Investing time and money into a website is a simple decision for a lot of organizations around the world, including NGOs
Even local NGOs in low-income countries can benefit from having a website. It helps them look more professional to donors and partners, gives them a useful communication channel
The first question to ask yourself is why do you need a website for your organization? You know, beyond that it is being recommended in this article. What are the objectives/goals of the website… what is it meant to achieve? Examples here can range from a very simple website with an about page and contact details, all the way up to a website with program updates, stakeholder communications and the ability to accept donations. The decision on objectives will also need to take into account how much money and time you want to spend.
So here are a few reasons why you should consider a website for your NGO
Communication is the key to which the lock of every organization turns. Transparent and effective communication is the only way to go when they need networking arises. Proper communication is very easily facilitated by a website through a well- placed contact or email address, which is accessible 24×7 for both parties thus making it faster, efficient and a direct way to communicate and network. Websites have become an imperative tool for communication. A website has direct access to stories from the ground and the website can thus directly communicate such concerns to supporters and ambassadors who are otherwise not able to penetrate such areas. This allows an NGO to keep pace with time, be more connected in society while simultaneously being forthcoming and communicative about their work. Therefore, if you run an NGO, owning a website would be the first step to attract the attention of people who sympathize with the cause. How else would they find you from any corner of the country if you don’t have a digital presence?
A website helps current and future donors, and partners verify the existence of your organization and make you look more ‘real’. A website contributes to making your organization look more professional when applying for donations, grants, tenders, etc., and gives donors and partners a place where they can go to find more information about your organization.
At the very least, a website can provide others with up-to-date contact details and an address for your organization (both of which can be hard to come by). More robust websites will feature information about the organization, an overview of the projects/programs they run, updates, reports, staff bios, and may even be able to gather donations.
Ideally, the website should be ‘good enough’ designed (i.e. it shouldn’t look like it is 15 years old) and the content should be well written in whatever language you have chosen. Design is a tricky one because it is very subjective, changing based on individual preferences.
3. ADDITIONAL COMMUNICATION CHANNELS:
A website is an additional communication channel for your organization, which can be quite useful in certain situations. The most obvious one is when your project/program audience (e.g. program participants or beneficiaries) can be engaged through the Internet and are an audience for your website. An example might be an advocacy organization whose audience is online and directed to the website.
4. GROWING INTERNET USAGE
While Internet usage in low-income countries is currently quite low (often less than 30%), it is important to note that that usage is increasing. so while the usage is increasing, your organization should not be left out of the internet
5. EDUCATION AND AWARENESS OF YOUR WORK
The appeal of the internet is boundless, and it is successful websites that build this! Having a website means potential thousands of people seeing it and thus gives one adequate control and management to be able to influence people’s decisions and educate them. Knowledge is the stepping stone to bringing change, and your website will provide that to the masses.
6. 24X7 PRESENCE
A website runs 24×7 without necessary manual supervision thus always maintaining a presence. Not only does this help increase the extremely important number of visitors, but it simultaneously increases the accessibility and approachability for the organization by standing in as its front. For a generation as internet savvy as ours, it is not unknown, how a few hits can significantly change awareness on the World Wide Web. Volunteers and donors will find you even while you’re asleep! How much better can this get?