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Starting an Online Business All-in-One For Dummies®, 3rd Edition by Joel Elad, Shannon Belew

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Building an Online Donor Base from Scratch

As with any commercial Web site, your online success depends on attracting customers. In this case, those customers are your donors, supporters, or constituents. At the end of the day, your goal is to bring these qualified visitors to your site.

These people are actively interested in your mission and are prepared to invest money, time, and good will in your cause. To find and keep this online donor base, try these three actions, which we call the G.E.E Whiz factor:

  1. Get your site noticed.
  2. Engage passersby.
  3. Establish a relationship.

images It sounds simple. In truth, it is simple. The only difficult part is that many fantastic causes reach donors by way of the Internet, and, ultimately, your organization is competing with each one of them. That's why the ones that are the most successful in e-philanthropy are the ones that best communicate the G.E.E. Whiz factor.

Get your site noticed

Develop a strategy to put your Web site on the radar map. This step requires actively promoting your site to existing members of your organization and introducing it to prospective donors from around the globe. The International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) uses every opportunity to get supporters to help spread the word. For example, this nonprofit not only consistently provides opportunities across its Web site to donate or become active in their cause but ...

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