I took a two-day content usability course from Nielsen Norman about a year ago, a good investment if only in its inspiring me to DO usability testing for clients and friends. The instructor swore that they’d never done a usability audit that didn’t reveal big failings wholly unknown to the site’s owners and builders. My experience has done nothing but extend that run yet further.
Anyway, Nielsen just released a significant study on usability of nonprofit websites. They want to sell you a report off this teaser site. And the teaser info might well inspire you to buy it.
They tested across a good variety of types of nonprofit organizations, listed on the site above. More than half failed to explain their “missions, goals, objectives and work” on the home page. (I wonder why the redundancy in those terms, but …)
Only 4% revealed how they use donors’ money. Not that surprising given the “branding” and board direction on many home pages.
Nielsen reports that “Amazingly, on 17% of the sites users couldn’t find where to make a donation.”
I’m not amazed at that stat. More like a sign of improvement. Especially since some of the groups are not all that reliant on small-gift donors. And I know that quite a few of these orgs are GREAT at leading people to give online.