I ask everyone we make a website for a variation on the following question; what do you want your website to accomplish? It probably shouldn't surprise me, but it does, but every time I ask that question it becomes apparent that though most people are clear what they want their website to do, they haven't really thought about what the site should accomplish. Often this means that what is desired is unlikely to achieve the desired outcome.
As a rule, a charity website needs to achieve two things: get people to support your cause (with their time, money or resources) and help people who use your charity (how to use your services, information that helps - for example a medical charity answering common questions online, providing awareness, etc.). Some charities will focus on one of these aims over the other, but in general these are the two aims.
For example of the websites we've built Azalea focuses most on information about the charity in order to encourage the visitor to get involved or to donate to the cause, whereas Harpenden Helping Hand splits evenly between information on how to volunteer and how to get help. The differences in these two charities' approaches is due to the different aims of the charities themselves and how they relate to those they help.
Before you start on a website, you need to have a proper think about what your website needs to achieve. Next week I'll be writing a post on how a charity website should achieve those aims.
If you're looking to get a website, start a conversation with us on what your aims should be at firstname.lastname@example.org
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