How do you choose software for your nonprofit? With so many different types of software on the market, it’s difficult to even know what’s available, let alone what’s best for your organization’s particular needs. That’s why we created the Idealware Field Guide to Software for Nonprofits, a handy reference that covers all the different types of software that might be useful to you—and we just updated it for 2013.
Everybody is talking about mobile these days, and increasingly, people are spending much of their online time accessing the internet through mobile devices. What do small nonprofits need to know about mobile to make sure they're not missing out? To find out, we looked at what big global development organizations were doing successfully with mobile and translated that knowledge to a scale that small- to medium-sized organizations could replicate.
What if a percentage of the $150 billion spent annually in online shopping could be donated to nonprofits working to make the world a better place?That’s exactly the promise a growing number of web-based businesses are making—purchase something from an online retailer you find through their site, and they’ll send a percentage to the organization of your choice. Neither users nor their designated charities pay anything—the donations come from participating merchants, who pay the sites a commission for each online purchase referred through them.
Advocacy organizations often encourage their grassroots supporters to influence politicians and corporations using different methods, from promoting a cause or opposing legislation to challenging ad campaigns or policies. A large display of public opinion can have a powerful message, and advocacy groups often help to focus and channel this support to make the most impact.
UPDATED in October 2011! With more than 750 million people signed up for Facebook alone, there’s little doubt that social media can be a powerful part of most organizations’ communications mix. But what can it be used for—outreach and engagement? Event management? Advocacy? How about fundraising? For many nonprofits, it’s far more obvious that such tools can be useful than how to use them.
Petitions and pledges provide ways to effect change by letting people add their names to a particular cause to show the amount of support for it. They can also help your organization build a list of people interested in its causes. So how do you implement these measures?
Online surveys can be a huge help in understanding what your constituents think and how successful your programs are, without breaking your budget. Last year we spoke to five nonprofit staff members to understand how existing online survey tools compare—this is an update of that article with current information about the tools’ features and pricing.
Regardless of your organization’s demographics, chances are good that a majority of your constituents use mobile phones. How can you reach out to them on their cell? We walk through the possibilities: texting, two-way communication, giving, pledging, websites, apps, and more.
Are your online communications working? How can you tell? In this article, we talk through four types of measures-- Views, Followers, Engagement, and Conversion-- that help you track your efforts to see if they're worthwhile.
Chances are, your organization has a website. Perhaps you also send out broadcast emails, or maintain a blog, Twitter or Facebook account. Is the effort you’re putting into online communications working? How can you tell?
One of our most popular articles, fully updated March 2010. Email newsletters, action alerts, or fundraising emails can be a very cost effective way to communicate with your supporters, but it can be complex to send and track thousands of emails. We talked to eleven nonprofit technology experts to find out what eNewsletter tools have worked well for them.