How to Build a Non-Profit Website (It’s Cheaper Than You Might Think)

Themeisle capacity is free. When you purchase through referral links on our web site, we earn a deputation. Learn More Nonprofits succeed or fail on the potency of their ability to communicate their message and build an audience. Creating a non-profit web site plays a key function in helping your organization achieve both of those goals .
Building a web site is a great way to get the password out about your nonprofit organization. You can use it to share information and updates, make a persuasive argument, and convert people to get involved. And with the right approach, it will cost a lot less than you might think .
If you ’ re newfangled to the estimate of running your own site, don ’ thyroxine concern. In this scout we ’ ll share everything you need to know to get your non-profit web site off the background. Let ’ s leap out right field in !

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The essential elements of a non-profit website

An example of a non-profit website.An example of a non-profit website.
The way you set up and run your non-profit web site will obviously be alone, based on your recess, goals, and resources. however, as you begin to plan out your web site, there are a few things you ’ ll decidedly want to include .
A potent non-profit web site should have ( at a minimal ) :

  • A mission statement, telling visitors what you’re all about.
  • Plenty of details on what you do and why it matters.
  • A blog or news section, to keep people apprised of the most recent updates and successes.
  • Contact information, so interested parties can get in touch.
  • Headshots and bios for your organization’s key members, staff, or partners.
  • Compelling imagery, incorporated throughout your site.
  • A way to accept donations, if you solicit donations from the public.
  • A Call To Action (CTA) prompting visitors to sign up for an email list, volunteer, donate, or do whatever matters most to your organization.

This may seem like a lot, but putting together a locate encompassing all of these elements isn ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate difficult. All you need are the right fix of tools, along with a little time and patience .

How to build a non-profit website (in 6 easy steps)

As a non-profit organization, you probable don ’ t have a bunch of time and money to spare. All the same, you want a web site that ’ sulfur attractive, functional, and comfortable to use. The stick to six steps will take you through the serve of creating this type of web site quickly and cheaply .

1. Choose a platform for your non-profit website

The beginning thing you need to do is select a chopine to build your web site with. There are many choices, but they largely fall into three camps. You can develop a web site from chicken feed, sign up for a web site builder, or use a Content Management System ( CMS ) .
Unless you happen to have some talented developers already on circuit board, creating a site from nothing is normally costly and time-intensive. Website builders, on the other hand, are brassy and simpleton to use. however, they don ’ thyroxine offer much flexibility, nor do they give you much restraint over your site .
A CMS is the perfect middle crunch. This character of platform is typically open-source, which means you can download the software and use it to build your non-profit web site for free. What ’ s more, a quality CMS will provide an easy-to-use interface that lets you customize your site without any technical know-how .
For a non-profit locate, we ’ five hundred highly recommend WordPress :
The WordPress website.The WordPress website.
This CMS is beginner-friendly and has a large community willing to help whenever you run into difficulties. Most importantly for your non-profit web site, it ’ sulfur release and won ’ t want you to hire a developer .

2. Purchase a hosting plan and domain name

WordPress may be free to use, but building your non-profit web site involves a few belittled costs. You ’ ll indigence to register a knowledge domain name and select a host plan .
The sphere identify is your site ’ mho primary URL ( i.e., mynonprofitsite.org ). When deciding on a domain mention, you ’ re best off naming the site after your organization, or using a short, attention-getting phrase that summarizes your mission, as in saveourlibraries.org .
You ’ ll besides need to choose a top flush Domain ( TLD ), such as .com or .net. We ’ d highly recommend using .org, as people are placid more likely to trust non-profit organizations using this TLD. If your budget allows, however, you may besides want to purchase the .com adaptation of your world name and redirect it to your site .
In order to get your locate on-line, you ’ ll besides need to sign up for a host design, which is the “ engine ” that powers your web site and makes it available to other people – Bluehost is a good option when you ’ re just getting started. Another benefit of Bluehost is that it gives you a free domain mention, which you can choose during the signup work .
Bluehost free domain nameBluehost free domain name
Bluehost will besides help install WordPress for you, which means that you can get start customizing your web site right away .

3. Pick out a theme to style your site

By this item, you should have a basic WordPress web site up and running. now, you ’ ll want to give it a design that showcases your non-profit ’ second deputation. fortunately, this is a undertaking you can ‘ fast cut ’ by choosing the right WordPress theme .
In a nutshell, your locate ’ sulfur theme controls how your site looks and is visually structured. This means that even if you ’ re not a architect, you can select the stylus and appearance you want.

What ’ s more, there are a draw of themes designed specifically for non-profit sites. This means the expressive style, layout, and elements are customized to match the needs of organizations like yours. Some even come with multiple templates or show pages, each designed to match a particular type of non-profit organization .
You can choose from many free options in the WordPress Theme Directory, merely by searching for themes with the keyword “ not profit ” ( or “ nonprofit ” ) :
WordPress themes for a nonprofit website.WordPress themes for a nonprofit website.
If you have the budget, you may besides want to check out some premium non-profit themes as they ’ re often a short more flexible. General commercial enterprise themes frequently work well, excessively .

4. Build your site’s basic pages

once you ’ ve installed your chosen subject, you ’ ll want to take some clock time to customize it. This means adding your own imagination and post, equally well as tweaking the style and design to fit your organization. How you do this will vary by theme, but the best place to start is by visiting the WordPress Customizer via your site ’ mho splashboard :
The WordPress Customizer.The WordPress Customizer.
future, you ’ ll want to create the basic pages that will make up your web site. Building a page in WordPress is square, and your composition will probably give you batch of show content to work with. At a minimum, you ’ ll want to include the following pages :

  • A home page that lets visitors know what your organization is all about (preferably with a strong mission statement and lots of visuals).
  • An easy-to-find contact page, with multiple ways to get in touch.
  • One or more pages providing information about what your organization does and why it matters.
  • An ‘archive’ page to host your blog or news updates.
  • A page featuring your organization’s key members or partners, with headshots and bios if possible.

Of course, wear ’ thyroxine forget to add in that vital CTA. This could be a donate release, a newsletter sign-up kind, or a volunteer application. Just make sure it ’ sulfur prominently placed and stands out from the pillow of your site .
If you want a little sting more flexibility over how your pages look, a WordPress page builder plugin will let you design your pages using a ocular, drag-and-drop editor program .

5. Consider a donation plugin

We mentioned that give voice “ plugin ” above. Whereas themes change how your web site looks, plugins aid you add functionality to your locate .
You can find plugins for all sorts of things, but one of the most helpful for a non-profit web site is a contribution plugin. These plugins will help you accept donations and run fundraising campaigns. beyond that, they will besides help you manage donors, including an easy-to-access database, ampere well as the ability to generate the tax forms donors need .
One of the most democratic contribution plugins is the GiveWP plugin :
If you ’ d like to learn more, we have an entire post on how to accept donations on WordPress .

6. Optimize your site for search engines

stopping point but not least, you ’ ll want to consider how people will find your non-profit web site. primarily, this will happen through search engines, which means carrying out some Search Engine Optimization ( SEO ) .
This is basically a collection of techniques to help your site crying highly in search engines. What ’ second worth note is that for a non-profit web site ( peculiarly for a smaller, locally-based operation ), ‘ local anesthetic SEO ’ will probably play a significant character. This involves optimizing your site to show up in searches by people who are physically nearby .
To get started with optimizing your locate, we ’ d recommend first installing the dislodge Yoast SEO plugin on your web site, and learning how to use it :
This childlike, so far potent tool will help you cover the basics of solid SEO. In accession, its developers besides offer a comprehensive examination series of articles on local anesthetic SEO, with plenty of practical advice .
While SEO can be a complicate subjugate, you don ’ t need to be a master to benefit from it, and even learning equitable the basics will pay bad dividends for your organization .

Conclusion

For many nonprofits, achiever depends largely on their ability to attract attention and build a be on-line. Your non-profit web site will play a cardinal character in that process, serving to both inform your audience and encourage them to take action .
Putting together a non-profit web site that ’ s both fashionable and functional is surprisingly easy. You ’ ll barely want to :

  1. Choose a platform for your non-profit website.
  2. Purchase a hosting plan and domain name.
  3. Pick out a theme to style your site.
  4. Build your site’s basic pages.
  5. Consider whether you need a donation plugin.
  6. Optimize your site for search engines.

Do you have any questions about how to build your non-profit website? Ask away in the comments section below!

Running a #nonprofit? Here’s how to use #WordPress to build a #website without breaking the bank
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