3 Can’t-Miss Advantages for Your Non-Profit’s Website
In today’s always-connected world of digital communications, most non-profits don’t think twice about setting up a website—but that doesn’t mean that all of them get equal value out of the sites they set up. Many of them hurry to create static online presences that serve more as marketing brochures than as interactive properties. With the right non-profit association management website software, however, you can do much more than publicize your group’s focus and mission. In fact, the right website features can make many aspects of organization life easier for the leaders of your group as well as for your membership.
It should go without saying that the information on your website should be as secure as it’s offline equivalent, but depending on how you build your site, that may not be the case. If you take a do-it-yourself approach and create the site based on tools you research and combine on your own, you may not achieve the level of site security that you actually intend—or need. What you really want is a professionally designed software package that combines optimal security with the ability to control who can see which aspects of the site you build.
Along with overall security, you need to concern yourself with content security. Obviously, you want some of your information to be public. How else can you publicize your mission, vision, and goals so you can attract new members to your organization? At the same time, some of your information should be limited only to members or even to administrators.
With the right non-profit association management software, you can control exactly what the public can see and what is visible only to members who log into your site first. You can designate entire pages, or even parts of pages, as members-only areas, and you can change these designations if and when your needs change.
Access and communication
Every non-profit association manager or administrator gets tired of fulfilling prospect and member requests for information. How many times can you e-mail the same documents before you wish for a better way to achieve the task of making files accessible? Information access is another area in which the right non-profit association management software can make your life much easier.
From documents that you make available for on-demand download to photo galleries that share images of events and other milestones, your website also can make the documents and details of association membership easier to promote and provide.
Just as it’s important for you to have easy ways of sharing information about your group with members and the public, it’s also essential to incorporate communication channels into your non-profit website. Sure, some groups make do with publicly accessible, third-party social media websites to do the heavy lifting of their internal communications. But the big problem with that approach is that it takes your members off your site for part of their process of interaction with you and with each other.
Instead of shuffling members offsite so they can communicate among themselves and with you, take advantage of non-profit association management software that includes built-in newsfeed and private chat capabilities. These features enable you to post news items, pin essential information to the top of your newsfeed, engage in private communications with other administrators and leadership, and provide the same form of secure private communication for member-to-member engagement.
Easy event management
Whether you’re holding fundraising activities in advance of launching a new phase of operations or your group’s activities include regularly scheduled events such as webinars and even in-person gatherings, you want an easy way to simplify the process of signing people up to attend. Whether or not you charge admissions or even use ticketing for these events, your website should be able to accommodate all aspects of publicity, reservations, and payments.
For that matter, secure online payments are an expected fact of life for any and all websites that collect dues, fees, and other contributions. Just as some groups send their membership to third-party social media sites for internal communications, some groups also send their members to third-party sites to process payments. The biggest problem with that form of digital handoff is that it makes your site look less professional because you don’t have built-in payment processing.
With the right non-profit association management software, however, not only can you conduct payment activities directly on your website, but you’re freed from the security risks of onsite storage of the personally identifiable information involved in the payments themselves, which greatly eases your peace of mind.
How to find the right feature set and functionality for your non-profit association website
Unless you decide to build a website and embark on the project impulsively, you probably start out with research into the software providers whose offerings can power your online presence. During that research phase, be sure to begin with a list of the features you anticipate you’ll need, and look for a website software provider whose offerings match your requirements.
At Membershine, we’re convinced that our non-profit association management software offers you exactly the feature set you need—plus some goodies you might not have expected. But don’t take our word for it. Sign up for our 14-day free trial and see how our capabilities match up with your requirements. You won’t have to settle for less than our full roster of features when you sign up with us, because we base our package pricing entirely on the size of your membership. Scale up as you grow, or even scale down if your goals and footprint change. We’re here to support you with the functionality you need for a website that helps you do your best.