As a nonprofit, your goal to convince donors to give begins at your website—the public-facing home base of your operations. Just like any other company website, yours should be easily navigable, aesthetically appealing, and comprehensive. Most importantly, any nonprofit website needs the following five basic elements.
1. Streamlined Donation Page
While website visitors may end up clicking through to your donation page, fully intending to make a gift, your donation page itself can still influence whether they make it or not. Make sure that your donation page doesn’t have any links that would distract and direct people off the page before they make their gift. The overall page should be short and sweet, capturing only the most important information necessary. If your donation page includes images, make sure they’re high-quality.
Include links to your organization’s social media accounts in your website’s sidebar or footer. Don’t forget to list them in your newsletters and email signatures too.
As you create blog content—an effective way of building trust with your supporters and prospective donors, demonstrating the value of your work, and building up your SEO rankings—make sure your social media links are also visible.
You also want to give visitors the option to share your content on other social media platforms. You can use tools such as Share This so that readers can share material that resonates with them most.
3. Individual Staff Pages
Show site visitors the faces behind your cause. Showcasing your staff members’ values, career histories, and ties to the organization injects authenticity and humanizes your brand. Staff pages also accentuate the fact that your nonprofit is comprised of truly passionate and hard-working individuals.
You can also use these pages to share staff members’ social media accounts and personal websites, which can allow visitors to further connect with them. The beauty of social media is that it fosters organic personal connection and promotes the accessibility of your organization—not to mention that people tend to gravitate to individuals. Lastly, individual pages can potentially benefit your site’s overall SEO by ranking them alongside your staff members.
4. Responsive Design
Responsive design allows your website to adjust to fit any screen size, which allows for comfortable viewing on any device. Without it, it makes it painful—if not impossible—for mobile viewers to navigate and view your website and its content. In other words, it’s a great way to scare away potential donors and volunteers.
Being mobile-friendly is so prevalent and important that Google’s search algorithm prioritizes websites that are responsive for users searching on a mobile device.
You should ensure that each and every page on your site is mobile-responsive as the majority of people predominantly rely on their mobile devices to use the internet.
5. Financial Transparency
Donors want to know their money is going. Provide clear insight into your organization’s financials to foster trust with your existing and potential supporters. Some key information that you can include are your annual reports, Form 990, and 501(c)(3) documentation. It’s also a good idea to have visuals on your website that outline the impact of donations of different sizes. Connect the dots for visitors between their gifts and the difference they can make.
Although this is far from being a complete list, these key elements are a solid foundation for your nonprofit website. Remember that your website—from its content, to its navigability, to even its color scheme—is your biggest vehicle to attract online donations and in turn, drive the overall success of your nonprofit.
Reuben Yonatan is the founder and CEO of GetVoIP and GetCRM, trusted VoIP and CRM comparison resources that help companies understand and choose a business communication solution for their specific needs. With a 10-year track record in building, growing, and strategically shaping operational functionality in all his ventures, Reuben helps small business owners align strategy with culture and improve overall company infrastructure.
The Nonprofit's Guide to a Strong Online Presence
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