Your nonprofit website is the central hub of your organization’s digital presence. From donating to learning more about your upcoming projects, supporters visit your website for a variety of different purposes. However, if your website doesn’t immediately communicate your nonprofit’s identity and show that it belongs to your organization, you might miss out on key support.
This is where branding your website can help. Your nonprofit’s unique brand helps audiences understand who you are and what your organization stands for. Plus, by infusing branding elements throughout your digital presence, you can increase awareness around your cause and establish credibility as an authoritative organization worthy of donor support.
Use these expert tips to put branding as the focus of your website and build trust with your supporters:
- Align your messaging
- Choose the right fonts
- Establish a compelling color scheme
For many nonprofits, a website redesign might seem daunting. However, with a content management system (CMS) designed specifically for nonprofits, you can easily add in your custom elements and generate the website of your dreams. Morweb’s guide to nonprofit website builders recommends looking for a CMS with a drag-and-drop interface, ready-to-go web templates, and accessibility tools to streamline your web design and ensure your digital presence is engaging and user-friendly.
Armed with an intuitive website builder and strong branding strategy, you’ll be in great shape to showcase your nonprofit online and inspire support. Let’s begin.
Align your messaging
One of the most critical elements of nonprofit branding is how you describe your organization and its mission. After all, when prospective supporters navigate to your website, their first thought will be to find out more about your organization. Verbal branding guidelines can help you shape your messaging across your website and digital presence as a whole.
The OneCause guide to nonprofit marketing plans recommends considering the following elements to inform your verbal branding strategy:
- Mission: Your nonprofit likely carries out a variety of projects to help serve your community. However, boiling this down to a central mission statement that you can share on your website will help you easily articulate what your organization does. Specifically, your mission statement should include the problem you’re working to solve, your vision for the future, and the community you help. Consider creating an “Our Mission” page to clearly articulate this goal for new visitors wanting to learn more about your nonprofit.
- Values: Your values shape your nonprofit’s internal culture and attract like-minded supporters who resonate with your cause. For example, a youth education nonprofit might value innovation, respect, and teamwork. Infuse these values into your messaging, and consider listing them out on your website and explaining how your nonprofit adheres to these principles.
- Challenges and activities: Challenges refer to the problems your nonprofit is working to solve, while activities are the programs, projects, and fundraising campaigns you lead to actively address these issues and create change. Clearly communicating these elements will explain why your nonprofit’s work is necessary and why donors should rally around your cause.
It’s equally important to consider how your nonprofit articulates its core messaging by creating a consistent tone. For example, you might adopt a professional, serious tone to relate to older audiences and establish your credibility. On the other hand, a friendly, casual tone could work in your favor if you want to seem approachable to younger supporters. Consider what makes the most sense for your nonprofit and use this messaging and tone across your website.
Choose the right fonts
Font can have a powerful effect on the visual aesthetic of your website and how readily users can engage with your content. While there are a variety of font options available, take your time choosing the right fonts that align with your brand personality and make your web content user-friendly. Many nonprofits opt to use a sans-serif font, such as Arial and Helvetica, because of this font group’s straightforward design and legibility.
As you begin your font research, remember to stick to a maximum of 2-3 different fonts to establish consistency in the web viewing experience. Using the same header and body fonts will create a predictable content experience, increasing the likelihood of web visitors staying on your site longer.
You can also leverage your website builder to add an accessibility widget so users can change your font (and font size) as needed to meet their preferences. This way, all of your website visitors can create a satisfactory viewing experience for themselves.
Establish a compelling color scheme
Color psychology can influence how supporters perceive and relate to your nonprofit. While it’s important to pick colors that go well together for your nonprofit web design, you’ll also need to consider how certain colors evoke different emotions. Let’s take a look at some popular color choices and their associations:
- Red: Red is often correlated with passion, excitement, and immediacy. Many health organizations opt to use red in their nonprofit branding to represent the urgency of their missions.
- Green: If you’re an environmental organization, adding green to your color scheme is a great choice because of its ties to the natural world. Green is also associated with growth and stability.
- Blue: Blue helps to communicate trust, authority, and openness. Keep in mind that different shades of blue have different connotations. For example, dark blue is often associated with formality, while light blue creates a more friendly, youthful feeling.
- Orange: Orange is correlated with playfulness, lightheartedness, and friendliness. Using orange can be a great choice to appeal to younger audiences and create a more welcoming atmosphere.
Keep in mind that some colors are also associated with distinct causes. For example, pink is often tied to breast cancer awareness. Using a color that naturally aligns with your cause can boost your visibility and effectively introduce your nonprofit to new audiences.
Once you’ve picked the right colors to represent your cause, leverage your website builder to easily add in these custom elements and infuse them throughout your design. The right CMS will empower you to adjust any one of its nonprofit website templates to meet your nonprofit’s needs in just moments.
A branded website can help your nonprofit strengthen its digital presence, build lifelong supporter relationships, and encourage more donations. As you optimize your website design to better reflect your brand, keep your audience in mind and ensure each element of your website contributes to a positive user experience. Choose a website builder that will assist you in creating engaging and accessible content that will inspire supporters to deepen their involvement.