Within this technologically savvy world, the day-to-day tasks are progressively becoming more online demanding and mobile friendly. For the public, they simply enjoy convenience over everything. The concept of clicking on a button and having it do all of the work has become one of the biggest game changers in whether or not a person will donate to a charity. But even with this knowledge, many nonprofits have made the mistake of not optimizing their sites as their main priority for reaching their financial donation goals.
As a social activist, I have taken my hobby of photography and have published a 234-paged hardcover coffee-table book that features my finest photographs of my travels through North America, Africa, Asia, and beyond with a primary focus on people in some of the poorest and most inhospitable places. The book calls into action the desperate poverty and food and water shortages that are occurring all around the world. While the images are meant to educate, the public of the difficulties many of my subjects encounter each and every day, they are also mean to speak loudly about their stories and what the viewers can do to help impact the world. While I can talk much about my site and my nonprofit organization, I have to of course want to highlight how I was able to influence my marketing through the improvement of my nonprofit website.
Below, you will find five helpful factors that can shape your site in the most optimal way for its visitors. Keep in mind, no matter how compelling the message is, the more difficult it is to donate, the harder it is to get donors.
1. Make it Social Media Friendly
With today’s growing social media market, it would be to your best effort to have various pages and Web 2.0 sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, or Pinterest highlighting your cause and your mission. Be sure that every page of your website has links to these social media profiles so that people can share and market your organization to the world. To go even further than this, try optimizing your social media properties to its fullest so that you can gain more visitors to your site.
2. Be Informative and Simple at the Beginning of your Site
No matter who is visiting, you want to make sure you are marketing the background, history, vision, goals, and previous work of your campaign. This can be done through separate tabs or though an ‘About’ page on the front of your website. Whatever is the case, you want to make sure that you are informative of your organization. Do not dive too in-depth with the jargon of your field. Save that stuff for a blog page. Instead, be informative and simple. Enter the perspective of a layperson. Introduce your organization as if they are new to the problem. This will allow you to shape your content in the most beneficial way possible.
3. Show your Story
Like every great nonprofit organization, they are storytellers. As much as you want to be informative and educational to your public, you also want to pull at the strings of their heart. The best way to do this is to gain their trust and attention through a heartfelt blog post, videos, images, or even graphs. One of the most impactful statements you can make with your organization is highlighting the numbers. The more quantifiable the cause is, the stronger support you can get from the overall public.
4. Streamline the Donating Process
As stated before, user-friendly websites tend to get the most donations just because they offer a simple clicking option. To truly understand this importance, look at your website from the perspective of a first-time visitor. Would you be able to understand the mission and navigate through the site to donate a specific amount? If not, try and see what you can do to make the donation page easily accessible. Some sites prominently feature a ‘Donate Now’ button at the top of every page. If you do not have that, try considering that option and see how affective it is with the public.
5. Provide a Blog
To truly educate and increase awareness of your charity, try creating a consistent blog page on your site. One thing to keep in mind is to make sure you are consistent with the page. Try blogging about the history of your organization, the existing problem, and steps your charity and organization is doing to work its way to a viable solution. This will allow your donors to learn more about the issue and understand what their donations can do to truly impact the world.