5 Tips for Non-Profits to Master SEO

nonprofit seo

There are many reasons why non-profits have a great opportunity in digital marketing channels. The competition is low, their brands are authoritative and private companies love to be linked to them to improve their PR and brand recognition.

One of the online channels with great opportunities for non-profits is Search Engine Optimisation. Follow these 5 tips and make it work for you.

1. Understand your potential

How powerful is your non-profit’s website? Google uses a very complex algorithm to assign a value to every website that it will later use to decide which one is shown in rankings when someone uses the search engine.

In order to understand this value we can use 2 metrics from different trusted SEO tools, Domain Authority (DA) from Moz and Trust Flow (TF) from MajesticSEO. Even if you don’t have a paid for account, you’ll be able to see this data.

I’ve used 2 non-profits as examples to see how many points they are given:

(Please note that Orbis is a big and well-established international non-profit and Help them Hope a small national non-profit operating in Peru.)

As you can see, there are big differences in the above values, but these numbers are not helpful unless you have some context. Find your competitor’s score and see how your site fares against them.

2. Understand what works for you

I am sure if you are a UK non-profit like Orbis you would love to rank for terms such as “Donate to Charity”. And as I’m sure you know, this can prove difficult. The first non-profit that shows for this term is Oxfam. They score a DA=87 and a TF=66. However, you really don’t need to go after these big competitive terms; there are thousands of long tail keywords that would be more strategic. The question is: how do we find them?

If you log into your Webmaster Tools (now called Google Search Console), you will be able to find many keywords that your site is ranking for. Go to Search Traffic/Search Queries and download these keywords in a spreadsheet.

webmaster tools

This is the data for the last month for my digital marketing blog. I sorted the data by impressions to see where the opportunities are.

You can now easily check your current rankings for the top 10 keywords and see how far you are from 1st position. In my case, I have a great opportunity in RLSA as there is lot of interest based on the number of impression and I’m just 2 positions off 1st page.

If you are a registered non-profit in the UK, you are eligible for Google Grants, free AdWords advertising in Google! You can use this grant as a testing tool to see how the chosen keywords convert for you. If you see these are working for you, you´re in a stronger position to start your SEO campaign.

Now that we have the data and we know what to focus on, let’s see how we can put this into practice.

3. Make it accessible

We first need to check your On Site ranking factors to make sure Google can access your site easily and understands what you offer to potential visitors. Here is a checklist:

  1. Title tags: Do you use unique title tags in each page? Are these under 60 characters long? Do you use keywords when appropriate?
  2. Meta descriptions: Do you use engaging meta descriptions to improve your Click Through Rates? Make sure you add ‘call to actions’ to stimulate clicks.
  3. Page speed: How quick is your site to load? This is a very important SEO ranking factor
  4. Internal linking: Do you use internal links to refer users from one page to another? Internal linking is one of the best tools at your disposal to help Google understand what your site is about.

A great tool which will help you with this checklist is Woorank. Woorank analyses your on-page SEO accessibility and lets you know what you should focus on.

4. Build Links

This is where non-profits have their best chance to improve their SEO value.

Donors: Have a look at your list of current corporate donors. Do you have a link from their sites to yours? Go and ask them if they can put up an article on their blog/news section about how cool they are by funding one your latest projects. Offer them help to write up the article and they should be happy to oblige.

Badges: Most companies that donates to charity likes to be linked to the organisation they’re supporting. Why don’t you create an official badge that every donor can proudly show on their homepage? Make sure this badge contains a link back to your site.

Events: Charities tend to organise events in collaborations with other companies/organisations. Make sure you do a write up article talking about how great these companies are and let them know once this is published in your blog. They’re likely to take the bait and link back to your article to show their customers the great endorsement you’ve written about them.

5. Monitor your results

SEO is an art; you can’t scientifically prove what will work and what won’t. Therefore most of your successes will come from testing! And in order to test, you need to monitor the impact from your activities.

One tool I really like for this purpose is Serplab. Serplab is an amazing free tool that will allow you to monitor your rankings for all your chosen keywords on a daily basis. You can even set an automatic email with a daily report so you don’t even need to log into the tool.

Implement, monitor, learn and repeat!


Alvaro Bellido is London-based digital marketer passionate about non-profits, advertising and entrepreneurship. Alvaro collaborates with a number of non-profits as a digital consultant as well as London-based start-ups. You may find him on Google+, Twitter and his personal website.

Infographic: Ecommerce Checklist

Ecommerce is heading towards becoming a trillion-dollar industry and shows no signs of slowing down. Shopping online should be an easy experience for customers and if not they are likely to simply abandon the cart before even filling out their details. Getting the conversions can be a tricky business so we at IDF Marketing have created the “Ecommerce Checklist 2015” to help our clients and followers. This infographic explains quite a bit of important factors that you mightn’t think of. From simple tips on how you should tweak your page layout to tips on what your page should feature such as a Live Chat option to help questioning customers. Other essentials such as making the website mobile responsive and investing in good quality hosting to speed up your ecommerce website are also discussed in greater detail. We hope you find our infographic useful!

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Infographic: In-Store Retail Apps Are Heating Up

The last decade has seen a huge change in the landscape of retail worldwide. E-commerce websites have become pretty much ubiquitous and many consumers source most of what they need online. This shift in consumer behavior has been heavily influenced by the improvement in technology in terms of computers but most especially on phones. Previously, cell phones were used predominantly for making and receiving calls or text messages. Today, this couldn’t be more different.

Cell phones of today are referred to as smartphones and rightly so as there is little that they don’t do or influence in day to day life. Smartphones have radically come down in price also and so they are accessible to a larger portion of people.

The proliferation then of phone and tablet apps could be seen as another problem for offline or bricks and mortar retailers but in actual fact this need not be the case. With greater access to consumers, offline retailers need to look at this as an opportunity for them to reach out to consumers like never before. Research shows that consumers that use and engage on apps are more likely to spend higher amounts of money so it is definitely something that should not be ignored. Retailers need to focus on how phone and tablet apps can make the retail experience a better one when the customers are actually in the store in order to capitalize on the changing times.

This infographic from Storetraffic Retail Solutions aims to show how the app revolution is not confined to online retail, meaning that it is something that offline retail store owners should not ignore. Check it out to learn more!

infographic in store retail

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Maybe You’re Not a Guru

not a guru

“An uncomfortable truth; with a massive take away.

Not everyone is a brand.

Meaning some are just not energetic enough, well spoken or appropriate to become a ‘brand’.

A lot of people following this brand advice, creating blog posts and videos that are difficult to read or watch. It is obvious they are trying to be something they are not.

You don’t need to be a brand to succeed online; for example you could be the PPV traffic expert; simply building an email list and doing email marketing driving leads to offers; that can work.” ~Terry Lamb


I’ve wondered about this.

Over the years, I have had teammates in the MLM and direct sales industries who wouldn’t do so hot at building a brand of themselves as a majority of the Internet marketing gurus suggest. I like the alternative offered here by Terry. This route helps your teammates get out of their own way and improves their likelihood of success–provided they have the patience, work ethic and resources to invest.

John Maxwell teaches the Law of Respect. In it, he illustrates how people naturally follow leaders stronger than themselves. In his example, if you are an 8 in leadership, you’re not likely to follow a 6; you would rather follow a 9 or a 10.

Folks won’t follow you onto a team or mailing list if they detect you’re as lost as they are.

We all carry a personal brand. However, most of our personal brands don’t carry the posture and the value (yet) to pull people to us. This may take years of self-development to kick in.

The shorter, more attainable path then for many will be to approach their marketing as a behind-the-scenes orchestrator; not a lead-the-charge expert.

In support of your efforts,
Matt

P.S. – Interested in learning how to market your business online? Start here.

Infographic: The Power of Color in Branding

Many of us like to believe that we are unaffected by branding and advertising. However, with the vast quantity of messages we receive through various media formats throughout the day, it is almost impossible to completely avoid coming into contact with one brand or another. Ensuring that their message is effectively communicated to a certain demographic or target market is one of the primary goals of a brand, and in such a competitive environment every effort is made to utilize any factor that may result in an advantage being gained.

This infographic by Brushstrokes is aimed at increasing awareness of the importance of color in branding, and how our decisions can be influenced by colour. For example, studies have indicated that purple is a colour that is generally more attractive to females. Therefore a masculine brand would rarely use this. We hope to inform brand owners, and potential brand owners, on how to match brand personality with color, as well as educating readers about why certain brands use certain colors.

What are logos are you drawn to? Do you have any tendencies to favor one color over another? Share your experience in the comments below!

infographic color in branding

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Blog to Grow Your Email List

email marketing

Okay. One of the realizations that has just slapped me in the forehead has been by Internet marketer, Terry Lamb.

Guys, I’ve been marketing online, I’ve been marketing in the online and offline worlds for over 20 years, right? So I should know this stuff. I should know this one little jewel, and I needed to be reminded of it because I had strayed from the path.

The path that I strayed from, the learning that was brought to me by Terry, was this: He said in one of his recent webinars that his number one purpose for his website is to entice people to sign up onto his mailing list.

That’s his one, singular purpose.

At that point, then he can have a conversation with them. Once he’s gotten somebody added to his list, he can teach them. He can bring value to them. He can offer them recommendations—product recommendations, solution recommendations—that kind of thing. But until then, they’re not a captive audience. They’re visitors. They hop onto the site and if they leave the site without ever signing up to your list, you may never see them again.

You know, for the last year or so I had kind of fallen away from that. I’ve been building an email list for a while, but I realized I had been falling away from it. I have been pushing people more towards the Facebook channel, or more towards the Twitter.

Really, the destination is the mailing list.

If we have conversations over at Facebook, if we have conversations over at Twitter, or Google+, or wherever, that’s all great. But ultimately, you want the ability to reach into people’s inboxes to say “Hi. How you doing today? What is it that I can help you with? This is what I found to be helpful on my mission (and on our combined mission) to get from point A to point B.”

That little bit of awareness I needed. That’s my lesson for today. What can you guys do to help make your website more of a destination, first? So are you building value into your website?

Then, secondly, how do you keep the conversation going? How do you keep yourself on their forefront?

There’s your challenge for today. All right guys. This is Matt Schoenherr, MarketingIdeas101.com. In support of your efforts.

P.S. – Interested in how to grow a captive audience online? Get the Internet marketing training I use!