23 (of 85) Affordable Web-Based Tools for Nonprofits
Many nonprofit professionals already are overwhelmed by all of the free or low-cost resources they have at their fingertips — and as the mobile Web and related startups continue to grow, prepare to be mind-boggled by all the new technology options available to your nonprofit in coming years.
Here’s a list of some of the resources you might find useful.
A comprehensive blog about all things related to quick-response (QR) codes, augmented reality and near field communication. Based in the U.K., 2d code is a must-read for the early adopters.
Ideal for mobile social networkers, this 99-cent app allows you to easily create panoramic photos on your smartphone. Simply tap the screen and pan your device in any direction. You’ll see your panorama being built in real time as every incoming frame is processed. This is a must-buy app if your nonprofit regularly tells your story through mobile photo-sharing.
A social search tool that allows you to easily track mentions of your nonprofit on social-networking sites, blogs and websites. Simply enter your nonprofit’s name, and Addict-o-Matic then creates a page of all your search results for easy future reference.
This website tracks what sites are the most popular in the world today. You can view a list of global top sites and top sites by country.
Animoto enables users to turn their photos, video clips and music into videos that can be uploaded to YouTube and shared on the social Web. It also offers its premium services for free through the Animoto for a Cause program.
A directory of quotes by famous people, this website lists thousands of inspirational quotes useful for tweeting and Facebook status updates. A good quote is certain to garner your nonprofit retweets and thumbs-up on Facebook any day of the week.
Bravo enables brands to capture user-generated videos directly from the Web. Nonprofits could use Bravo to capture testimonials from donors and supporters or position statements from advocates and activists — and it does offer discounts for nonprofits.
Cause.it is an iOS app that allows users to earn points for doing things such as volunteering at local food banks or animal shelters. Points can later be redeemed for deals and free items at local merchants.
This site provides an incredibly useful breakdown of Facebook users by age, gender and location. It also pulls in a feed of the most recent Facebook news and illuminates in real time the fastest-growing countries using Facebook.
This tool turns your smartphone or desktop computer into an audio recorder that allows you to easily share audio messages and podcasts with your supporters. You can either broadcast live (think of it as your own radio station) or host the messages on the Cinchcast server for later listening.
Cinchcast is ideal for nonprofits that are advancing their communications into real-time reporting while on location from fundraisers, conferences, protests, etc.
Clipix makes bookmarking — aka clipping articles and links — extremely easy. Nonprofit staff often need to manage and organize large quantities of Web links for later viewing, and bookmarking via browsers is becoming cumbersome. With a Pinterest-like design, Clipix is the new generation of online content management.
A great source for images for your nonprofit’s website, blog, e-newsletter and social-networking profiles.
Ideal for activist organizations, CrowdVoice allows organizers to create “Voices” of protest where users can monitor and contribute links, photos and videos of protests worldwide. It’s a creative, visual way to tell your organization’s stories of protest to your online communities.
Daily DoGooder is a free e-newsletter that delivers one, just one, excellent cause video to your inbox each day. If your nonprofit needs creative inspiration or wants to see what other nonprofits are doing to tell their stories via video, this is a must-subscribe e-newsletter.
A website (mobile app coming soon) that allows users to check in while doing good deeds. From eating healthy to volunteering at local nonprofits, users earns points that can then be redeemed for rewards or special discounts offered by partner businesses.
This website allows users to build visually appealing, interactive timelines using video, audio, images, location, social media and time stamps. Nonprofits can use Dipity to create timelines that highlight organizational history, current events and special campaigns.
Each month, DollarPerMonth.org selects three charities for its members (who have pledged to donate a minimum of $1 per month) to vote on. The winning charity receives 50 percent of the community donations, the second charity receives 30 percent and the third charity receives 20 percent. With only 36 charities selected per year, most nonprofits aren’t able to participate, but it’s a clever and powerful idea that could be easily duplicated by employee-giving programs and socially responsible businesses.
Flavors is a tool that allows nonprofits to easily create simple, well-designed websites for as little as $20 a year. For small nonprofits with tiny budgets, Flavors is an excellent option. Nonprofits that already have websites can use Flavors to create landing pages for social media and fundraising campaigns as needed.
Formstack allows nonprofits to easily create online forms to capture contact information of new supporters, volunteers and donors. You can even create custom forms to process donations on your website or blog or to manage event registrations.
FotoFlexer is a free Web-based photo-editing tool that allows you to cut, crop, resize and embed text and logos onto your photos. If your nonprofit is active on Pinterest or wants to make better use of your digital library, knowledge of photo-editing is essential.
A free, open-source software program that enables users to send group text messages from computers or mobile phones. It must be downloaded and is available only to nonprofit organizations.
Used widely throughout the globe, FrontlineSMS has empowered a texting revolution at the grassroots level by nonprofits in developing nations and has become a beacon for social good in mobile technology.
A user-generated charity review site that’s ideal for nonprofits that are too small to get officially reviewed by Charity Navigator or the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Alliance, your supporters can write reviews for your nonprofit that you can then link to on your “Donate Now” landing page. That said, you should also monitor this site (and others like it) for the rare rogue review.
Launched to enable donors and supporters to easily learn more about the nonprofits they support (or are considering supporting), the Giving Library is a portal to nonprofits that have created informational videos explaining their work, missions, accomplishments and future goals. If you are interested in having your nonprofit listed on the Giving Library, you can apply at bit.ly/SNtn4t.
(This article originally appeared in Nonprofit Tech 2.0 e-newsletter. Check it out to get the other 62 resources at the Nonprofit Tech 2.0 blog. A section of the e-newsletter entitled “Resource Spotlight” features a new resource/tool in each edition. To subscribe, go to bit.ly/g1KFsD.)