Nonprofit Website Mistakes and How to Get your Website on Track

By | August 19, 2016

Nonprofit Website Mistakes

It is still shocking to me that most nonprofits view their website as an informational tool. They describe the mission of the organization, how it was started, and a phone number to call in order to donate or volunteer.

But if your website is set up like this, you’re hurting yourself and likely killing the opportunity you have to gain new donors. A successful online strategy is one that attracts visitors to your website, engages them with content they want, and converts them to act

A nonprofit website should advance your mission, not simply state your mission — it is a huge mistake if you miss this point.

The baseline for an effective online marketing strategy has been raised for all nonprofits. A site that builds trust is important and I don’t want to underestimate how important it is, but now you need to do a bit more.

Getting your donors and your audience to act is everything. I am not talking about a donation either – that is super unrealistic.

You need to be asking yourself: “What will site visitors find valuable and how will I get them to move closer to making a meaningful connection – giving me their email address?”

Ways to empower your audience

Here are a couple of suggestions on how to make your website more interactive and how to get people to take action towards your nonprofit:

  • Social Plugins: Adding a Facebook “like” button and including the ability to share a page on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest is an easy way to add some basic interaction. Do it yesterday. There are no excuses. I love Addthis as it has a lot of great functionality.
  • Incentives or Freebies: Offering something for free is the baseline to get people to give you their information. It’s a win-win; they get something for free, and you get their contact information. It’s a building block towards building a relationship with your customers. The deliverable can cost you nothing, as long as premium has perceived value to your target audience. A nonprofit I work with has an online store; I included a popup window with a 10% off code when you sign up to receive their free content email. We went from getting almost zero subscribers from their online store to getting several a day. The interesting thing is that only 23% took advantage of the offer — well worth the small discount to get highly qualified leads.
  • Share things: Most feel that marketing now means you have to generate the content yourself. You can get a lot of engagement by sharing other people’s content. If it is content that would interest your supporter base, sharing it makes you seem more the expert.

If you wish someone could look and evaluate your website for free and tell you what you’re doing right and wrong, then click below and sign up for our free website evaluation!


Jeffery James
Jeffery James
Jeffery is the Creative Director and Principal of Spire2. He brings marketing expertise from a variety of industries. He excels at understanding clients' corporate objectives, translating them into brand positioning and executing marketing materials that exceed expectations.