Insivia works with a number of non-profit organizations in building their web presences. Of course, one of the key goals of these sites is to encourage giving to support these great causes. Question is, what are the best ways to encourage people to do just that?

Jakob Nielsen just wrote about some findings in just this area. They’re really straightforward and useful, so I wanted to make sure that the non-profits out there know the key points:

Tell them what you do.
Sounds straightforward, but donors want to know what your organization does and how you would use their donation. Oddly enough, though, less than half of the websites observed in this study answered the question of what the nonprofit does on the homepage.

Keep your design clean.
Confusing information architecture and cluttered page design leads to less donations. If your users can’t figure out what you do (let alone how to donate) they’re going to leave.

So, keep your design clean and make it easy to donate. Make sure your e-commerce flow is secure and clear.

Be straightforward.

Everyone gets confused when they read jargon that’s specific to your organization or industry. Instead of keeping your potential donors in the dark, use familiar terms and meaningful information in your content when you’re planning.

At Insivia, we work hard to make sure that your site looks good, but more importantly we make sure it works well. Keeping an eye on issues like these help with conversion optimization and gets your non-profit a bigger return on your site.