When is it Time to Call in a professional, Nonprofit Web Designer? Did you know that it takes less than one tenth of a second for a person to form an opinion about your organization from the appearance of your website? After that initial impression is made, a user will need to find what they are looking for in 8 seconds or less or they will likely click away.
Today I worked on a site for a non-profit that was designed by someone who could technically operate WordPress, but they did not have training or experience in helping a user become a subscriber or donor on the page. In a word, the website was a mess. Donors came to the site and just bounced off of it.
Many nonprofits think that building their own website is a good and cost-effective way to go. What they don’t realize is that it costs them significantly if a potential donor visits the page and chooses to go away without engaging with the content.
Unless you have an experienced web designer on your staff, you might consider outsourcing your site to someone who makes websites for a living. Your website is one of your most important fundraising assets and dedicating some time, money, and expertise to your site can have a huge impact on your success.
Reasons Why you Should Consider Hiring a Professional Nonprofit Web Designer – Even if it is Expensive
There are several reasons why a nonprofit organization should consider hiring a professional web designer to build their website instead of building it themselves. Here are a few that come to mind:
- Professional expertise and experience: Web designers have the necessary skills and experience to create a visually appealing and functional website that will appeal to donors. They are familiar with industry best practices, design trends, and user experience principles, which enables them to create a website that effectively communicates the organization’s mission and vision and the connect that vision to a website visitor.
- Time and resource efficiency: Building a website from scratch can be a time-consuming process, particularly for organizations with limited resources and technical expertise. If it takes you 100 hours to build a sub-par site, it that really a good use of your time? Wouldn’t it be better to pay a design a few thousand just to build it correctly in the first place? By hiring a web designer, nonprofits can save time and allocate their resources more efficiently. In many instances, it is simply better stewardship to spend the money on a designer. Web designers have the knowledge and tools to streamline the development process. This results in a faster turnaround time and a site that your donors will find more appealing.
- Customization and branding: Web designers can tailor the website to the nonprofit’s specific needs, ensuring that it reflects the organization’s unique identity. They are able to create custom designs, and incorporate branding elements in order to tell the organizations story in a more effective way.
- Technical and maintenance support: Thousands of things can go wrong in the process of building a site and many of them re crippling. In addition, there are hundred of options when it comes to hosting, templates and domains. Choosing the wrong one can cost you serious time and money. Web designers can assist with technical aspects, such as domain registration, hosting setup, and website maintenance. They can provide ongoing support to address any technical issues, ensure website security and updates, and optimize the site for search engines.
- Enhanced functionality and user experience: Web designers can implement features and functionalities that enhance the overall user experience for your prospective donors, such as intuitive navigation, responsive design for mobile devices, and integration with social media or donation platforms. This can result in improved engagement, increased donations, and better communication with stakeholders.
The site we worked on today was built without a way to make a donation and without a clear explanation of what the organization does. They were lacking the ability to communicate their vision and to connect with people.
Hiring a web designer for a nonprofit organization’s website can provide professional expertise, save time and resources, customize the website to fit the organization, provide technical support, and enhance functionality and user experience.