{blogging ideas} How to Pick a Giveaway Winner

If you have a blog and you hold giveaways, you know how frustrating it can be to pick a giveaway winner. In the past I’ve used random.org, but this meant I was counting one by one to arrive at my winner. Plus I’m so Type A that I would count three or four times to make sure I had the right winner. Once I felt comfortable that my counting skills were accurate I’d attempt to contact said winner. And either they hadn’t left an email address or any other way to contact them – resulting in the entire process starting over again – or their email {presumably} went into their spam account and, after waiting at least a week and sending several more emails, I’d be back to square one anyway.

I tried using Rafflecopter but I found that I didn’t care much for it. I was really excited when I first discovered it and immediately used it for this giveaway. But it felt clunky, readers weren’t sure how to enter (I assume) which resulted in far less entries than normal. The only benefit that I could see was how easy it was to pick a giveaway winner, and even that wasn’t enough of a positive to outweigh the negative.

So now I’m using the “Pick a Giveaway Winner” wordpress plugin and I couldn’t be happier. It does exactly what it says it will do, plus provides the winner’s contact information immediately. No more sifting through comments searching for names, counting comments again and again to make sure the right person has been chosen. It’s just a couple of choices and you’re done.

pick giveaway winner pluginI love that you can tell the plugin how many winners there are and disqualify duplicate entries if necessary. I used it to choose the winners from my Ile de France cheese basket giveaway and it turned what could have been 20 minutes or more into more like five. My kind of plugin!

Bloggers, how you choose your giveaway winners?


  1. says

    For me, I used to hold giveaways in contest form. My contests usually consisted of the best drawing or sign made. I installed HTML stars where users could vote on their favorites. It took FOREVER to implement this, and it was sometimes biased as contestants would rate their own several times. I didn't know such a great plugin existed! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Bella Addler says

    Awesome! This is so good to know! I rarely have giveaways on my blog because I never know how to choose a winner :).

  3. says

    I use random.org and agree that it’s still time consuming to use. Firstly, I allow people to enter via blog comments and twitter. One blog comment entry per person, one twitter entry per person.
    My husband has coded a tool that stores all the twitter entries (I provide a hashtag unique to each giveaway), removes duplicates or entries that don’t conform to the rules and gives me a total number of valid entries, and a digital copy of the list as well.
    But for blog comment entries, I manually need to note down which are not valid, and then count the total valid entries.
    When random.org gives me a number, it means carefully counting down through comments, again excluding the invalid ones…
    Each entry, blog or comment has a unique number, so if I have 20 valid blog entries, they are 1-20 and if I have 20 valid twitter entries, they are 21 to 40.
    I’m thinking though that, for competitions where I have multiple prizes, perhaps I can specify one prize as for blog comment entries and one for twitter entries. That would allow me to continue using my husband’s software tool for the twitter ones and this WP plug in for the blog comment ones…
    Food for thought as it’s not as straightforward as I like but am determined to be scrupulously fair, hence the time.
    I dislike rafflecopter intensely, so not going down that route.

  4. Angel says

    I am planning to hold my first giveaway and I’m glad to have come across your blog post. Too bad, I am not using WordPress. Perhaps, I can just settle for Rafflecopter, or you have anything else to recommend? :)

    Thank you very much!

  5. says

    Oh, I was so excited to see that I’m not the only one counting and recounting to verify my winner! I’m off to download this and try it on my blog! Thanks!

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