Welcome everyone to A Modern Nonprofit Podcast. Today, we explored the importance of websites, nonprofit marketing, and how to bridge the gaps between departments to achieve digital success.
When we think marketing, we think of getting the word out and expressing the mission behind the help non-profit organizations (NPOs) provide. In 2023, this goes much deeper than we could imagine. There are many tools and resources that can be utilized to enhance NPOs, especially online.
We invited David Pisarek of Wow Digital, Inc. to give us a behind the scenes look at SEOs, attracting and retaining visits to websites, digital marketing and much more!
David started Wow Digital Inc. with the goal of providing effective websites, branding and design for Canadian based charity organizations. With over 20 years in the nonprofit sector, passionately working to revolutionize it one website at a time. An expert in design and programming, he’s also an educator at the college level. With a track record of 240+ complete projects since 2016, David and his team are the go-to experts.
We welcome David to the show!
We engaged in an in-depth conversation with David, where we unraveled a series of questions regarding nonprofit website redesign and the importance of web analytics.
- When should nonprofits consider a full redesign on their website?
- What does that process look like?
- What should it include?
- How often should a NPO consider a redesign?
Of course, there is much to learn about in each of the posed questions. David stresses that websites are not something that are sat and forgotten about. Or ‘one and done’ as he calls them.
They need constant love and care. A part of that care comes from measuring analytics. A free tool that can help organizations achieve this is Google Analytics. It’s important to note that Google Analytics 3 is the system that has been used for years. And as of July 20th, 2023, this was updated to GA4. So, if analytics are the next move for business, make sure GA4 is the system used.
GA isn’t just for tech-nerds; it’s a great tool that can help businesses identify what consumers, donors, or website searchers are looking for and take them back to the website over and over again. Keep an eye on:
- What keywords are being used?
- Which call to actions are listed?
- Where are consumers landing on the business website?
- Are they navigating 3 to 4 pages in order to find what they are looking for?
All of these are key questions that businesses should be asking when it comes to analyzing their web traffic.
David makes a great point regarding website analytics. The word ‘conversion’ is a data point that can be measured. So for example, on a for-profit’s page this may mean that a conversion leads to an eventual sale. This has a different definition for NPOs. A conversion data point may indicate converted volunteers, donations, or simply subscribing to an email or newsletter.
Not only is it important to understand what data points to pay attention to, but also how they differ from business to business.
Revamping a Website
Before Tosha and David take a deeper dive into the topic of SEOs, David compliments Tosha’s question about a website revamp.
He and his team did an audit that lead to 5 indicators for revamping a website:
- Is the page layout unique or common in comparison to other websites?
- How old does the site look?
- Building more off of this point, how does the website look on a smartphone? Is it compatible? Google will rank the site lower if it isn’t mobile friendly – certainly something to consider.
- Is your mission and purpose clear as day on the website?
- Is the website accessible?
- World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) is a website that creates accessibility guidelines. For example, when defining accessibility is the website accessible for an individual that may be physically impaired? The tiny detail that goes into naming a photo on a website could play a huge role in this consideration.
- Finally, how identifiable is the business contact information?
Number 5 may seem like a small task in the big scheme of things, but this is actually a great segway into the SEO conversation. Even if your organization is completely remote, putting a PO Box on your website can do wonders. Why? When people search for things near them (like volunteer opportunities), Google uses their location to find the best match.
In most cases, each device holds an IP address that gives Google some idea of your location. Because of this, when searching for ‘volunteering opportunities’ while the IP is in, let’s say the St. Louis, MO region, then Google can direct individuals to a website associated with that area.
Piecing the conversation together, NPOs are a different breed than for profit businesses. They still require constant measurement and effort, but the data points that are studied are much different. How this plays into the website traffic and SEO conversation, is what makes all the impact.
For example, revenue may increase in the winter months because of a historically associated ‘giving season’. Therefore, measuring data on a quarterly basis may be more effective when it comes to the NPO’s website as opposed to week over week or month over month analytics.
NPOs also work on a conservative budget basis, meaning that they can stretch a dollar.
With this, they may not be able to pay an individual, group, or department to only analyze data points for their website development. Looking at the numbers on a quarterly basis can help whomever lands this task a better window for analysis and time management.
Want to connect with David and his team? Email him at David@wowdigital.com or check out their website, wowdigital.com. His team also works with NPOs and website development by providing templates and website management through a website called, Mighty NPO. By using the coupon code charitycfo, this may qualify your business for a lifetime discount up to 70%.
To hear the full story, listen to our podcast here.