Digital technology is increasingly playing a key role in engaging donors, and in 2015, around 7.1% of overall fundraising revenue came from online giving—with a 9.2% growth over 2014. And in the arts and culture nonprofit space, digital fundraising saw a 8.3% increase year over year.

With digital fundraising trends on the rise each year, your online presence is more important than ever.

There are thousands of arts and culture nonprofits that engage communities throughout the world, and each day, donors are searching online for organizations and causes such as these to support. It’s vital to create an engaging, trustworthy online presence to align with these donors.

But how do they find you to begin with?

It all starts with search—or search engine optimization (SEO). Optimizing your website’s SEO can boost your visibility in search and connect you with your target audience.

However, you don’t have to be a search expert to make sure your website is found by donors. Interactive Fundraising Expert Mike Snusz has 4 actionable steps you can take right now to help optimize your website for SEO:

Step 1: Front-Load Your Browser Title

  • The first word of a browser title is critical. Front-load your browser titles with the page name, rather than your organization’s name.
  • Character count is 70 max
  • Avoid duplicate browser titles.
  • The browser title appears in search engines.

Step 2: Add a Meta Description to All Pages

  • A meta description, while not important to search engine rankings, is extremely important in gaining user click-throughs from search results.
  • It appears often as the page description in search results, and this is the default text that is shown when someones shares a link to the web page on social media.
  • Create a compelling description that a searcher will want to click.
  • Character count is 150.

Step 3: Increase Online Reviews

  • Quantity and quality of reviews are important factors in improving local search rankings.
  • It also helps improve your reputation and increase search click-throughs.
  • Google+ reviews are most important, but you should still try to increase reviews from other sites too, such as Yelp and TripAdvisor.

Step 4: Make Citations Consistent

  • Consistent citations are one of the top ways to improve local search rankings
  • What’s a citation? Any web page that lists your name, address, and phone number.
  • The name, address, and phone number need to match your Google+ page

Congratulations—you’ve taken the first step toward optimizing your online presence! As you can see, it’s a vital step in ensuring your organization’s success as digital giving trends continue to rise.


Cassie Bannister is the Digital Marketing Manager at Blackbaud. She lives in Austin, Texas with her daughter, and is a veteran of the video game and biotech industries. She’s committed to serving foster care, women’s rights, and public media organizations. She is happiest running half marathons, exploring the Texas hill country, photographing her journey, and learning how to be an “outdoors person.”

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