5 Tips To Help Your Nonprofit Grow Its Online Presence
As more and more donors and volunteers look online to learn about causes that matter to them, a strong online presence has never been more critical for nonprofit organizations.
This is why it’s important to use effective tactics to promote your online presence and attract new supporters. Below, we’ll discuss five tips to improve your nonprofit’s online presence and make it more visible on the web.
Whether you are a well-established nonprofit or just starting out, your online presence is crucial to your success. Potential volunteers and supporters often use search engines, social media, and other online sources to find organizations they want to support.
Follow these top tips to reach a broader audience, attract more donors and volunteers, and ultimately make a more significant impact.
Tip #1: Optimize your website
Did you know the average person forms an opinion of a website in less than a second? That’s how long you have to make a good first impression. If your website is slow, difficult to navigate, or doesn’t look professional, you’re likely turning away potential supporters.
Nonprofit organizations must have a well-designed, user-friendly website to establish a solid first impression with potential donors. That means user-friendly navigation, clear calls to action, and compelling content.
Donation or volunteer links should be prominent. You should also ensure your site is mobile-responsive so it can be accessed from any device.
You can use website builder software, or you can hire a web designer or developer to help create a high-quality site.
Tip #2: Use social media
Social media is a powerful tool for reaching your target audience, as 87% of nonprofits worldwide have discovered. To increase your reach, ensure your organization has accounts on major social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. You can use these sites to share engaging content that emphasizes your impact and mission.
A consistent social media presence is also necessary to create a valuable asset, social media capital. Organizations often overlook social media capital—an asset created by interacting online—as a valuable resource.
Social media capital for nonprofits follows these steps:
Target specific users to build a following.
Grow and nurture your network by building relationships.
Accumulate capital in the form of network size, position, and engagement, as well as brand identity and reputation based on attributes such as commitment, identity, and trust.
Convert immediate capital into actions or outcomes, such as encouraging a donation or requesting followers to complete a survey.
Leverage social media capital for long-term, strategic goals—like raising money through your network to purchase resources that will help you launch a new initiative.
Following these steps, your nonprofit can leverage social media to maximize its impact.
Tip #3: Try email marketing
Another way nonprofits can grow their reach online is through an email marketing campaign. Email marketing can take many forms, from e-newsletters to event invites. Just be sure to segment your list, so you’re only sending relevant information to each group of people. And make sure your emails are mobile-friendly—42% of email is opened on a mobile device.
Emails have a greater impact on recipients than you may think. In fact, 26% of online donors say that email is their top motivation for donating.
Welcome emails are a great place to start if you’re just beginning email marketing. Saying thank you to your followers helps them feel valued and appreciated.
Tip #4: Engage your audience with compelling content
Your nonprofit’s website and social media platforms are great places to share stories, photos, and videos about your work. But it’s not enough to just post content—your content should be engaging. That means using strong visuals, telling personal stories, and writing compelling copy.
Blogging or creating videos are great approaches. You can also share stories about your staff, volunteers, and beneficiaries to show the human side of your work. Don’t forget to use strong calls to action if you want viewers to donate, sign up for your e-newsletter, or share your content with their networks.
Tip #5: Consider advertising
Paid advertising isn’t within reach of many nonprofits, but it can be a very effective way to expand your online presence if you can afford it. Platforms like Google or Facebook can be used to target people based on their interests or location. Be sure to track your results so you can find out what works and where to focus your efforts in the future.
If your budget is limited, consider applying for a Google Ad Grant. Through this generous initiative, Google gives grants to nonprofit organizations each month that can be used to purchase Google search ads.
Bonus tip: Share your story
Storytelling is crucial to nonprofit success. Be sure to tell the story of your nonprofit’s founding and mission on your website and social media accounts, as well as stories of people you’ve helped, obstacles you’ve overcome, and the impact you’ve made. Storytelling is a fantastic way to build relationships with volunteers, donors, and the community.
Expand the reach of your nonprofit with a strong online presence
Your nonprofit can grow its online presence and reach new supporters by following these valuable and practical tips. Just be consistent, post engaging content, and focus on building relationships. With a bit of effort, you can make a significant impact.
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Social Media Capital for Nonprofits: How to Accumulate It, Convert It, and Spend It, Nonprofit Quarterly
The Ultimate Mobile Email Statistics Overview, emailmonday
Global Trends in Giving Report, Nonprofit Tech For Good
Google Ad Grants, Google for Nonprofits