New Research Shows More Than 50% of Nonprofits Don’t Have a Website

Would this little girl be able to find your nonprofit online?

Would this little girl be able to find your nonprofit online?

When we did the research for The Wordifier–the free online tool that helps you increase your impact by amplifying your words–we stumbled upon a very interesting (and startling) finding: more than 50% of nonprofits don’t have a website.

Actually, to be specific, what we can say is that we are 95% confident that 46.33% to 49.03% of nonprofits DO have websites. Meaning we’re 95% confident that a tidge over 50% do NOT.*

Think about that for a minute: A potential donor hears about your organization. They want to learn more. They go online. They search for your organization. If you’re a nonprofit, there’s only a 50/50 chance they’ll find you because there’s only a 50% chance you’re easily found online. That’s a VBP: a Very Big Problem.

No matter how amazing, compelling, and wonderous your work is, people aren’t going to put in a lot of effort into learning more about you. They’re busy and have bigger fish to fry.

Bottom line: The easier you make it for people to find you, the easier you make it for them to support your work.

Your next step: Search for your organization’s name on-line. Do you show up on the first page of search results? If not, making that happen should be a top priority for your organization.

***Knowing which words to use when talking about your organization is key to your on-line strategy. If you’re unsure about the words you’re using, check out Claxon University’s course, Words on a Mission. Might be the Rolaids for your messaging-related indigestion.***

*Just so we’re clear on what we mean by “no website”: we mean when pulling our sample, we didn’t find an independent url for ~50+% of the nonprofits for which we were searching. Some might have had an online presence, e.g. Facebook pages or a webpage on a connected, but separate organization. For instance, it’s very common for Friends of the Library and PTAs/PTSAs to have a web presence as a page on the related organization’s site, but often not their very own site. Other organizations, businesses, social clubs, or even other nonprofits with a foundation or scholarship might have mentioned the 501c3 arm, or maybe just mention that they have a scholarship, but it is the parent organization that has the website, so that didn’t count.

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  1. Hi Erica,

    These numbers do illustrate a VBB. Something that nonprofits may want to consider in order to help their orgs be visible and found EASILY online is to register the new .NGO or .ONG domain name for their organizations. These are validated domains, meaning that only those nonprofits, charities and NGOs that go through a validation process are able to register them — similar to how .edu, .gov and .mil work in the U.S. .NGO and .ONG serve as visual indicators for donors, letting them know that a particular organization has been vetted, and the donor can feel secure in knowing that they trust where their donation money is going. One other great value proposition is that registration of .NGO and .ONG grants a nonprofit a listing in the OnGood directory — set to be the first GLOBAL listing of nonprofits, charities and NGOs worldwide. Within OnGood there are opportunities for the socially conscious organizations to communicate with one another and with donors, and to fundraise directly on their own profile pages. The goal of these new validated domains is to create a special space online for nonprofits, and OnGood is being developed to help make these organizations self-sustaining for years to come.

    • Erica Mills says:

      Thanks for raising the opportunity of the .NGO and .ONG domain names. I wasn’t aware of the OnGood Directory so thanks also for sharing info about that opportunity!

      Appreciate you sharing your wisdom, Megan!

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