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Nowadays, a nonprofit website and online marketing go a long way than years ago because nonprofits can no longer rely just on calls, mails, and events to collect donations. This is echoed by Statista, the world’s leading provider of market and consumer data, and BDO, one of the world’s top consulting firms.
According to Statista, the first two biggest challenges for nonprofits in the US and Canada in 2019 are small staff and transitions in staff (18%), as well as donor cultivation, acquisition, retention, and communications (11%).
BDO said in an annual benchmarking survey in 2019 that two of the top 10 trends in the nonprofit industry are technology, and engagement through technology. First, 64% of nonprofits are planning to invest in new tech, including management systems, data analytics, automation, AI, IoT, and VR. Secondly, nonprofits engage their constituents and donors via social media, outreach and communications strategies with a constant stream of content. 66% of nonprofits favor management systems that assist with fundraising or social media.
Having a professional nonprofit website does not imply a big budget. Whether you are revamping your website or building a new one, here are some tips.
What A Nonprofit Website Can Do?
First, a nonprofit website allows your nonprofit organization to be found more easily.
Secondly, many organizations have an online presence. Therefore, a nonprofit website allows you to build credibility and awareness.
Thirdly, a website can do the following for your organization.
- convey your mission and cause to your supporters
- engage your current donors, fundraisers, and volunteers
- expand your potential donors, fundraisers, and volunteers
- build a powerful narrative for recurring donations
Fourthly, you can offer compelling content to keep your website at the top of search results pages i.e. higher SEO ranking on search engines like Google. Besides, you may share your posts on social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram, etc. This can funnel your social media visitors and followers back to your website.
Lastly, a website can tell your audience a lot of information like upcoming events and fundraising campaigns. It can educate your audience and turn them into volunteers and donors.
What Options Are Available?
Deciding which content management system (CMS) to use to create and manage a nonprofit website is the very first and yet the most critical step. However, there are tons of options available. Below is a summary of the most popular CMS you may use to create a nonprofit website.
- Hosted platforms like Wix, Weebly, Squarespace and WordPress.com where you can find nonprofit website templates
- Self-hosted platforms like WordPress, Joomla, and Drupal
The World’s Renowned Nonprofit Websites Use WordPress
WordPress is the world’s leading content management system (CMS) trusted by over 35% of all the website users worldwide. A compelling reason why many well-known nonprofits in the world use WordPress to power their websites is because it is open source.
Amnesty International Korea (in Korean only) promotes and defends human rights in South Korea and around the world.
The Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) was founded by Dr. Jane Goodall as a global nonprofit committed to community-centered conservation, whether it be protecting chimpanzees and great apes in Africa while improving the lives of communities around ape habitat, or supporting youth-led efforts around the world to improve their own communities. Donate to JGI.
Children’s Rights is a national watchdog organization advocating on behalf of abused and neglected children in the United States.
A WordPress nonprofit website has the following main features.
- Publish with Ease
- Publishing Tools
- User Management
- Media Management
- Built-in Comments
- Fully Customizable
- Browser Compatibility
- Multilingual Blogs
- Own Your Data
What Should A Nonprofit Website Have?
First, to serve the aforesaid purposes, a nonprofit website should the following features.
- Home with prominent calls-to-action like Donate and Join Us buttons
- About the organization
- A user-friendly, HTTPS secure, and straightforward donation page prominently linked from the home page
- A blog to build trust with your supporters and donors, showcase your work and activities, and build up SEO rankings
- A press releases page
- A volunteer signup page
- Social media links, shares, and feeds
- A staff and board member page with biographies and social media accounts that humanizes your brand, fosters personal connection, and benefit SEO
- A page for annual reports with financials to foster trust with your donors
Besides, you should consider using content to market your mission and cause. They include videos, podcasts, whitepapers, eBooks, webinars, guides, checklists, and quizzes.
Finally, you should also ensure the following in your nonprofit website.
- Good UI/UX in terms of design, colors, fonts, and navigation
- Short and concise calls-to-action that stand out with compelling words
- Website performance optimization
- Mobile-friendly responsive design
Conclusion – The Best Solution
What is the best solution to create and manage a nonprofit website?
Nonprofits can experience the growth they need to make an impact in the world through a professional website that powerfully tells the heartwarming stories of those you have helped.
A nonprofit website should make it easy to find out more about their cause, make donations, become involved, as well as find contact information and press releases. Oftentimes a nonprofit website needs to offer more than a corporate website.
For this reason, open source platforms like WordPress and Drupal are highly recommended because they allow to scale up your nonprofit website with customizations and add-on features more easily and cost-effectively.