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5 reasons to switch your website to HTTPS

5 reasons to switch your website to HTTPS

5 reasons to switch your website to HTTPS

home / Archives for May 2018

If you don’t have an HTTPS website, you’re likely to be losing traffic, decreasing your search engine rankings and increasing the risk of cyber-attacks. As of this month, Google Chrome is also displaying a ‘not secure’ warning for HTTP websites, which is likely to further decrease user trust and reduce your site traffic and engagement.

Here are the five key reasons why you need to secure your site with an SSL certificate:

1. it protects you against hacking

Using HTTPS guards against hacking and cyberattacks by encrypting data and providing a confidential browsing experience, such that data cannot be stolen or tampered with.

2. it improves your search engine rankings

HTTPS is a signal of website security and quality, meaning that HTTPS sites are ranked more highly by search engines. This means HTTPS sites are more likely to appear in search results.

3. it boosts user trust & conversion rates

When a visitor uses your site – and especially when they sign-up for services or make a purchase – they are trusting you with their personal information. Users are becoming increasingly aware of security issues and many will be put off by a non-secure site, especially in light of the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) laws.

4. it guarantees authenticity

HTTPS ensures that your website and its associated web server are authenticated, such that no one can impersonate or tamper with your organisation’s website. Without this, spoof sites can imitate your content, steal your traffic and provide misleading or inappropriate information for your users.

5. it protects more than just personal data

Even if you don’t have webforms or collect user data or payments, HTTPS ensures your URLs and content are kept secure. That’s why HTTPS is needed across all types of websites and webpages.

Fortunately, it’s now easier than ever to transfer your site to HTTPS – all you need is an SSL certificate and it’s totally FREE to get one! The certificate can even be kept up-to-date automatically. Go to Let’s Encrypt to get your free SSL certificate.

Alternatively, get in touch and we’ll be happy to switch your site to HTTPS on your behalf.

how to lower your website bounce rate

how to lower your website bounce rate

how to lower your website bounce rate

home / Archives for May 2018

All websites need to consider their audience and what users want to see. If you have a high bounce rate, you’re probably not meeting users needs effectively, as we’ll explain…

what is a website bounce rate?

Bounces are single-page visits to a website. The bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who bounce by only visiting one page – in other words, the number of users who don’t explore any further around your site before leaving. Google has a more detailed bounce rate definition here.

For example, imagine you had two visitors to your site’s homepage yesterday. One visitor bounced by exiting without exploring futher, and one visitor did not bounce and continued to explore other pages on your site. The bounce rate would be 50%.

does bounce rate matter?

A well laid-out website with relevant and interesting content keeps visitors entertained and encourages them to explore further. Therefore, to oversimplify things, the lower your website’s bounce rate, the better you’re doing in terms of engaging users with your site. The higher your website bounce rate, the less successful you are in terms of retaining and engaging visitors.

This is important, because if people are only visiting one page of your site, you may be losing vital customers or supporters, who are not continuing along the user journey to complete desired actions, such as making purchases or donations. That said, if users are able to find everything they need on the first page they visit, then a high bounce rate is to be expected. Alternatively, having a high bounce rate could be because inappropriate users are coming to your site (for example, if you have advertising targeted towards irrelevant keywords).

how to lower your website bounce rate

Here are some tips on how to engage website visitors so they don’t bounce:

  • Add unique and interesting content: like any good book, if the content is enticing, your visitor will hang around longer and want to read more
  • Promote key messages quickly: ensure your most important messages are displayed immediately to catch users’ attention
  • Have clear navigation: this quickly tells visitors what else is available on your site
  • Ensure rapid page speed: if your website loads slowly then users are more likely to exit
  • Maximise responsivity and browser compatibility: this will ensure users can access your site across different browsers and devices
  • Add internal links: these encourage users to click through to other relevant content
  • Give clear calls to action: don’t confuse or overwhelm visitors – give clear calls to action to direct them to the most relevant pages
  • Keep an eye on analytics: this will help you to analyse, update and optimise your site over time

If you’d like help understanding or lowering your website’s bounce rate, please get in touch.


how to create a digital donation funnel

how to create a digital donation funnel

how to create a digital donation funnel

home / Archives for May 2018

Charities rely on regular donations to fund their cause and make the world a better place. But in today’s digital landscape of multiple devices, mobile apps and constant Candy Crush distractions, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to reach and engage donors effectively. 

Your website and other digital platforms can be fantastic tools for fundraising, as long as they’re optimised with this end in mind. We explore how to create a digital donation funnel to maximise online donations…

digital donation funnel is the journey a user takes through your website or app, which guides and encourages them to reach the final destination of making a donation. It involves:

  • understanding users and their needs
  • having a clear fundraising message
  • emphasising your donation call to action
  • removing obstacles that might prevent users from making a donation

We’ll now explore and consider each step in turn.

1. understand your audience

Who is your average website user? How old are they, what device do they use, and what are their interests? These are all questions you need to ask yourself before constructing the donation funnel on your website. A 40-year-old business woman using her desktop computer at work will have very different expectations to a teenage boy browsing his iPhone after school.

Creating user personas is a UX research method that can help you understand your users and their needs. It’s based on gathering and analysing data, and then formulating virtual personas which represent groups of donors with common traits (such as age, location, wealth etc). This makes it much easier to visualise who’s going to be using your donation funnel and understand what their expectations are.

2. create a clear fundraising message

Now you know exactly who’s being targeted, you can create a tailored fundraising message to grab their attention. The message will differ depending on the charity’s specific cause, mission and persona(s), but here are some general tips:

  1. Simplicity is key: Users spend an average of 15 seconds on a website (according to this study), so if you want to capture their attention, do it fast with a simple message.
  2. Make it personal: Show potential donors how your cause relates to them and explain why they should donate to you rather than another charity.
  3. Keep suggested donations realistic: If you decide to provide a suggested donation, make sure to choose the right amount. This serves as a psychological anchor and you’ll find that most actual donations will be at a similar level. The optimal figure depends on your cause and potential donors, but if it’s too high, it may put people off, and if it’s too low, people may donate less than they could have.
  4. Say what funds will be used for: Donors want to know they’ve made an impact, so be specific about how you’ll spend donations and the difference they’ll make.
  5. Thank donors: Thank users for considering making a donation, and thank them again after making a donation. Gratitude not only costs nothing but will also make people more likely to return and donate in the future.
  6. Encourage recurring donations: Options for automatically-recurring monthly or yearly donations encourage users to donate regularly with minimum effort. If you tie these to specific events (such as Christmas) or the user (such as an anniversary gift for their partner), they are more likely to sign-up as the repeated donation will have a special significance.

3. emphasise your fundraising call to action

Your fundraising call to action (CTA) should stand out to your donors like a lighthouse guiding them home. Use a striking design (shape, size and colour) for the button and place it in a prominent position on your digital platform. Finally, remember that users might not always directly access your homepage or may visit several pages before deciding to donate, so ensure your fundraising CTA button is accessible across your digital design.

4. remove obstacles

Even if you’ve gotten the previous steps exactly right, overlook this important piece of the puzzle and you may lose a significant number of potential donors. Obstacles can include things such as being required to provide excessive personal information or having to wait for the donation page to load – here are a few classic issues to be aware of:

  1. Too many clicks: Saving your users time and effort results in better conversions, so make sure users can get to your donation form quickly and easily, without too many clicks (which may result in them giving up).
  2. Asking for excess information: Include only the fields you absolutely need in your donation form, and make sure not to ask for the same information twice if your form has more than one step. If users have to provide too much personal data or spend a long time completing your form, they’re likely to drop off.
  3. Lack of responsivityWith more internet sessions taking place on mobile and tablets than desktops, it’s vital that your website is responsive so that users can donate on their preferred device.
  4. Slow website loading – just a one second delay in page loading can result in 7% fewer conversions, so make sure to test and optimise your website page speed.
  5. Cognitive overload: Remember that you have just 15 seconds to capture donors’ attention? If your website is cluttered or features too many calls to action, users may overlook your important fundraising message. Feature only the most important content and key information, especially on your homepage.

By following the four steps outlined in this article, you can take your users on a seamless journey through your website, resulting in lots of valuable donations to your charity.

If you’d like help to create a digital donation funnel, or require on-demand assistance with any other aspect of your charity website, please get in touch.