Five Web Trends for Nonprofit Leaders, Part 2: Connected & Accessible
Nonprofit friends, have you given your website an honest evaluation lately? In our previous post, we reviewed the reasons why nonprofits should be putting the same care into their site as they put into their in-real-life audience interactions. In short: A great website helps you do more good.
We talked about how you can retool your site to be more strategic. Want to truly transform your organization? Then design your site to be connected and accessible, as well.
Your website does not exist in a silo! Your site needs to play well with all your systems, not just exist independently online. Connect as many inputs as possible—donor management databases, CRM, forms, HR systems, email platforms, social media and more—to create a thriving ecosystem where different initiatives can learn and share information. Instead of making decisions based on fragmented insights, your organization can work from a holistic picture of your audience’s experience across all channels! That’s transformative. For-profits have been much faster at connection than nonprofits, but nonprofits are catching up. Because connected websites win.
Did you know one in four Americans have some type of disability? Digital accessibility concerns are very real: 4.6% of people in the U.S. have trouble seeing, and 5.9% have trouble hearing. And more than 10% of Americans have cognitive disabilities that make navigating sites difficult, too. Adhering to accessibility standards, like Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) and ADA Compliance, ensures people with visual, auditory, and other challenges can participate in your organization’s online presence.
These accessibility solutions can be simple. For example, one of our clients, Ability KC, includes an accessibility plug-in on their WordPress website. This plug-in, made by UserWay, lets their visitors access all kinds of accessibility features, including adjusting font size, navigating by keyboard, and having pages read aloud. Users get to choose the adjustments they need, and Ability KC gets to live out their inclusive mission online.
Accessibility isn’t just for nonprofits who serve people with disabilities. It’s for all organizations who care about their audiences—and who need to comply with federal accessibility laws (i.e., everybody). We highly recommend setting some time aside to examine your site’s accessibility (ask us about our in-depth web scorecard service). Who are you unintentionally leaving out because your site is inaccessible?
In our final post, we’ll discuss the importance of both content and focus.
Source: “Prevalence of Disabilities and Health Care Access by Disability Status and Type Among Adults-United State, 2016,” www.cdc.gov. Accessed 20 April, 2020.