Today’s article dives into helpful strategies for optimizing nonprofit’s digital presence. Grant Hensel, CEO of Nonprofit Megaphone, has helped over 370 leading nonprofits worldwide manage Google Grants, and he provides his expertise.
As the world continues to digitize, it’s more important than ever for nonprofit organizations to have a solid and innovative web presence. While brick-and-mortar institutions still have an essential role to play, investing in your website is a great way to grow your audience and increase your brand recognition and support.
Website quality is vital because it affects every aspect of your digital presence. While you can use many methods to drive traffic to your website, you’re more likely to turn traffic into support with a high-quality website. A good website ensures that users can find the content they’re looking for and entices them to spend more time on your website.
With more time spent on your site, users can learn about your organization, engage with your content, and hopefully complete a practical action on your website. Each of these is a vital aspect of building supporters and can contribute to your organization’s long-term growth.
Increasing website quality is easier said than done, but some proven strategies will boost the overall quality of your website. At Nonprofit Megaphone, we help our clients acquire, manage, and utilize the Google Ad Grant. We recommend the Grant for any eligible nonprofit as it’s a great way to drive traffic to your website. Using the Grant successfully requires a great website, and we continually advise our clients on how they can improve. Here are some of the ways any nonprofit can improve the quality of its website:
- Find Ways To Boost Traffic and Engagement To Your Website
- Create Engaging Event Pages
- Establish A Blog Section
- Make Sure Your Site Is Accessible
Find Ways To Boost Traffic And Engagement To Your Website
Boosting traffic and engagement starts with having plenty of content. With more content, users have more ways they can discover and interact with your site. Most websites can accomplish this by creating a blog section, as blog posts are a simple and effective kind of content. In addition, you’ll want specialized pages that align with your goals. Donation pages and event pages are helpful, as they can focus on an advertising or communications campaign.
Creating content is especially important when conducting a digital marketing campaign. With the Google Ad Grant, organizations are more likely to achieve their goals if they have a plethora of high-quality content on their website. A diverse range of good content gives the grant manager plenty to work with, drastically reducing the chances of having your Grant suspended. This approach removes any precarity using the Google Ad Grant, ensuring that your organization has the foundation necessary to utilize the grant sustainably. This foundation will allow you to focus on creating more content and optimizing existing campaigns.
In addition to advertising campaigns, your organization will benefit from using SEO best practices to increase organic search traffic. SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, describes the process of tweaking your website to make it more likely to appear on search engine results pages. While SEO can be complicated at the highest levels of optimization, there are basic things you can do to ensure that your site has a decent SEO ranking and appears in organic search results:
- Keyword-optimize your content. Keyword optimization describes the process of aligning your content with the keywords that users are searching for.
- Use keyword research to learn what users are searching for and integrate those keywords into your content.
- Make sure your content is complete with meta-descriptions, titles, and images.
These small changes can dramatically impact your SEO rankings and instill valuable habits that increase the overall quality of your website.
Establish A Blog Section
For many websites, a blog section is the engine of high-quality content. Blogs give you an easy way to produce written and multimedia content constantly . Further, blogs can easily be found, browsed, and gives users a platform to engage with your website. Blogs are affordable to produce and are flexible enough to suit organizations of any size or mission. Whether you choose to write short articles or long-form essays, blogs give you the tools to meet the needs of your users.
Blogs are specifically useful for Search Engine Optimization. SEO is an important concept in digital marketing, as it describes the process of designing your website to appear more often in organic search results. To do this, your goal is to try to manipulate a very complex search algorithm in order to increase your site’s ranking. A higher ranking increases the frequency of your site appearing in any given search. Blogs help your SEO ranking because they can easily house SEO-optimized content. Keyword-optimized, long-form posts can boost your ranking tremendously, and a blog is the ideal home for this kind of content. Further, most website platforms have built-in blog features that aid SEO and help you retain visitors. These features ensure that a robust blog section will enhance the quality of your website.
If SEO isn’t a priority for your organization, a blog will help your paid ad or Google Ad Grant ventures tremendously. Advertising campaigns work by honing in on specific keywords and search queries. As such, a successful campaign will direct users to a page on your website that is relevant to their search.
For example, if a user is searching for “animal adoption” and is presented with an ad for your site, that user is more likely to engage with your organization if the ad takes them to your adoption page. The pages a user visits after clicking a link are called landing pages. Having a diverse range of landing pages is an important element of a successful website.
The blog section is a perfect place to house landing pages. Digital advertising campaigns benefit from having landing pages that cover nearly every topic relevant to your organization. A blog can help you cover these topics, either as long-form content or short, optimized landing pages.
Create Engaging Event Pages
Events are a great way to bolster support, build your audience, and engage with the community. Depending on your nonprofit’s mission, you may have various events, either live or online. Since events are so valuable for your organization, you should use your website to drive traffic to your event page and get more registrations.
An easy way to do this is by using Calls To Action and placing them on various pages on your website. CTAs can look like:
- Eye-catching buttons
- Pop out windows
- Text that asks the user to take a valuable next step.
Most pages on your website should contain a CTA of some kind, but a strong strategy is to modify these CTA’s to meet the current goals of your organization.
Using CTA’s to drive traffic to a registration page is a proven way to increase engagement. In addition, this strategy has added utility by guiding users to spend more time on your site and navigating through multiple pages. These metrics help determine overall engagement, but they also aid your website’s SEO rankings. Sites that retain visitors and keep them engaged are higher-quality websites.
Make Sure Your Site Is Accessible To All
Having the best content, layout, and design is crucial to a good website, but accessibility issues can improve the site’s overall performance. It’s essential to look under the hood once in a while and make sure that your website is operating successfully.
If your website isn’t correctly optimized for all devices, accessibility is easily undermined. Users are increasingly using mobile devices to use the internet. While most websites are designed for traditional computers, this design may not translate well to a mobile device, creating a frustrating and unintuitive user experience. Mobile devices are smaller and use a touch interface. As such, a website optimized for mobile will take advantage of these features. Many website platforms will optimize your site automatically, but it’s important to ensure that the experience is smooth for any user.
Technical problems can also plague an otherwise successful website. A bloated backend or website errors can affect the speed of your website. If a user grows impatient, they may be inclined to leave. Webmasters should also be wary of broken links. As you produce content and modify your website, make sure that users can still successfully navigate through your site.
There are many free tools available to help you maintain accessibility. Your team can use Google Lighthouse to evaluate your website for technical performance and accessibility. Using this audit, you can identify major issues and improve the overall quality of your site.
Increasing website quality is one of the most beneficial things a nonprofit can do. Not only does it enhance the visitor experience for existing users and supporters, but it lays the foundation for future growth and success. Better quality can generate more traffic, either through organic search or through advertising with the Google Ad Grant.
Further, a high-quality website is more likely to convert this traffic into something your organization finds valuable. By utilizing and building upon these tips, your organization can use its digital presence to build long-term growth.