The practice of funding a project or venture by raising small amounts of money from a large number of people, typically via the internet.

Crowdfunding is an innovative way of fundraising that has become increasingly popular in recent years. It allows startups, entrepreneurs, non-profits and individuals to collect donations or investments from a large pool of people - often referred to as the ‘crowd’ - in exchange for rewards or equity. This form of capital raising utilizes online platforms such as Kickstarter or Indiegogo which provide a platform for individuals to solicit funds from backers all over the world. In some cases, these platforms can even offer tax incentives or other benefits to encourage donors to contribute.

The amount collected through crowdfunding varies depending on the project and its goal. It can range anywhere from several hundred dollars up to millions of dollars in some cases. Crowdfunding campaigns typically involve setting a monetary goal that must be reached within a certain timeframe in order for the campaign to be successful; if this goal isn’t met, then any money raised will not be collected by the initiator of the campaign. Additionally, rewards are usually offered in exchange for contributions - ranging from simple “thank you” messages up to unique experiences or products related to the project being funded.

There are various types of crowdfunding available depending on what kind of funding you are looking for: donation-based crowdfunding where donors give money with no expectation of repayment; debt-based crowdfunding where lenders loan money expecting repayment; equity-based crowdfunding where investors purchase shares in companies they believe have potential; reward-based crowdfunding where contributors receive tangible items such as t-shirts or products related to the project they are backing; royalty-based crowdfunding where funders receive recurring payments based on sales generated by their investment; peer-to-peer lending which involves lending directly from one person/business entity without involving any third parties; or hybrid models that combine elements from multiple categories mentioned above.

Each type has its own set of advantages and drawbacks – so it’s important for those considering using this method of fundraising understand what best suits their needs before embarking on a campaign. For example: A social enterprise might use donation based crowdfunding because they need funds quickly but don’t want any expectations associated with taking on debt or giving away ownership rights/equity stakes while tech startups might benefit more from venture capitalists investing via equity based funding since they could potentially gain access to more resources down the line if their product succeeds commercially.