Free Ways To Effectively Market Your Nonprofit Online
Marketing your nonprofit online - at no cost to you.
By now, you would have read many articles (and possibly books) about how to successfully market your nonprofit. You would have come across the typical list of strategies: create a website, earn newsletter subscribers, and of course the always popular (but effective) strategy, use social media. In this article we want to help you supplement those strategies with some free tools that you can use together or independently to market your nonprofit even more efficiently.
Google's nonprofit program: Google Grants.
Known as the "nonprofit edition of Adwords," this advertising platform on Google was specifically designed with nonprofits in mind. A Google Grant equips nonprofits with $10,000 in in-kind advertising with Google. Through Google Grants your nonprofit can pick keywords or search terms that can be used to bring users to your website, each of which is given a price "per click." Each time your ad is clicked $2 will be deducted from your $10,000 budget. Once your $10,000 budget is spent your ads will no longer show to avoid any over charges.This will help your nonprofit promote itself online by driving traffic to your website. Take a look below at our example of how your ad would look when you use Google Grants.
Maximizing your clicks: Google Analytics.
Driving clicks back to your website is a great place to start, but it won't help your nonprofit if you don't know how your users are interacting with your website. This is where Google Analytics comes in. With Google Analytics you'll be able to measure how users interact with your website, their demographic, the duration of their visit to your website, and more. Additionally, it gives insights on how visitors find and use your site, and how to keep them coming back. It is simple and easy to use for nonprofits of all shapes and sizes.
Here are some other key points we think you should know about Google Analytics:
• Free to start.
• 30 second set-up. Embed a piece of code into your website to analyze its progress.
• Has adjustable dashboards that display reports on stats it has gathered on your website.
• Includes tools that measure how users are interacting with your website across all devices, including mobile. This includes average time users spend on your website, how they found your website, how many visitors your site gets, how often people return to your website, and how many people are looking at your website at any given moment.
• Good way to gauge your audience and the demographic that your nonprofit seems to be attracting the most.
Taking your clicks one step further: Crazy Egg.
After embedding and using Google Analytics on your website you will be able to gauge how your website is performing. But by adding Crazy Egg to the equation, you will be able to take your website performance beyond demographics and see where users are scrolling through on your website and what they are clicking on. One of the things that nonprofits find when using Crazy Egg is that their users are clicking on parts of their website that aren't even links. Crazy Egg can help remedy that problem for your nonprofit.
It is extremely easy to install and can produce a high ROI (return on investment). In addition:
• Free to use for the first 30 days.
• After 30 days, $9 per month.
• Dynamic heat map that shows where users are clicking, and which parts of your website are getting the cold shoulder.
• Scroll map tool that show how many people scroll down your pages and where most people stop.
• Confetti tool that points out where users are coming from, and who clicks on what the most.
More free clicks. More than blogging: Inbound Marketing.
According to Hubspot, "Since 2006, inbound marketing has been the most effective marketing method for doing business online. Instead of the old outbound marketing methods of buying ads, buying email lists, and praying for leads, inbound marketing focuses on creating quality content that pulls people toward your company and product, where they naturally want to be. By aligning the content you publish with your customer’s interests, you naturally attract inbound traffic that you can then convert, close, and delight over time."
Inbound marketing and blogging go hand in hand: it is blogging strategically. This doesn't necessarily mean blogging about updates on your latest campaigns or about your accomplishments; it means blogging about topics that will draw people in or bring them back to your website to read more. For example: Say your organization provides music lessons for children and adults. Blogging strategically would mean composing articles about 'improving your piano skills' or 'how to improve your singing voice.' After creating these articles, ask yourself: Did this article solve the problem? Did it provide the information needed? Was anything missed or left out? Can this article say more about the subject? This strategy will only work if you are 100% explicit and diligent about the quality of information you are providing. If not, users will turn to another website.
With inbound marketing and blogging:
• Free to start.
• Once a blog post has gone through the process of writing and editing, it will not need any additional work.
• At minimum, your nonprofit should publish 3 articles a week.
• You will see website traffic increase 3 to 4 months after you start blogging.
Engaging with users immediately: Tawk To (chat box)
Let's take the next step even beyond Google Analytics and Crazy Egg. Most nonprofits launch a website and expect users to completely understand what they do right off the bat by showing personal statements, images, and infographics. While those things are key to welcoming users to your nonprofit, the reality is that most nonprofits who do not have an animated video on their website will lose most users. But say you already have all of those things in place and you want to expand on them. So what's another great way of making sure users know who you are? Simple. Add a chat box to your website using Tawk To.
With Tawk To, you'll be able to install a chat box on your website for free in about 60 seconds. Our website itself has a chat box installed through Tawk To and we wouldn't recommend unless we use it too! Tawk To does not charge a monthly fee or put a limit on how many agents (representatives) you can use for this service. The best part is you can log in from your desktop or sync it to your mobile phone, so even on the go you will always be online and never miss an opportunity to engage with your users.
The process is pretty straightforward. Once installed on your website, you can create a 'trigger' and have a chat automatically start after a user has been on your website for 2 minutes. You can choose up to 10 minutes prior to the trigger being activated. You can create an automated customized message to greet users such as "Hi there! Do you have any questions about what we do? Ask away!". Typically they may not respond, but it leaves the communication lines open for those who do have questions and decide to ask then. Engagement goes up, and so does the possibility of securing donations for your nonprofit.