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Why Non-Profits Need Web Portal Development

With the increasing digitization of the world, non-profits, like traditional for-profit companies, are seeking more effective web solutions to boost awareness of their cause and services through a sleek online presence.
 
In this article, we’ll help you discover more about why non-profits absolutely need to get online and bring you some key case studies at how they have successfully created innovative solutions with web development solutions, such as the ones provided by Iflexion.

Why Do Non-Profits Need Web Presence?

What is the first thing we do before buying a new product or trying out a new service? Most certainly, nowadays our first action would be to “google” it to check out its website, view reviews, and get a feel for the company we’re choosing.
 
Non-profits are no exception. While the mission stays not-for-commercial-profit, the solutions needed for engaging with the world somewhat mimic the commercial sphere.
 
Despite this, criticisms remain that it’s not worthwhile for the organization to spend funds on seemingly non-essential activities, i.e., those that don’t directly contribute to the target purpose of the organization, be it a cultural center, charity, or civic organization.
 
However, the real statistics suggest otherwise; in fact, non-profits with effective websites are 34% more likely to get donations, making an online presence a key element of fundraising.
 
Aside from this, there are two additional sizable bonuses to a non-profit web portal––transparency and increased awareness.

  1. Transparency––having a website allows donors and other interested parties to get to know the non-profit and find out more about their mission and why they should donate or volunteer.

Reports published online give non-profits the opportunity to show their audience where their funds are going through a public platform, thus building trust and transparency.
 
Besides, fundraising done online has a digital footprint, meaning it may well be more transparency in it than in cash transactions.

  1. Increased Awareness––acquiring funds isn’t always the primary objective of non-profits (though it helps to sustain their operations). The fact of the matter is that before people can begin to solve a problem, they need to be aware of it, and web portals serve well for helping non-profits let others know about their cause.

It also gives small non-profits equal opportunities with large-scale operations to raise awareness.

How Can Non-profit Utilize Web Technologies?

There are a number of ways for non-profits to achieve the benefits through building a web portal.

Information Sharing

In the non-profit world, information is critical. External information exchange such as through digital advertising allows non-profits to reach a broader community. This may include letting people know about fundraising events, new campaigns, or other news items directly related to the non-profit’s activities.
 
On the other hand, internal information exchange allows setting up an effective collaboration within the non-profit by helping staff to operate. This may include publishing of the mission data, internal reports, or grant applications that form the basis of the non-profit's operations.

Advocacy

Raising awareness is a crucial aspect of any non-profit; how else do you expect people to help if they don’t know a problem exists? Web portals provide an excellent platform for this, where information can be shared and distributed, campaigns launched, and resources recruited.

Fundraising

A crucial element to the success of any non-profit is its ability to fundraise in order to continue on its mission. While crowdfunding platforms are successful, non-profits often seek custom solutions that can help to avoid the fees charged by third-party platforms and provide donor flexibility. Instead of a one-time donation, a sponsor can sign up for a monthly commitment, which is approximately 42% more effective than one-off contributions.

Volunteers

Many non-profits seek the services of volunteers; these dedicated, non-paid workers are the backbone of many organizations. But why should a volunteer choose your non-profit over another?
 
Having a modern interactive web portal that truly connects in terms of tone, motivation, style, and appropriateness can make the difference between finding a suitable volunteer and not. This comes down to trust and transparency; a volunteer is more likely to trust a non-profit with openly available information rather than one without an online presence.
 
Volunteers may also seek to connect to other volunteers, aid in content generation, story sharing, and even reviewing your organization. A web portal can enable all of this and boost your image.

What Solutions Are Available for Non-profit Web Portals?

Now that you know the primary motivations, let’s find out what you can do about it.
 
These are some possible solutions for you.

Information Management

Whether your team is distributed or works in a single office, document management systems included in your web portal can help you get your documents, such as reports, in order.
 
For a non-profit, this means you could collate your grant applications, make a funding calendar, store vital data about your funding activities and where your finances have gone, and that’s only for internal purposes.
 
For visitors to your portal, you can create a database of searchable information––case studies, research papers, photos and more––that help them connect to you and your mission.

Social Engagement

Digital solutions are becoming more personalized, and just because you’re a non-profit doesn’t mean you have to miss out. You can connect with your audience through unique, engaging content––media galleries, activity streams, posts, polls, surveys and more.
 
Show them that communication is a two-way street, and you’ll be more likely to earn their trust and support.

Collaboration

Through a web portal, you can manage your team's internal work with workflows, add collaboration tools, and connect team members better. Whether a teammate is working “in the field” and they need urgent documentation, or you have a pitch to a potential sponsor and you need photos asap, a collaboration-focused web portal would allow your team to work together and get the job done more effectively.

Online Infrastructure

This is the backbone of your organization. Aside from the digital storefront of your non-profit, a web portal can help you manage what’s behind the scenes.
 
Web portal solutions can help your non-profit to manage its processes with ease, transparency, and accountability. Web features can include performance tracking (for example, monitoring your fundraising officer’s productivity), advanced role-based authentication to protect sensitive data, as well as online payment processing and more.

Data Analysis

How do you know if your non-profit is doing the right thing right? That’s correct––through data analysis. Web portal solutions don't only present your cause to the world; they can help you back up what you do with data and facts.
 
And in this case, we’re talking about your website stats. Using web portal development, you’ll be able to track usage of your website by measuring web traffic, see analytics on who your viewers are, identify where they spend the most time and optimize your site to meet their needs.

Three Examples

Below, we will briefly examine three non-profit cases to see where web portal services enhance non-profits’ capacities.

Cultural Organization

Whether you’re a museum, art society, music venue, or another type of purveyor of the arts, the needs of cultural institutions are unique in comparison to other groups.
 
For example, your web development, aside from much-needed donation functionality, may include detailed information about your exhibitions, providing the latest on display, details of the artists and more.
 
You may also look into digital exhibitions of your facilities and create truly interactive experiences for your clients.

Humanitarian Aid Group

Getting your message out there is at the top of your to-do list. Before you can help others, you need to make the world understand there is a problem. Sleek web design can help you do it.
 
With its help, you can create pages complete with stories about your target groups, develop your volunteer initiatives and get the funds you need through integrated donation features.
 
Web portals can help you connect, interact, and touch the hearts and minds of others.

Trade Union

Building a better world together––as a trade union, your organization focuses on the rights of others and their protection.
 
By using web portal development services, you can get as many people on board as possible with integrated sign-up features, add educational materials to inform others of their rights and connect with your current and potential members in a modern, interactive way.

Web Portal Development–Takeaways

Whether you are a for-profit or non-profit, an online presence is essential in getting your message across. You’ll need an efficient platform to be able to connect to your audience with ease and efficiency.
 
For non-profits, web portal development has numerous benefits, such as:

  • Building an audience
  • Developing trust and transparency
  • Promoting advocacy
  • Enabling fundraising features
  • Helping with social engagement
  • Providing information management capabilities

The question should no longer be if you need a website; it’s how you’re going to implement it.

Elena Bonarik

Elena Bonarik

Elena is a Technology Observer at Iflexion with over a decade of experience in the industry. Elena specializes in writing and speaking about technology and business innovation. Frequent areas of coverage include Big Data, Healthcare, eLearning, and emerging issues affecting business.