The nonprofit sectors rely on donation revenue to survive. So any free online tools for nonprofits can help them stretch their budget. Not only can they use the money for donor recipients, but they can also solve management problems within the organization. Thus, using free online resources for nonprofits is a win-win situation.
While most nonprofits use an all-in-one CRM (Customer Relationship Management) software, they’re missing out on separate tools that can have a massive impact on their charity.
With so many choices to choose from, which online tool is best for your nonprofit? It depends on what you’re trying to work out and accomplish. Here’s a breakdown of the 12 best online tools and resources for nonprofits.
12 Free online tools and resources for nonprofits
Nonprofits and not-for-profits are two different sectors. But both can use the same online tools to manage their teams, market their brand, create content, and communicate with their audiences. So, don’t be surprised if you come across online tools for nonprofits that other industries also use in this article.
Canva is a free online design application that lets people create visually appealing content. It’s an all-in-one tool that lets you edit videos online and use templates, pictures, and music for digital marketing purposes. It has free plans and paid subscriptions, so you can use it to design social media graphics, posters, and presentations.
This tool is one of the best free online resources for charitable organizations. It has a built-in content planner and brand tool kit, so everything you need for your organization is in one place.
Everyone demands high-quality content. Canva can help your nonprofit organization draft curated marketing materials for your supporters and presentation reports for board members and donors.
Canva can provide your organization access to premium features for free. You may include up to 10 people if you sign up for Canva’s nonprofit program. However, you’d have to pay for some premium elements.
It makes visual content creation a breeze because it’s simple and easy to use.
Since Canva lets nonprofits communicate their programs in a visual way, organizations like Forever Projects and Starlight Children’s Foundation use Canva to secure funds and raise brand awareness.
Mailchimp is a popular email marketing tool that lets people automate messages to keep customers. You can use this tool for free if you have below 2,000 contacts. However, you can only send 12,000 emails per month.
Nonprofit organizations need a platform where they can personalize email for fundraising purposes. That is where Mailchimp can meet your needs. When you make an email, you can customize each message with the person’s name.
As your email list grows, you don’t need to transfer or use another tool because Mailchimp offers a 15% discount to verified nonprofit organizations. So if your nonprofit is in the U.S.A, you need to show a copy of your official 501c3 to prove that you’re a tax-exempt organization.
TED Talk is a nonprofit organization that uses Mailchimp to send automated emails to people who subscribe to their updates. They’re an organization that provides a platform for people to spread their ideas.
Asana is one of the go-to project management apps nonprofit professionals use to organize their teams. It has a workspace dashboard that can help you easily communicate with employees, volunteers, and board members.
The nonprofit sector experiences fatigue and burnout during fundraising season. Since it’s such a hectic time, employees and volunteers start taking on different responsibilities just to keep up. As a result, certain tasks get delayed in the process. Times like these require structure, and that’s where Asana can help your nonprofit.
Keep your team on track with their tasks through Asana’s free plan. They can organize, manage, and track nonprofit projects from start to finish. But, if you plan to scale your nonprofit, you don’t have to worry about spending too much. Asana provides a 50% discount to eligible nonprofits like yours.
Asana has transformed the project workflow of a nonprofit in Australia called YMCA Victoria. After using Asana, YMCA Victoria was able to reduce email volume and improve transparent communication.
4. Google Analytics
Google Analytics is a free tool that examines website traffic. It has a reliable built-in reporting system that provides users with information to make better business decisions.
Every organization, even nonprofits, needs analytics tools to understand and track their audiences’ behavior. With Google Analytics, you get an insider look into what people do when they enter your website. As a result, you can make informed decisions on which tasks to prioritize or what part of your website requires more attention.
For example, if you’re running multiple campaigns each year, you can check which campaign is most effective. Once you know the ones that work best for raising money, you can copy the same strategy. In contrast, you can use a different approach next time when you find out the ones that don’t work.
GoFundMe is a crowdfunding platform that lets anyone raise funds from people online. Here people raise money for education, volunteer programs, pets, charity, and medical expenses. So if you’re running a nonprofit, GoFundMe can make it easy for you to find support.
GoFundMe is a great online resource for nonprofits every professional in the industry should know about.
It’s simple to use. All you need to do is start a fundraiser on the website, share it with your friends and accept donations. Other than that, you can create custom donation buttons for your nonprofit website to make it easy for donors to support your cause.
You can start your fundraiser on GoFundMe for free. However, it’s important to note that they charge a small transaction fee of 2.2% and 0.30 per donation. This covers the entire processing fee. So, for example, if you receive a gift of $100, GoFundMe will take $2.50, and you’re left with $97.50.
GoFundMe hosts many online fundraising programs like Cancer Research Institute, where the funds go directly to cancer research programs.
Slack is a tool for messaging and file sharing. It’s an excellent platform for hybrid teams to plan and communicate about tasks and projects in one place. Although you can do the same using email, Slack has a way to send reminders and updates to all team members automatically.
If you’re in search of one of the best communication apps for nonprofits, Slack is it. Time and time again, getting in touch with your team members has always been a struggle for most organizations. But with this app, you can connect with anyone in your workspace because teams can download it on any device.
Slack is free to use and offers tax exempt organizations an 85% discount for their Pro and Business+ plans. But you must prove that you hold a valid charitable status by the IRS. That is why nonprofits like Kiva use this channel-based messaging app to keep their team focused on their mission.
Trello is an online tool that organizes projects and builds team collaboration in real-time. It uses the Kanban board-style and list-making application so teams can move tasks across boards. Since it’s customizable, you can create your own workflow for your projects.
Depending on your nonprofit’s needs, you can sign up with Trello for a low cost or no cost at all. However, you may apply for a special discount if you have a registered charitable organization. So, if you need to save time and maximize productivity, consider Trello.
This highly visual and engaging app can do wonders for your nonprofit. It lets you and your team share files, track due dates, and reduce unnecessary tasks by automating actions like moving lists. Thus, giving you more time to focus on your mission.
Trello gave nonprofit organizations like DoSomething.org their time and energy back. Because of Trello’s built-in automation, the organization’s team was able to put their attention on their campaign goals.
8. Google Ads Grants
Google Ad Grants is a program by Google that offers qualified nonprofits up to $10,000 a month on digital ads at no cost. So if you want to advertise your programs and appear on search engines, Google Ad Grants lets you do it for free. But you must apply for it beforehand.
A nonprofit organization like yours needs to appear on the first few pages on Google so people can become aware of your cause. And that’s where Google Ad Grants can help you. Since paying for digital ads can be expensive, Google’s program lets you do it for free only if you fit their requirements.
Google Ad Grants was able to help Direct Relief raise awareness, increase website activity, and reach more donors online. And because of that, the organization was dubbed by Forbes with a 100% efficiency rating for fundraising.
Bloomerang empowers fundraisers to help their communities by providing them with donor management software. This tool makes it easy for a nonprofit organization to connect with donors through email marketing. Moreover, it has integrated data analytics, online giving forums, and engagement metrics.
All of these built-in systems let you review how effective your campaign strategies are. For instance, when you send donors emails, you can see if they opened them or not.
This user-friendly constituent relationship management (CRM) system assisted Wood River Land Trust in writing newsletter mailing lists, tracking meetings, and developing revenue reports. Thus, the organization was able to continue protecting and restoring wildlife habitats.
10. Google Workspace
Google Workspace is a productivity and collaboration tool with everything you need to run an organization. From Gmail, calendar, form, docs, sheets, and slides, you don’t have to look elsewhere for an office solution. If you need to collaborate and communicate with teams, this app has a chat room so you can work together in real-time.
One of the most popular and loved tools is Google Workspace because it has everything you need for nonprofit management. Aside from office needs, it also has video and audio calling features so you and your team can have meetings across time zones.
The best part about this office suite, it lets you have a free account. However, if your nonprofit requires advanced features, you may opt for their paid plans at a discounted rate.
Google Workspace hosts many nonprofit organizations like Crime Victims Treatment Center and Nuru International. It provided them with a cost-efficient platform so their funds could go towards their mission.
Grammarly is an online writing tool that helps writers and professionals proofread and edit their documents. This AI writing assistant reviews spelling, grammar, punctuation, and text clarity so you can deliver messages without mistakes.
Since charities rely on grants and appealing messages for donations, Grammarly can help you avoid any typographical errors. While their basic plan is free, you can still upgrade to premium subscriptions if you have a growing organization.
Another key feature of Grammarly is that you can use it on your email, Slack, and Google Workspace. So say goodbye to typos and inspire your supporters through writing. This is why the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank uses this tool. It helps them focus on delivering funding proposals instead of using their resources on outsourcing writers.
Zoom is a video communications tool that allows people to do video and audio conferencing. People can use this program through their desktops and phones to meet with clients and teams on the go.
Charities need to put their money into good use, and that’s where Zoom can help your organization. You can meet with your donors to talk about your programs or discuss major activities with your stakeholders online for free. However, if your organization requires unlimited meeting hours, you can subscribe to Zoom’s paid plans with a 50% discount.
Things to consider when choosing nonprofit tools and resources
The nonprofit sector is always careful about where they spend their resources. They can’t afford to trade off applications and tools over the people they try to help. So if you’re looking for software for nonprofits, there are some things you need to think about.
First, you need to consider your goals for that software and how much it will take from your budget. Second, see if this tool has the ideal built-in features that can help your organization. Third, check if the company offers nonprofit discounts. Finally, make sure that the program is easy to learn. If not, you may have to train your team on how to use it.