarding person ([sensitive content hidden]) with a special callout to [sensitive content hidden]. See my comments below about how critical they have been to successfully navigating the onboarding process.

CONS

It starts with the name. NGP vs. NGP VAN vs. NGP8...this single example pretty much sums up the nomenclature and relationship confusion. It was not at all evident the flow of information between the various entities, between VoteBuilder-MyCampaign-MiniVAN-NGP VAN...and that NGP VAN is the same as NGP8. There needs to be a wholesale review of naming conventions and definitions. (Too often the definitions don't conform to standard English or are inconsistent--e.g., "Delete" can mean 'delete from a form or from a search result,' or it can mean 'delete the record from the database.') There should never be confusion about what is going to happen when you push a "delete" button. That is just one example of dozens.

Reason for choosing NGP VAN

NGP VAN/NGP8 is within the Democratic ecosystem. It was used by several regional campaigns, albeit not by smaller campaigns like ours (for a state House district). I must say that NationBuilder impressed me a great deal, and seemed to have a much cleaner, more generally intuitive interface (although what I know of it is simply through their marketing Zoom). The input we had about NGP8, before signing up, was that it was (for larger campaigns, anyway) necessary, a "gotta have," but difficult to master. Necessary, but not beloved. It would be great to see NGP8 become easier to learn/use and more widely used. It has very little penetration, at least in my part of the country, to down-ballot races, which is a shame.

Shelley

Political Organization, 1 employee

Used daily for more than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra
This reviewer was invited by the software vendor to submit an honest review.

OVERALL RATING:

4

EASE OF USE

3

VALUE FOR MONEY

5

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

2

FUNCTIONALITY

4

Reviewed August 2022

County Party Struggles

Have been working in VAN since 2014 when I started using it as a Battleground Texas volunteer. Shifted what we learned to using VAN for the local county party. The data base was a mess! Worked diligently to improve the database, to try to get others (including other rural county parties) to use VAN, have given feedback from field use (often dismissed by the Texas Democratic Party's data team...which has had good and not-so-good people...which should be all about customer service and coaching, but mostly has tried to fit square pegs in round holes), coach other users as much as my experience allows. I continue to have issues that aren't addressed....back bulk uploads that resulted in bad data but that TDP wouldn't or couldn't back out, awareness of bad vendor phone numbers being placed ahead of good phone numbers collected directly from voters, and right now the SWITCH option has been removed so that I am unable to switch to other neighboring counties' VAN access to help their county chairs with projects (have filed two help tickets....but heard nothing...and there are no longer any phone numbers to reach any data team members with problems, everything is only through help tickets).

PROS

As voter database and tracking of contact is could shine! As a tool it is far more than any rural county party could do for themselves, so it needs to be used to its fullest (but isn't).

CONS

...but when used exclusively by volunteers, we can't get the continuity going. Without everyone using it, the input is sporadic and incomplete. There needs to be better coaching from the state party in how a rural county party can and should use VAN, with regular projects designed FOR RURAL COUNTIES (with county party input on the projects)....then deadlines and followup. Tying the why we do something to the results and analysis of what we learn each go-around (and how to track progress from election cycle to election cycle...in our RED county).

Marilynn

Political Organization, 11-50 employees

Used weekly for less than 2 years

Review Source: Capterra
This review was submitted organically. No incentive was offered

OVERALL RATING:

5

EASE OF USE

4

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

5

FUNCTIONALITY

5

Reviewed February 2024

NGP VAN is an extremely helpful tool

I've used NGP VAN for a couple of years, and we are actively using this program now prior to the March Primary Elections. Being able to identify registered Democrats, and canvass them is a modern miracle. Just this week we used NGP VAN to perform a literature distribution (lit drop) encouraging folks to vote early if they can, or vote on Election Day. We put together door hanger bags with voting dates and times, info on President Biden's accomplishments, voting locations, and a list of candidates running for State and local offices. NGP VAN offers so many resources like names and addresses, actual maps and directions to these homes. It includes video instructions for the program's use as well. We can cover large areas of our county and are prepared to ask for residents by name, which makes the first encounter go smoothly. Thank you for giving us this very valuable tool. M Davis 2nd Vice Chair & Volunteer Coordinator

PROS

I like NGP VAN's accuracy and multiple options. There are different maps to help with locating an address. The screens switch smoothly from one to another, no lag time at all, as long as you have internet connection. Even in our small, rural mountain town we have very few problems. I can't always say that about some programs.

CONS

You need some training, and actual experience, using this program, to maximize its use. NGP VAN can do so many things that it takes using it, with some instruction, to comprehend all it can do.

Vendor Response

Hi Marilynn, thank you so much for your feedback! We're thrilled to hear how NGP VAN has become an integral part of your election prep - your success is our victory dance! Training is key, and we appreciate you recognizing the power of mastering our tool. Your lit drop sounds epic, and we're proud to support your hard work in making every vote count. Cheers to making those first encounters smoother, and thank you for bringing communities together. Best of luck to you this March - you've got this!

Replied March 2024