By Ira Horowitz, Cornershop Creative
(This post is the first in our Mobilegeddon-related series. Stay tuned because in the coming weeks we'll share more tips and lessons to help get your nonprofit fully prepared for Mobilegeddon.)
Mobilegeddon is here. Is your nonprofit ready? Well, if you’re pulling one of these faces, then let’s just say that you’re in the right spot:
As of Tuesday, the all-powerful Google changed its search algorithm (again!). Websites that are mobile-friendly will move to the top of its search results pages. While websites that are challenged in this area (you know who you are) will be moved further down the list into search obscurity.
It is estimated that 16.6% of donors give from an email on a mobile device. And according to Online Fundraising Scorecard, 84% of nonprofits have donation pages that are NOT optimized for mobile. Bottom line: if you’ve been putting off optimizing your website or emails for mobile, then there’s no denying that Mobilegeddon is the perfect reason to get buy-in and get cracking!
But we get it - overhauling your website to be mobile optimized is extremely daunting! So before you learn to fly, how about we take some baby steps. Email is a great way to dip your toes into mobile waters.
Let’s start with email…
There are a lot of ways to view email these days. There are more than 10 major web-based email clients viewable in four major browsers, five popular versions of Outlook, three popular versions of Apple Mail, and dozens of mobile devices with their own email client and third-party apps.
It’s overwhelming to think about -- let alone manage -- how your emails are rendering in all these email clients, especially considering that all email clients have different ways to display the same code. Styles that are acceptable in one, will be completely ignored in another. And I would see nonprofits make the same 5 mistakes in responsive email design over and over again. There had to be an easier way!
Let me introduce you to the Email Template Builder. This handy build-your-own tool allows you to:
- Choose from 3 beautiful templates, including a basic e-blast template, a sidebar template with a great big hero image, and a beautiful newsletter template
- Customize fonts, colors, and text size
- Upload a logo and add a tagline to the header
- Add links to social media profiles to the footer
- Add Donate and Unsubscribe buttons
- Oh, and did we mention that the templates are 100% mobile-optimized?!
After customizing to your hearts’ desire, you simply click a button to generate the Salsa-ready HTML, and cut and paste directly into Salsa.
Best of all, these templates have been fully tested across dozens of email clients in different browsers to make sure they look good everywhere (yes, mobile places too). Want to learn how to use it? Check out this great webinar, which explains how to use the tool.
Some amazing organizations are already using the template builder to implement successful email campaigns. Check out our friends at League of Women Voters, Center for Public Policy Priorities or these examples below:
Want to learn more?
On April 29, I will be speaking about the Email Template Builder and other innovative ways you can better engage your supporters at FUSE Austin. Join me as I present amazing ways to improve your donations and advocacy efforts by:
- Using donation upsell lightboxes
- Changing donor amounts when choosing recurring options
- Adding maps and utilizing browser locations to enhance advocacy campaigns
- Creating multi-step donation forms
- Adding a checkbox for instant sharing of your petition on social media sites
If you can’t make it to Austin, then follow the #FuseAustin hashtag on Twitter where we'll continue the conversation. These tactics, combined with an effective email marketing plan have been proven to increase conversion rates, overall user experience when on your forms, and long-term engagement.