how does gleam pick winners

Rafflecopter vs Gleam vs RafflePress: Which Is the Best Giveaway Tool?

Are you looking for quick ways to run WordPress giveaways and are unsure of which giveaway tool to use? Don’t worry! In this article, we’ll compare Rafflecopter vs Gleam vs RafflePress, the most popular giveaway tools, so you know the strengths of each option and can enjoy running viral giveaways.

What is a Giveaway Tool?

A giveaway tool is a web application or plugin that allows you to create and run contests and giveaways on your website.

Often the tool comes in the form of a giveaway widget, landing page, or an embed code that you can easily add to your site. The most popular giveaway tools let you add multiple entry options so that visitors can enter the giveaway.

These entry options usually involve the following actions:

  • Following you on social media.
  • Joining your email list.
  • Visiting a URL.
  • Leaving a comment.
  • Sharing a post, and more.

And the benefits of using a tool for giveaways is that it helps you keep track of who’s entering, while allowing you to grow your email list, social followers, and raise awareness about your business.

Rafflecopter vs Gleam vs RafflePress

We’ve identified 3 of the most popular giveaway tools, Rafflecopter, Gleam, and RafflePress. But which one is the best? Let’s dig deeper and find out.

If you’re in a hurry, here’s a quick summary of our findings.

Giveaway Tool Rating WordPress Plugin Price
RafflePress Best Giveaway Tool for WordPress Yes $49 / year
Rafflecopter Basic Tool for Giveaways No $156 / year
Gleam Giveaway Campaign Platform No $120 / year

Features: Rafflecopter Vs Gleam Vs RafflePress

Let’s look a little closer at the features of each giveaway tool so you can compare them with each other and choose the right one for your needs.

Rafflecopter Features

Rafflecopter is a popular free web-based giveaway tool, which means you can create a giveaway right there on the website. The Rafflecopter giveaway app claims it is easy to use and allows small businesses to set tasks for people to enter the giveaway.


  • Standard entry form design
  • Add a prize image gallery to your widget (paid version)
  • Include surveys and polls in your contest (paid version)
  • Social media entry options (Facebook and Twitter only on the free version)
  • Integrate your Rafflecopter giveaway with email marketing services (paid version)

Something worth noting, however, is there isn’t a Rafflecopter WordPress plugin. Rafflecopter is a web-based giveaway app so there isn’t an easy way to integrate Rafflecopter into WordPress with a plugin.

Gleam Features

In comparison to Rafflecopter, Gleam is a marketing platform comprised of 4 different apps that helps promote your business and engage with your audience. So you get a lot of extra features you may not even need to run your giveaway.


  • 4 individual apps for getting more email subscribers, run Gleam competitions, build social media galleries, and coupons.
  • Run a gleam giveaway with unlimited entries.
  • Access giveaway winner data (limited to 10 winners on the free version).
  • Randomly draw winners from all entries.
  • Multiple entry options including social media, file uploads, and more, although this depends on which plan you choose.
  • Integrate with popular email marketing software (paid plans only).

Now that we’ve looked at Rafflecopter vs Gleam, it’s time to add RafflePress into the mix.

RafflePress Features

RafflePress is the only giveaway tool on this list that’s designed to run contests and giveaways on WordPress.

Billed as the best WordPress giveaway plugin it aims to help you grow your email list, website traffic, and social media followers with viral giveaways and contests.

As a viable Rafflecopter alternative it is super user-friendly and comes with pre-built templates to help you get set up quickly.


  • The drag and drop giveaway builder is super-easy to use for beginners.
  • 1-click entry and fraud protection makes it easier for people to enter and reduces spam entries.
  • Viral giveaway templates help you get more subscribers, boost site traffic, and grow your social media followers.
  • Easily run Twitter giveaways with the ready-made Twitter template.
  • Dedicated Instagram giveaway template helps you collect user-generated-content quickly.
  • Viral refer-a-friend actions help you spread the word through word-of-mouth referrals.
  • Giveaway landing pages create a distraction-free environment for contest entrants to take action.
  • Social media integrations help you grow your following on Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and more.
  • Powerful retargeting features let you maximize your conversion goals.

Ease of Use

Now you know what each contest tool includes, let’s take a look at how easy they are to use in the real world.

Rafflecopter: Ease of Use

Running a giveaway with Rafflecopter involves setting up your contest on their website. It’s straightforward to get started and the contest widget lets you add more than 1 prize if you like.

The entry options included are limited with the base version of Rafflecopter and include the following choices:

  • Follow on Twitter
  • Visit a Facebook page
  • Leave a blog post comment for running blog giveaways
  • Invent your own action

To unlock more actions, along with the ability to add a prize image, you’ll need to upgrade to the paid plan.

Adding your contest to WordPress requires copying and pasting an embed code which can be scary for complete beginners. And unfortunately, it doesn’t include a plugin to make the process easier.

You can, however, link to your giveaway using the URL provided.

Gleam: Ease of Use

To start running Gleam giveaways you can sign up for a free account. Then you can visit the Gleam dashboard to start creating your contest.

The admin area is pretty cluttered, which can make finding the settings you need tricky. And with so many different features displayed it’s confusing if you’re new to using the app.

Many of the options displayed in the Gleam giveaway dashboard can only be accessed by upgrading to one of their paid plans. So filtering what you can and can’t use is a challenge.

There are 4 ways to publish your Gleam giveaway online. This includes the following options:

  1. Embed in a blog post or page
  2. A landing page hosted on Gleam
  3. Add a tab to your Facebook page
  4. Add a tab to your website (paid plan only)

And again, there isn’t a WordPress plugin to make connecting to your site easier.

RafflePress: Ease of Use

Running a giveaway with RafflePress is really easy. Simply get your copy of RafflePress and add the plugin to WordPress. For help with installing WordPress plugins, follow these instructions.

How to Run a RafflePress Giveaway

Setting up your RafflePress giveaway is as simple as choosing a giveaway template, entering your prize information, adding entry actions, and hitting publish.

But to make things easier for you you can follow this easy step-by-step guide on how to run an online giveaway with RafflePress.

A few important things to take note of with RafflePress is that with the free plan, RafflePress Lite, you can add the following entry actions without having to pay a penny:

  • Visit a Facebook page
  • Follow on Twitter
  • Tweet a message
  • Follow on Pinterest
  • Visit on Instagram
  • Visit a page

The majority of RafflePress entry actions, also allow users to enter your contest daily to secure multiple entries.

The free version also includes a giveaway rules section with a rules generator template and a GDPR consent option. You can also include your Google Analytics tracking code to track the contest traffic of people virally sharing your giveaway.

Adding a RafflePress Giveaway to WordPress

RafflePress has 3 ways to publish WordPress giveaways which include the following methods:

  1. A built-in RafflePress content block
  2. Publishing with a WordPress shortcode
  3. Creating a giveaway landing page (pro version only)

The easiest option is to use the RafflePress WordPress block.

To add your RafflePress giveaway to WordPress create a new post or page and give it a name. Then click the plus icon to bring up the content block finder in your WordPress editor.

Type RafflePress into the search box to bring up the content block. Then click it to add it into your post.

From the dropdown menu in the block, scroll down until you find your giveaway. Once you click it, the RafflePress giveaway widget will appear in your post with a live preview.

Click publish when you’re ready. Then when you navigate to the live post, it will look similar to the example below:

If you’d prefer to create a standalone, distraction-free landing page for your giveaway, it’s as simple as choosing the Giveaway Landing Page option and entering a unique permalink for your page.

Then you can laser-focus your traffic to a single page to help you increase your contest entries.

Support for Rafflecopter, Gleam, and RafflePress

Being able to access first-class support when hosting a contest is crucial to your overall success. With the right support, you can make sure you’re using your giveaway tool in the best way to maximize your results.

Let’s see how each option looks in terms of the support on offer.

Support: Rafflecopter

The support for Rafflecopter consists of a resource center with helpful guides, videos, and rules for running contests on certain social media platforms.

They also have a knowledgebase with a collection of frequently asked questions, and answers users can search through for solutions.

And if you’re still stuck, you can submit a request ticket using the form provided on their website.

Support: Gleam

Gleam, on the other hand, offers email support to all customers on any plan and users of their paid versions can also use chat support.

There’s also a slack group for anyone on their pro plan or higher. Priority support is reserved for Business and Premium plan users.

To go with their direct support, Gleam has a range of resources for users to learn in their own time.

Support: RafflePress

When using RafflePress you can contact the support team via their online contact form where you get to speak to a human being. They aim to get back to you within 24 hours and they’re always happy to help no matter how simple your question is.

RafflePress also has detailed documentation for all available features. And to go with it, their blog is dedicated to providing the most up-to-date information about running contests. Plus there’s a ton of tutorials for growing your business on WordPress too.

Even better, RafflePress offers users a 100% money-back guarantee so you can use the plugin with zero risk to yourself.

Pricing for Rafflecopter vs Gleam vs RafflePress

When it comes to learning how much each giveaway tool costs, it’s pretty simple, as we detail below.

Rafflecopter Pricing

Rafflecopter’s free plan is limited to basic actions, while the paid versions unlock more features such as:

  • Custom entry form design
  • Prize image gallery
  • Pinterest entries
  • Polls & surveys
  • Email integration
  • Viral refer a friend option
  • Branding removal
  • Form Themes
  • Real-time analytics

Rafflecopter’s paid version costs $156 per year and scales up.

Gleam Pricing

As we mentioned earlier Gleam has a free plan that limits the level of customization and actions you can include in your giveaway. This means that if you want to benefit from the more advanced functions, you’ll have to start paying for it.

There are a number of pricing plans with Gleam. For the Competitions app on its own, pricing starts at $120 per year which includes a range of social media actions.

You can, however, buy all 4 of Gleams apps in a bundle at $97 a month which translates to $1,164 per year.

RafflePress Pricing

Compared to Rafflecopter and Gleam, RafflePress lets you run a pretty detailed giveaway using the free version.

But upgrading to the paid version unlocks more powerful features which include:

  • Multiple sites – Add RafflePress to more than one of your WordPress websites.
  • Time controls – Set the start and end time for your giveaways.
  • Multiple prizes – Offer more than 1 prize on the giveaway widget.
  • Email verification – Verify entries by asking participants to enter their email address.
  • Prize image gallery – Display stunning prize images.
  • Design options – Customize the design of your giveaway widget and landing page.
  • Polls & surveys action – Run a poll or survey as a way to enter. (You can learn how to get more survey responses here.)
  • YouTube actions – Ask entrants to visit your YouTube Channel or watch a video.
  • File upload actions – Allow participants to upload a file to enter the contest.
  • Image upload actions – Run a photo contest with image uploads.
  • Email integrations – Grow your email list by integrating with your email marketing software and asking people to subscribe.
  • Zapier integration – Connect to thousands of other apps and services.
  • Mandatory actions – Make specific entry actions required to enter.
  • Winner Announcement – Display the giveaway winner on your contest widget.

Upgrading to the paid version of RafflePress starts at $49 per year, which is around $4 per month, the most inexpensive option on this list by far!

However, if you start out using RafflePress Lite, you’ll get a discount automatically applied at the checkout when you upgrade.

Which is the Best Giveaway Tool: Rafflecopter vs Gleam vs RafflePress

Now that we’ve compared Rafflecopter, Gleam, and RafflePress, which is the best?

Our pick for best Giveaway Tool and WordPress contest plugin is RafflePress. It’s easy to use, incredibly beginner-friendly and is dedicated solely to running giveaways.

There are no unnecessary features bundled in to confuse you, making it an excellent alternative and because it comes as a WordPress plugin, everything is handled right on your website. From picking winners to getting more email subscribers, it’s all done on-site.

The free version of RafflePress has everything you need to run a successful giveaway, but because the paid version is so inexpensive, it costs very little to extend the functionality.

And once you’ve set up your first giveaway, check out these super-effective contest promotion ideas. Or you can see our comparisons of RafflePress vs KingSumo.

If you found this article helpful, be sure to join us on YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook for more giveaway guides and tutorials.

In this article, we’ll compare Rafflecopter vs Gleam vs RafflePress, the most popular giveaway tools. So you know the strengths of each option.

Choosing Competition Winners

Gleam gives you full flexibility on how you choose winners for your competition. We base our winners around the number of prizes that you have allocated, so if you want to draw 10 winners please ensure you have 10 prizes against the competition you are drawing.

Winners are also assigned to a specific action that they have completed, you will see this when you announce winners in the widget.

Please note Gleam does not automatically contact the winners of your competitions.

Random Winners

When your competition finishes you will get a notification from Gleam asking you to choose your winners.

You can find ended competitions in the Finished tab of your site:

  • Red shows Competitions that have not had winners drawn yet
  • Blue shows Competitions that have had winners drawn but not announced publicly
  • Green shows Competitions that have had winners drawn and announced publicly on the widget

If you go to your competition then the Winners tab you will have the option to start drawing winners.

You must ensure that you are drawing Winners for your campaigns in accordance with our Terms of Service, failure to do so can result in an account review or suspension.

Drawing Winners

When you select Draw Winners you simply have to decide the number of winners you want to draw (this cannot exceed the number of winners set for your campaign), specify if you want to restrict entries by date, and select Draw.

You will then be presented with the winning entry or entries, ready for you to announce and contact.

Drawing Multiple Winners for Multiple Prizes

If your Competition contains multiple prizes, you have the option to draw winners for ‘All Prizes’, or draw winners based on a specific prize.

If you choose to draw winners for ‘All Prizes’, the 1st winner drawn will be allocated the 1st prize in your list, the 2nd drawn will be allocated to the 2nd prize in your list, etc.

If you want to draw winners for a specific prize only, you need to select the prize from the dropdown list and choose how many winners you want to draw for that prize. This number cannot exceed the remaining number of winners for your selected prize.

Once you have drawn your winners you will be presented with the winning entries, ready for you to announce and contact.

If you would like to change the prize allocated to any winner for any valid reason you can do so from each winner’s Prize status:

How Does The Random Draw Work

Gleam automatically uses to draw winners, they offer true randomness:

RANDOM.ORG offers true random numbers to anyone on the Internet. The randomness comes from atmospheric noise, which for many purposes is better than the pseudo-random number algorithms typically used in computer programs.

We currently draw winners based on actions, not unique entrants. This means that there is the potential for the same person to win more than once. If this happens you can invalidate the entry & repick that winner again. has a number of certifications from different countries which you can view or request here.

Drawing Multiple Winners

To draw multiple winners, all you need to do is specify the number of winners you want to pick under Winners to Draw.

You will then be presented with the winning entries.

When you draw multiple winners, each winning entry will be numbered from 1 to the total number of winners that have been picked.

For example, if you draw 4 winners, the winning entries will be numbered from 1-4.

This makes it easy to handle major and minor prizes or rank winning entries from 1st to nth place.

Allow Repeat Winners

When drawing winners you can choose to Allow Repeat Winners.

Selecting this option will allow multiple entries from a single contestant to win prizes.

Daily / Weekly Winners

You don’t have to wait until the competition is over to draw winners. In fact you can draw them at any time during the competition. This means if you have a competition that has 5 daily winners you can just visit the Winners tab to draw each day.

When you click Draw you can simply choose how many winners you want us to draw for you.

Business plans and above have a more granular control over winners by being able to choose a specific time or date range.

Manual Winners

You can also draw manual winners if your competition doesn’t involve any element of randomness. This is perfect for game of skill competitions that we see regularly in Australia.

Gleam audits manual winner draws to ensure that this feature is being used appropiately and not to manipulate results.

Admin / Test Entries

If you are logged in as an admin we will automatically invalidate your own entries before a competition starts, this gives you time to test your entry methods without actually entering the competition.

One thing to note is that if you are testing an email provider integration you will need to make your own entries valid manually to test it.

Archiving Entries

There may be times when you need to run ongoing competitions that end at regular intervals, for example if you run a weekly competition.

Archive entries allows you to simply pick your winners each week, then archive all the entries for that content. Which means you essentially start fresh again (whilst still keeping the old data in the actions tab).

Example 52 Week Competition

Lets say you had a competition running for an entire year with weekly winners then 10 grand prizes at the end.

  • Prizes: You would need to add 61 total prizes, weekly for 51 weeks then 10 prizes on the final draw.
  • Date Range: Set the end date for the competition to the final draw date.

Each week you can then choose your winner & archive the existing entries. Essentially starting the contest again.

This functionality means that you wouldn’t have to keep recreating the contest every week.

How Do I Deal With People Cheating?

Gleam has a number of ways to protect you from users cheating in your competitions. We have worked hard to ensure that this process should involve as little manual intervention as possible, however it depends on how thorough you want to be in checking entries.

Free Users

Once you pick a winner you’ll be able to see all of the information and details about that user and their entries. This will allow you to do a final validation of their entries before awarding the win or deciding to repick.

On Pro and above you can access all entry data and validate or investigate entries prior to drawing winners.

Automatic Action Validation

Gleam integrates with a lot of different API’s, we use these API’s to validate that entrants have in fact completed what you have asked.

For example, a user can’t complete a Tweet on Twitter without Twitter letting us know via the API it’s successfully been done. Where possible, we also try to provide you URL’s and links to the completed action in your Actions list (in-case you need to verify).

Manual Validation

There’s cases where this isn’t always possible too, for example with the Twitter Web Intent box – it can tell us that an entrant Tweeted, but for security reasons won’t give us the URL of the Tweet. So we know it has been done, just not exactly what the exact Tweet is.

What About Users Deleting Their Posts?

Quite often users may delete one of their entries after completion. Unfortunately this isn’t something we track, however it’s an easy thing to manage.

You only really need to check valid entries when you are picking a Winner. Simply click the User icon next to the Globe icon and you can review all other entries from that winner (to ensure they’ve completed everything you asked).

If anything seems out of order you can revoke the win, invalidate the entries then repick another Winner.

Winner Invalidation

If you choose a winner but then realise that their entry is invalid for any reason you can invalidate & repick another winner. This is useful if perhaps you asked users to complete a certain task & they didn’t complete it, or if the user subscribed to a mailing list but has unsubscribed when you checked again.

Automatic Fraud Protection

We use a number of techniques to detect fraudluent behaviour, this happens in real-time within

5 minutes of an entry being received. This protection ensures that you will see reduced entry manipulation, plus you will not see those emails getting carried through to your 3rd party mailing lists.

If an action has been invalidated you will see the reason why in your actions list:

You will see the invalidated number of actions in the email we send you when the contest is over, you will also see them highlighted on the Reporting tab of your contest:

Note: x entries were invalidated due to suspicion of cheating.

How Good Is The Fraud Filter

We’ve been working on this for over a year now. It’s been designed to be as non-intrusive for the end users as possible, whilst protecting your campaigns from spam (and saving you time).

The widget also has mechanisms in place to require extra layers of validation from users, if say for example lots of people are all entering from the same office at once.

How Does This Affect Users?

Users will not be aware if their actions are in invalid in the backend, they will still see that they have the full number of credited entries.

How Does This Affect My Reporting?

Invalid actions do not count towards your reporting on the Reporting tab.

You are shown exactly how many actions have automatically be flagged, then given the chance to manually review them yourself.

Why Does Gleam Not Provide IP Addresses Of Entrants?

We often get this particular question, and it relates to the privacy of our entrants.

Gleam is a free platform that allows anyone to collect data from their campaigns and attribute it to an email address. IPs on their own aren’t dangerous, but once you start showing IP addresses that are linked to identifable user data they can be used maliciously. At Gleam we are very serious about protecting the data of our customers, but also the data of the entrants that enter competitions too.

We still provide a robust way to filter entries from the same IP address (without exposing the actual IP). Simply click the Globe icon next to any action and you’ll see a comprehensive list of all other actions completed under that IP address. It’ll even show actions that we’ve already marked as invalid.

Announcing Winners

Once you have chosen all your winners you can choose to announce them in the widget with or without avatars. We will never reveal the full name of the winner, just the first name & first letter of the surname.

Please note that once you announce winners in the widget you must unannounce them if you wish to invalidate or repick a winner.

Announcing Your Winners on Social Media

It’s important to add a layer of legitimacy to your campaigns so that users can see that you are awarding prizes, it will increase overall trust and ensure your campaigns continue to be successful.

Considering announcing your Winners on social channels like Twitter, Facebook or Instagram with a simple post:

Then get your winners to pose or take photos with their prizes and link them on social media too:

Choosing Competition Winners Gleam gives you full flexibility on how you choose winners for your competition. We base our winners around the number of prizes that you have allocated, so if you