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A nonprofit website should reflect the big picture of your organization. For many nonprofits, though, their site doesn’t even reflect their mission statement.
This is because people tend to operate in silos. You’ll have the executive director harboring the mission statement, holding it close to make sure the right voice and vision are expressed. Then you have an event coordinator working in her own space, and a marketing director doing his thing, and then there’s the person working on the website itself—and none of these things integrate. Everyone is working in a separate universe, so nothing becomes unified.
In many organizations, we don’t do a great job of creating a common and cohesive theme—this is called integrated marketing. Your nonprofit website is a crucial component of your marketing plan, and needs to be built and designed so that it syncs with everything else in your marketing arsenal.
At Firespring, we help thousands of companies and nonprofits all over the world. We have more than 3,000 clients in 12 countries. Our focus is primarily on nonprofits. We look under the hood of many organizations and see how people interact with them online through their nonprofit website statistics and analytics report.
I know that fewer than 1.5 out of every 100 website visitors stay on a nonprofit’s mission statement page long enough to read it. This is not how people really learn about your organization. They figure you out simply by the content, the images, the text and the headlines on your site, particularly on your homepage.
The bottom line is, your whole nonprofit website should live, eat and breathe your mission. It should tell your organization’s story. Otherwise it’s just another website, sitting out there on the internet, accomplishing nothing for you. If that’s the case, why bother?