As a nonprofit organization, having an effective digital presence is critical to achieving your mission. A well-designed website allows you to share your story, spread awareness about important causes, and connect with donors and volunteers. However, building a custom nonprofit website requires technical skills and resources that many organizations lack.
Fortunately, tools like Unicorn Platform make the process simple. With an easy to use drag and drop builder, anyone can create a professional nonprofit website without any coding experience. You have access to designer-made templates optimized for nonprofits, allowing you to set up a landing page, blog, and full website in minutes. Focus on what really matters - engaging your community and creating positive change in the world. Unicorn Platform even offers a donation landing page builder to help you raise funds and support your cause.
Why Nonprofits Need a Website
As a nonprofit organization, having an informative and engaging website is crucial to your success. Here are a few reasons why nonprofits need a professional website:
- Reach more donors and volunteers. A website allows you to share your mission, projects, events and stories with people across the world, not just in your local community. This exposure can help generate interest and increase donations and volunteer sign-ups.
- Build trust and credibility. A well-designed website establishes your organization as professional, transparent and trustworthy. Donors will feel more confident contributing to a legitimate cause.
- Improve communication. A website acts as a central hub to share updates, newsletters, annual reports, and calls-to-action with your supporters and the public. This open line of communication fosters meaningful relationships and a dedicated base of advocates.
- Accept online donations. An easy-to-use donation form on your website allows people to contribute to your cause on their schedule. Studies show that nonprofits receive a large portion of donations through their website, so offering this convenient option can significantly impact your funding.
- Reduce costs. While building a website does require an initial investment, it eliminates the need for expensive print materials and mailers in the long run. A website is also easy to update, so you can make changes quickly as needed without high costs.
In summary, a well-designed website is essential for any nonprofit looking to increase visibility, build trust, improve communication, accept donations, and reduce operational costs. By establishing an online presence, you open your doors to a whole new community of supporters and champions for your mission. The rewards of investing in a professional nonprofit website are well worth the effort.
How to Choose a Website Builder for Your Nonprofit
When choosing a website builder for your nonprofit organization, there are several factors to consider:
- Ease of use. As a nonprofit, your time and resources are limited. Look for a website builder that is intuitive and easy to use without requiring advanced technical skills. A drag-and-drop interface, pre-designed templates, and built-in features like online donation forms can help simplify the process.
- Cost. Nonprofit website builders typically offer affordable or even free plans. Compare options to find one that fits your budget. Some offer discounts or donate a portion of fees to charitable causes.
- Features. Determine what capabilities you need, such as an events calendar, blog, photo gallery or online store. Look for a builder with useful features tailored to nonprofits like online donation and fundraising tools, email marketing and analytics.
- Customer support. For many nonprofits, a website is an important way to raise awareness and funds. Choose a website builder with helpful customer support to guide you in creating an effective site. Look for live chat, phone support, video tutorials and a knowledge base.
- Designs. An attractive, professional design can help convey your mission and brand. Look for a builder with modern templates and themes created specifically for nonprofits. Some also allow you to customize fonts, colors and layouts to match your existing brand guidelines.
With many great options available, you can find an easy-to-use nonprofit website builder with the right features and design at an affordable cost. Take your time to evaluate different builders to find one suited to help you achieve your goals and make a meaningful impact. The extra effort will be well worth it.
Landing Page Templates for Nonprofits
Unicorn Platform offers landing page templates specifically designed for nonprofits to showcase their mission and work. These templates make it easy to create a simple yet impactful web presence to spread awareness and gain support.
A donation page template allows nonprofits to accept one-time or recurring contributions from donors. The page includes:
- A large hero image to make an emotional connection with visitors
- A mission statement or call-to-action to inspire donations
- A donation form with options for one-time or monthly giving at various levels
- Social proof such as a donor wall to build trust
About Us Page
An About Us page is essential for establishing credibility and sharing your nonprofit’s story. The template provides:
- A timeline or story section to highlight key milestones and events
- Images of people you serve or programs you offer
- Bios of leadership and staff to put a human face to the organization
- Your mission and vision statements prominently displayed
- A newsletter signup form to stay in touch with supporters
For nonprofits hosting fundraising events, an event page template helps promote the details and allows people to purchase tickets. It includes:
- Eye-catching hero image of a previous event or stock photo
- A short description of the event including date, time, location, ticket prices, etc.
- A countdown timer to create urgency
- A ticket purchase or registration form with options for general admission, VIP, sponsorships, etc.
- Details on parking, attire, entertainment, auction items, or anything event-specific
- Social sharing buttons so people can spread the word
Using these landing page templates as a starting point, nonprofits can quickly launch a professional web presence to share their mission, raise funds, and gain more support from the community. With easy drag and drop customization, organizations have complete control to modify styles, content, images, and more to match their unique branding and needs.
Top Nonprofit Website Designs
For nonprofit websites, a clean layout with minimal distractions is ideal. Focus the design on your mission and content by using a simple, uncluttered interface. Some of the top nonprofit website designs utilize:
- A minimal color palette with a neutral background and accent colors
- Plenty of white space to create an open feel
- Streamlined navigation with dropdown menus to organize content
- High-impact hero images to tell your story and convey your cause
- Prominent calls-to-action to encourage engagement and donations
Compelling imagery is key for nonprofit websites. Photos of people that your organization has helped or your staff in action resonate strongly with visitors. Include:
- High-quality photos that capture emotions and tell stories
- Photo galleries or slideshows on your homepage to highlight your work
- Videos to allow your audience to experience the impact of your efforts
Your website’s content and copy should clearly convey your mission and purpose. Focus on messaging that:
- Explains your objectives, goals and key programs or initiatives in simple terms
- Shares success stories and highlights the impact of your work
- Calls the visitor to spread awareness or become involved through volunteering, activism or financial support
- Is written in an engaging yet professional tone for your target audience
An effective nonprofit website design achieves a balance of evoking emotion while providing pragmatic details about your organization. By honing in on a clean interface, impactful visuals and purposeful messaging, you can craft a website that will resonate with your supporters and better achieve your mission. Continually optimizing and improving your online presence will help expand your reach and positively impact more lives through your important work.
Stories From Nonprofit Website Development Using Unicorn Platform
Easy to Use
The Unicorn Platform makes nonprofit website development simple. With an intuitive drag and drop interface, no coding skills are required to create a professional site. You can easily:
- Add pages, posts, images, videos, forms, and more
- Choose from stylish templates or start from scratch
- Update fonts, colors, and layouts with the click of a button
Optimized for Nonprofits
Unicorn Platform is tailored to the needs of nonprofits and charities. Features include:
- Donation integration with popular payment gateways
- Email newsletter signup forms to build your mailing list
- Events calendar to promote fundraising campaigns and initiatives
- Nonprofit directory listing to increase online visibility
Real Stories of Success
Nonprofits around the world have used Unicorn Platform to launch their website and power their online marketing. For example:
- Charity Water, a non-profit organization bringing clean and safe drinking water to people in developing nations, used Unicorn Platform to build a compelling site to share their mission and collect donations.
- The World Wildlife Fund created an interactive site on Unicorn Platform to educate visitors about endangered species and environmental issues. They've raised over $5 million in online donations since launching their website.
- Doctors Without Borders utilizes their Unicorn Platform website to recruit new volunteers, provide updates from the field, and solicit emergency relief funds. They've found it an invaluable tool for connecting with supporters and furthering their humanitarian work.
In summary, Unicorn Platform is an easy to use website builder with features designed specifically for nonprofits and charities. By optimizing for causes and social good, it has empowered many organizations to take their fundraising and community engagement to the next level through a professional, compelling online presence. With beautiful templates, an intuitive interface, and powerful functionality, Unicorn Platform makes nonprofit website development simple and effective.
Integrations to Help You Achieve Your Mission
To maximize your nonprofit’s impact, integrating with other platforms and software can help streamline operations and better achieve your mission.
Several key integrations to consider for nonprofit website development include:
- Donation tools: Integrating a donation platform like Donorbox, Donately or DonorPerfect allows supporters to easily donate directly on your website. This can help increase fundraising by making the process simple and convenient for donors.
- Email marketing: Using an email service provider such as Mailchimp, Constant Contact or Drip allows you to build email lists, create engaging newsletters and send targeted campaigns to supporters and potential donors. Email marketing is one of the most effective ways for nonprofits to connect with audiences and solicit donations.
- Project management: As a nonprofit, managing different programs, fundraising campaigns, volunteers and other operational tasks can be challenging without the right tools. Consider a project management solution such as Asana, Basecamp or Teamwork to help organize key projects, assign tasks and monitor progress. This can help improve productivity and efficiency.
- CRM software: A customer relationship management or CRM system enables nonprofits to track interactions with supporters, donors and volunteers in one centralized platform. Popular nonprofit CRM options include Salesforce, Blackbaud and Kindful. A CRM solution helps build better relationships with your audiences which can drive higher engagement and donations.
- Accounting: Using accounting software tailored for nonprofits such as Quickbooks, Xero or Aplos allows you to manage finances, track donations, bill for services and run reports to gain key insights into your organization’s financial health. Integrating with an accounting platform provides transparency and ensures your nonprofit remains compliant with regulations.
By connecting various platforms and tools through integrations, your nonprofit can operate more strategically and work towards achieving its most important goals. The right integrations provide a seamless experience for your organization and the audiences you serve.
Everything You Need to Know About Nonprofit Website Design
When developing a nonprofit website, focus on a simple yet compelling design. A clean layout with minimal distractions allows your mission and call-to-action to shine through. Some recommendations for nonprofit website design:
- Choose a simple color palette with 1-3 complementary colors. Blue and green are popular for evoking trust and nature.
- Use high-quality images that emotionally resonate with your cause. But don’t overload the page, as this can slow loading times.
- Ensure your navigation is straightforward and limited to 5-7 categories. This makes it easy for visitors to find what they need.
- Feature a bold headline and paragraph on your homepage highlighting your nonprofit’s mission. Share details on the populations and issues you serve.
The content on your nonprofit's website educates visitors and inspires them to take action. Some tips for useful content:
- Share your mission, vision, values, and impact to build trust in your organization. Discuss the issues you aim to address and who benefits from your services.
- Tell stories of people you have helped. Put a human face on the problems your nonprofit tackles. But obtain permission first before sharing details and images.
- Explain ways for people to get involved through donating, volunteering, advocacy, and events. Provide clear calls-to-action on every page.
- Blog regularly to increase traffic and visibility. Highlight news, insights, profiles of people you serve, and organizational milestones or events.
Your donation page is one of the most important parts of your nonprofit website. Some essentials for an effective donation page:
- Express gratitude for visitors willing to donate. Thank them for their generosity and partnership in your mission.
- Share specifics on how donations will be used. Be transparent about where funds go and their impact. This builds trust.
- Offer options at different donation levels. Some may donate $10 while others $1,000. Provide choices.
- Make donating easy by accepting major credit cards and PayPal. The simpler the process, the more likely people are to complete a donation.
- Follow up with a thank you email containing a receipt for tax purposes. Let donors know the difference their gift will make. This fosters ongoing support.
A well-designed nonprofit website with compelling content and an easy donation process is key to attracting more volunteers, advocates and donors to your cause. Paying attention to these best practices will enhance your online presence and better serve your community.
How Much Does a Nonprofit Website Cost?
Several factors determine how much a nonprofit website may cost. The main considerations include:
- Website builder platform. Using a drag and drop website builder like Unicorn Platform can reduce costs compared to custom development. Plans start at $0/month.
- Premium features. The specific features and functionality required for your nonprofit website impacts the price. For example, online donation forms, membership areas, and e-commerce capabilities may increase the cost.
- Design customization. The level of customization to the template designs and overall esthetics of the site is a cost factor. Basic color changes and image uploads are typically included, while completely custom designs cost more.
- Content creation. If you need help creating content for your nonprofit website like blog posts, resource pages or case studies, that will increase the price. Content writing services are often available as an add-on.
- Maintenance and support. Ongoing website maintenance, updates, backups, security, and customer support all contribute to the total cost. Plans that include these services tend to cost more upfront.
Typical Nonprofit Website Costs
On average, a small nonprofit website with 5-10 pages costs between $500 to $3,000 to develop, and $20 to $200/month for hosting and maintenance. The exact price depends on the pricing factors above. Some typical examples:
- Basic site (5 pages) on Unicorn Platform: $0/month. You build it yourself with free templates.
- Custom design on Unicorn Platform (10 pages) with extra features: $1000 upfront, $50/month.
- Professionally designed site (10 pages) with CMS: $3000 upfront, $100/month.
- Large site (30+ pages) with donations and memberships: $10,000 upfront, $500/month.
For most nonprofits, an affordable yet effective option is using a website builder platform with a custom design. This can provide a professional digital presence with essential features for a few hundred dollars per month or less. Carefully evaluating your needs and priorities can help determine a solution that maximizes your nonprofit's online impact within budget.
FAQs: Best Nonprofit Website Design & Development
What is the best nonprofit website design?
When choosing a website design for your nonprofit organization, opt for a simple yet professional look. Some of the top nonprofit website designs utilize minimalist layouts, neutral color palettes, and an easy to navigate interface. Your website should be an effective tool to convey your mission and work to visitors, so keep that goal in mind with all design choices.
Should I use a website builder or develop a custom site?
For most nonprofits, a website builder like Unicorn Platform is the optimal choice. Website builders offer user-friendly drag and drop interfaces, pre-designed templates, and built-in features like online donations, email signup forms, and blogs. Developing a custom website requires programming skills and is significantly more expensive and time-consuming. Only consider a custom build if you need highly complex features.
How much does a nonprofit website cost?
The cost to build a nonprofit website can range from $0 to $50,000 or more, depending on the platform and features. Using a free website builder, you can create a basic site at no cost. Paid builders and templates typically start around $10 to $30 per month. A custom website build with a developer usually starts around $5,000 to $10,000 minimum. In addition to upfront build fees, factor in ongoing costs for a domain, hosting, software, and maintenance.
How do I optimize my nonprofit website for search engines?
To rank well in search engines like Google, focus on the following best practices:
- Choose a keyword-rich domain name, page titles, and headers
- Write content for both humans and search engines by using keywords in a natural way
- Include keywords in image alt text, page URL, meta description, and content
- Build internal links between relevant pages and content on your site
- Earn high-quality backlinks from other trusted sites
- Ensure fast load times, mobile-friendliness, and secure HTTPS protocol
- Provide an XML sitemap to help search engines index your site
By following these tips, you can improve your search engine optimization (SEO) and make it easier for people to find your nonprofit's website. Continuous optimization and fresh content will keep your site ranking well over time.
With an easy-to-use platform and a focus on nonprofits, Unicorn Platform allows you to create a professional site to support your cause. Their simple yet elegant templates, integrated donation forms, and blog builder empower you to share your mission, stories, and calls-to-action with the world. For nonprofits looking to establish an online presence, Unicorn Platform is an affordable, no-code solution to spread your message and make a bigger impact. Start building your nonprofit's website today and unlock new opportunities to serve your community. The only thing needed is your vision - Unicorn Platform will provide the tools to make it a reality.