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There’s plenty of news coverage about how the economy is bothstraining businesses and inspiring them to look for more creativeways to be successful. In a way, the situation is the same fornonprofit organizations, but the financial strain put on them iseven greater, since they are dependent on donations from the peoplewhose budgets are tighter than ever.

That’s why it has become essential for nonprofits to thinkcreatively about how they can stretch their cash in new anddifferent ways, both to keep their organization afloat and tocultivate new memberships, support and growth. The need fornonprofits to have a Web presence is obvious in this wired world,but for organizations with limited budgets, it might seem next toimpossible – but only if they don’t explore their options.

In fact, like many clubs and other small organizations,nonprofits can take advantage of new developments in software thatmake it easy to create a website that they can use to theiradvantage. While there are a number of options out there, there area few things you need to consider when selecting software tomake anonprofit website.

* Fundraising capabilities: It’s an essential function fornonprofit software, so make sure that the software you choose hasthe functionality you need. Including fundraising capability onyour website by using a software platform like Wild Apricot, givesyour bottom line the potential to grow organically as people visitthe site. When combined with traditional fundraising methods,onlinefundraising could be the key to seeing your organizationthrough the toughest economic times.

* Communication potential: Everyone has a busy schedule thesedays, and it can be a challenge to get together for meetings to goover minutiae. If your website has membership management tools anda place where members can come together to discuss yourorganization’s issues and functions, you’re making it easier foreveryone to participate.

* Keeping costs low: Building a website from the ground up, withall of the necessary hosting and complex features built in, isoften cost-prohibitive for small nonprofits. By using company likeWild Apricot, you can get all of the tools you need for as littleas $25 per month. And because creating your site is as simple asusing a word processing program, it’s easy to launch and tomaintain the site as your organization grows.

With the pressure on to stand out to potential donors – bothlarge and small – building a Web presence with fundraising abilityis essential to taking your nonprofit into the future. With aminimal investment in easy-to-use software, you’ll be able to getstarted sooner and more easily than you might have imagined.

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