Forget Apps: Young Donors View Websites on Smartphones
To reach people in their 20s and early 30s, the most important thing nonprofits can do is to make sure their websites are easy to read on a mobile device and not overly cluttered, says a survey of more than 6,500 young people.
About 65 percent of respondents said they liked to learn about a nonprofit through its website, compared with 55 percent who said they turned to social networks, e-mail newsletters (47 percent), print (18 percent), and face-to-face conversations (17 percent).
Other information young people want on a website:
- 43 percent said they look immediately for proof about the ways their donations make a difference.
- 41 percent seek volunteer opportunities.
- 41 percent look for an events calendar.
- 30 percent gravitate to videos and photos.
Going beyond the bare bones of the information presented, how your website looks matters, too, as young people also scrutinize the design.
“Even if you are a small, scrappy nonprofit, your website should look professional,” said one young person quoted anonymously in a report on the survey results. “I judge the character of the organization with its presence on the web.”
Many young people are looking at charity websites on their smartphones, which 77 percent of the survey participants said they own.
“The mobile device is becoming the entry point and the access point for people to find out about nonprofits,” says Derrick Feldmann, chief executive of Achieve.
Not surprisingly, the speed of Internet communications has led young people to expect “immediate and impulsive interactions” with organizations, according to the report.
Young people said they preferred mobile sites that included just the most important information they could act on and that made it easy to click an address or phone number to connect with the nonprofit.
“They said, ‘My way has shifted between sitting down and viewing information to standing,’” Feldmann says.
Mr. Feldmann says nonprofits should expand their thinking about how to use mobile devices beyond seeking text gifts and creating applications.
Focus-group members liked mobile apps but said they didn’t make sense for nonprofits because it’s possible to get information just as easily on a website, and the apps work only on specific devices, such as iPhones or Androids.
At Fundraise.com we feel exactly the same way – it’s why we moved to responsive technology this spring and why we focus so strongly on the tech that powers our platform and the front-end design that makes it look great.
We’re looking to help organizations raise more money by making it as easy as possible for donors to give regardless of where they are or which device they prefer to consume web information. And we’d love to help you – shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call at 857.445.4165.
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