Feb 11, 2022 Written by Tamar Barlev

Nonprofit Web Design: How to Propel Your Org Digitally

nonprofit web design

Your nonprofit is breaking boundaries and changing the world. But you want to grow its efforts and scale its impacts even more. We get that. And we support it. So how do you propel its mission digitally? Through great nonprofit web design.

As professional nonprofit website and application developers, we know a thing or two about beautiful nonprofit web design. We’ve already written about boosting conversion through nonprofit web development, nonprofit app trends, and fundraising.

But here we are—with a handy list of some UX/UI nonprofit web design best practices.

Want some examples? Check out our case studies on our work with the World Wildlife Fund and the IMWCA.

The Importance of Great Nonprofit Web Design

It’s an ever-digitizing world. You know that—I know that. And just as companies are rushing to grow their digital footprints, so are nonprofits.

Online fundraising revenue grew 23% over the past year—up from 15% YOY. Additionally, online recurring donation revenue—which, on average, amounts to almost 5x annually than one-time donations—grew by 40%.

And if that’s not enough to convince you of the importance of great nonprofit web design—online donation pages had an average conversion rate of 9%. On desktop, it’s 21%.

Generationally and trend speaking, the stats also lean for nonprofits to expand digitally. Nowadays, 67% of worldwide nonprofits accept online donations—and for a reason. With a strong online presence, nonprofits can convert Gen Zers—57.3% of whom research the nonprofits to which they donate, before giving.

How to Create Beautiful Nonprofit Web Design

Alright. So we’ve established the importance of a great nonprofit web design. But how do you prop your nonprofit up for digital success?

A Bold, Compelling Donate Button—Always Above the Fold

The most essential feature to great nonprofit web design? A bold donate button that’s always there. That means embedding it into your main navigation that’s on every page.

Moreover, it also means using compelling microcopy for the donate button. So, rather than “Donate Now,” try “Save a Tiger Today.” You want your microcopy to convey a donation’s impact—and its urgency.

Demonstrative Images and Videos

We’ve all seen the heart-wrenching image of the lone polar bear floating on a broken iceberg. Just writing that made me sad. 

But in any case—humans often need to see things to believe them. And there are few things more motivating than visual evidence.

Therefore, images and videos are the best tools to spread awareness of the need and urgency of your cause and your organization’s impact.

So, use them—and if you want to get fancy, even augmented reality (AR)—to demonstrate what you’re addressing, why it’s imperative to address it, and how you help. 

Clear Mission Presentation

You want to make an excellent case for your cause. So—just as any for-profit organization—it’s crucial to present your nonprofit’s “value proposition.”

In this case, rather than a value prop, it’s going to look like stating—very clearly—the problem, statement, and impact. And, in that order.

As the visitor scrolls through the page, you want to orient them. Therefore, you need to guide them through awareness of the problem you’re addressing, the solution (statement), and the motivation to be a part of the solution (impact).

Include statistics with credible citations and language that appeals to your visitor’s empathy. Of course, they’re already on the page—meaning they’re already interested in the cause. But to hook them onto your solution, they must develop the same sense of urgency and care you feel towards your mission.

Evidence of Accomplishments and Impacts

A huge motivator for people to join your efforts is seeing your progress. So make sure your impact statistics are up there—front and center—as well as in other content marketing, such as your blog.

Transparency is so important for prospective donors and volunteers. They want to know you’re making progress in what you’re setting out to do.

Content ideas can include:

  • impact stories
  • case studies
  • statistic compilations on the need for and impacts of your organization
  • documentation of outreach events (photos, videos)
  • supporter spotlights of volunteers and donors
  • newsletters to keep supporters informed about your efforts and progress

Transparency with Your Financials

As we mentioned, donors are becoming savvier and savvier—and more skeptical. Ergo, when it comes to how you’re using their money and time—supporters care very much about how it’s spent.

Therefore, publishing your financials and how funds drive different facets of your mission is incredibly important to demonstrate trustworthiness, transparency, and impact.

Think stats such as donation amounts, what percentage of donations go to management vs. marketing and outreach vs. efforts.

So, if yours is a nonprofit addressing food insecurity—how many meals does $100 of donations provide? And how do you split that $100 between organizational management and actual meals delivered?

Donation Page Nonprofit Web Design Best Practices

There are some critical best practices for nonprofit web design of donation pages. They include:

  • Customizing your donation pages per visitor segment or creating targeted donation landing pages.
  • Offering recurring donation and custom donation options, and suggesting tiered donation amounts with the listed impacts of each ($5 buys one meal, $25 funds 8 school lunches, $100 feeds a family for a week, etc.)
  • Embedding a secure payment portal into the page rather than sending the prospective donor to a third-party website. That means displaying the secure payment certification and your nonprofit’s logo front and center on the donation page and the footer of every page.
  • Saying thank you with a grateful donation submission message that reinforces the impacts of their donation. It should also encourage the donor to keep in touch with a newsletter signup box.

Well, this was a lot. We know.

Coincidentally, hi, we’re Goji Labs—a product and software development consultancy with experience in designing, “rescuing,” and deploying hundreds of products.

Looking to develop a new app or revamp an existing one? Need some product strategy or mobile app and software development help?

Have any general questions about who we are and our authority on the subject?

Reach us at GojiLabs.com or drop us a line.

– Goji Labs