Good Nonprofit Website Design Principle #4 of 5 (Part 1)

Have you ever gone out with someone who was a knockout in appearance, but 15 minutes later you discovered his or her vocabulary was limited to grunts or giggles? Many non profit website designs are like that too – they look great, but they have no non profit marketing substance. And that’s a major headache!

Principle #4: Develop a hard-working site to avoid the problems of a website that’s all looks and no brains.

Here are some practical suggestions for creating a hard-working website that facilitates online fundraising, non profit marketing, asset accumulation and more:

Practical Tip #1: Develop an incentive-based opt-in landing page to encourage people to sign up for your ministry e-newsletter. For example, a well-crafted non profit website design will take into account the critical functionality needed in order to achieve your original objectives.  It’s not just about looks, but about smarts as well.

When I say smarts, I’m referring in part to how well your site converts your visitors into usable assets, such as lists, leads, gifts, or sales.  These are the names and addresses, both email and snail mail, of people who want to hear from you, buy your products, or support your ministry through gifts, both today and tomorrow.

Believe me, if you send email fundraising letters to people who don’t want to hear from you, you’ve got big headaches in store.  So ideally, everyone you deal with is someone who has opted in to receive something from you online: your e-newsletter, free information, non profit marketing re: your products, etc. 

Practical Tip #2: Develop an electronic welcome series via an auto-responder email system that immediately sends your leads the information they requested.

If your site is intended to generate leads, does it fully function in that capacity? If so, it should allow people to interact with you by signing up for an offer—a newsletter or something else of value to them (not to you, to them). Your well-crafted non profit website design will have easy-to-use and convincing pages that persuade people to give you their contact information and allow them to do it easily. 

Follow up your email reply with a Welcome Kit offer – a packet of information about your ministry sent through snail mail. Typical Pathmaker Marketing clients experience a 63% conversion rate of enrollment into the Welcome Kit offer after just prior having signed up for email offers. Once your welcome Kits are sent out, have someone follow up with a telephone call as the last step of an efficient lead follow-up system.

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