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One of the things nonprofit organizations have difficulty with is finding time for internet marketing. Is it even worth it? I think so. Especially if you focus on local search engine optimization for nonprofit organizations.
Before I get into local SEO, I want to point out that there are a few phases in the conversion process of internet marketing. In my experience, it helps a great deal to have someone give me the breakdown of what’s coming.
This is the methodology:

Visitors > Subscribers > One Time Customer > Lifetime Customer > Evangelist

  • Visitor: These are the people who first land on your website. Out of the five groups of people I list above, the “Visitors” group is always the largest. This article I am writing for you about local search engine optimization for nonprofit organizations contains examples of how you can use local search for concrete methods to getting people to your website. The purpose of this phase is to get as many eyeballs on your content as possible.
  • Subscriber: The subscriber was previously a website visitor, but your content was so engaging that the visitor decided to drop in their email address for more information or perhaps exchanged business cards with you at an event. Once they have expressed interested in staying up-to-date with the news and happenings of the program that means you are doing something good – make sure you continue with consistence. The purpose is to convert as many website visitors into email / text subscribers of the movement.
  • One Time Donor: The one time customer was previously a subscriber, and before that a visitor. Congratulations on bringing them all this way down the funnel. You were so engaged with the the subscriber that she told you more personal things about what she was having trouble with in her life and that empowered you to create personalized product experiences for individual members. How can you make this person a customer for life?
  • Lifetime Donor: This is definitely a good goal to have. Whether you spend a lot of energy on it or not is your decision. However, if there is a way for you to setup automated giving from demographics even at the smallest amount of revenue would be revolutionary. Passive income streams for nonprofits are essential if we want to hold our ground on all the progress made thus far.
  • Evangelist: This is the person who absolutely loves your products and services and everything about you and your brand. This person typically has a wide reach and effortless ability to infect others with her contagious ideas about how amazing your product will be once all of her friends buys their own. Guy Kawasaki was the Evangelist for Apple many years ago. Today, he is the evangelist for the design and photo app Canva

Now that we understand the funnel – you do understand, right? You need to fill your funnel to the top with as many visitors as possible. You also want to make sure you intentionally prepare conversion tracks for various calls-to-action on your site. When a visitor lands on your website, are they given the ability to convert into the next phase of the funnel? How can you make the process seamless so that a customer or donor can find your content, navigate to the exact items she was looking for and connect immediately with your services?

Local Search Engine Optimization for Nonprofit Organizations

It is unfortunate that the people who are trying to make an impact on the world are the same people who don’t have access to enough resources. Meanwhile, the businesses that cause the problems the nonprofits are working to solve have unlimited access to resources. That does not seem logical.
It seems as though there is a conflict, or, perhaps it is friction. It gives me a feeling in my gut that lets me know it’s obviously not fair, but at the same time, what are we supposed to do about it?
In this post, I am going to do something about it. Just like each of us can do something today, and right now, to remove the friction between nonprofits who are working to create change and the ability to successfully do so. To alleviate some of the stress from all nonprofits out there I am going to outline world-class search engine optimization practices (SEO) that you can implement today in your office without having to hire an outside consultant.
Register your nonprofit organization with business listings on the following directories:

  1. Google My Business is an absolute must
  2. Bing Business
  3. Yahoo Business
  5. FourSquare
  6. Yelp!
  7. CitySearch
  8. Claim a free business listing on SuperPages
  9. MerchantCircle

They may seem like “business” directories because they are business directories. Last time I checked, nonprofit organizations are a form of business. Therefore, you belong in those directories as well. That doesn’t mean someone will go to those directories to find you, but the people who do find you through these new channels may never would have found you otherwise. Always increase the opportunity to be found. Get as many eyeballs on your content as possible. Eyeballs convert into subscribers. Subscribers into customers. Customers into evangelists.