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Great nonprofit websites & how to avoid website design pitfalls

WebsitesMultimedia & Design

Last week I ran a webinar called Preparing for a Website Redesign, where I talked about the different phases of the website design process and walked through what to keep in mind for each one. In particular I focused on areas such as how to know what you want, how to pick a good conusultant and which CMS is right for you. Here is the webinar recording:

There were a few questions that I didn't get to answer at the end of the webinar, so I've shared my thoughts here:

What are some examples of good nonprofit websites?
In the webinar I shared WoodGreen and SafePlace which are both good examples.

A helpful resource is Network for Good's "911 Speed Consulting" - they have sites that rock (which is how I found SafePlace) and you can see their quick critiques on other sites

For further examples see 25 good nonprofit sites, Webby award winners, 11 nonprofit websites designed for the social web and 5 good uses of social media icons on nonprofit home pages. If you're looking specifically for examples of mobile websites, see 22 nonprofit mobile websites.

Remember that finding websites you love is a great way to get ideas for your own site.

How do you make your website accessible?
This is somewhat up to the techie who builds your website, somewhat up to your designer and somewhat up to you when you create content.

Your techie can help by making sure the HTML code is clean and by doing various other tests. Here are 10 simple web accessibility tips.

Your designer can help by choosing colours that have enough contrast to be clearly distinguished by colour blind users (which is actually quite a lot of people). This post has links to a few tools that allow you to check your contrast.

You can also help when you add content. For example, when I add an image in Drupal (the CMS that we use for the TechSoup Canada site) there is a field for "image URL" and also one for "ALT Text". The ALT text is what a screen reader will read to someone who is blind and can't see the image, so it should describe the image. When you are adding images to your website, you can do your part by taking the extra 5 seconds to put a description in the ALT text. Ask your developer about other things you can do.

Of course, this only scratches the surface of what's possible. There are lots of other resources out there to take a look at, for example 5 ways to ensure that your site is accessible to the visually impaired

Which is better - Drupal, WordPress or Joomla?
There are lots of comparisons out there (including what I said in the webinar today); one I like in particular is

Do you have other questions about redesigining your website? Share them in the comments.

The webinar slides are also available:




Thanks for the information

Thanks for the information