Tips for Donor-Centric Website Design

Good website design means never having to say ‘click here’


Charities can go a long way to make their website more reader-friendly so potential donors can scan a page and quickly pick up whatever information they need.

For example, instead of using a lot of words, websites should contain strong visual cues to guide donors. “You can use design to move a reader’s eye,” says Ann-Laura Parks, a graphic designer and artist—and director of development and communications at South Arts, a nonprofit arts group in Atlanta. “Good design means never having to say, ‘Click here.'”

Some of the other design flaws she says plague nonprofit sites:

All capital letters. It’s hard to read if it goes on for more than six words.

Too much bold type. Reserve it for section headers so people can scan and read the parts they’re interested in.

Light type on a dark background. Use it in moderation and only with big, chunky fonts, which are easier to read than skinny ones.

Underlined text. It slows the reader down and reduces comprehension. Use it only for links.

Overuse of italics. Use just for emphasis.

Too many fonts on one page. Two fonts can add interest, but more than that can look messy and unprofessional.

More Insights from Dunham+Company: The One Thing Not to Do When Facing a Funding Crisis

 Find out how to take apply simple, repeatable digital fundraising principles, as Tom Perrault, Chief Operating Officer, shows you how in his course ‘Key Principles of Online Fundraising’ from the Dunham Institute.