3 ways analytics can help fundraising

The phrase big data is thrown around quite often now that social media is gaining traction in the private and public sectors. With the ability to track specific metrics such as page views and what's being said about your nonprofits, you shouldn't ignore the power of analytics.

Listed below are three ways Web analytics can help increase your donation processing:

1. Plan ahead before you dive in: Analytics are a great tool if they're used properly. Before your charity dives head-first into the deep end, make sure to outline what your goals are. A lot of social media monitoring platforms are set up for commercial purposes, so it's important to establish a sound foundation of what you're looking to gather, The Wall Street Journal says. Keywords and phrases are your best friends here, that way you can optimize the ones that work the best and you'll know where to direct your analytical efforts. Once a sound strategy with end goals is in place, a charity can better navigate the waters of big data.

2. Spreadsheets aren't your enemy: Making sense of a large spreadsheet filled with numbers is difficult; in fact, the mere thought can be intimidating. But, these numbers are valuable to your organization, so a thorough effort in understanding the meaning behind them is much needed. The Guardian advises that charities partake in a training course to eliminate mistakes before they happen. If a nonprofit has the ability to identify where its donors are coming from and how long they're staying on their website, for example, it can direct energy toward that source and promote its online fundraising tools in that channel.

3. Roll with the changes: Once you've established what metrics best fit your analytic needs, don't be afraid to change things up a bit - or at least add-on to your already successful platform. Conversely, if certain aspects aren't yielding the results you had hoped for, amend or adjust what you're doing until it does work, the Guardian suggests. It sounds simple enough, but too often organizations fail to take advantage of big data's capabilities because they don't see immediate results or they don't understand the information in front of them. If this occurs, go back and review your strategy and your end goals - the discrepancy often lies there. By identifying any wrongdoing, a nonprofit can avoid making the same mistake and focus its energy on the successful aspects of a big data analysis.


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