11 powerful integrations for your charity website


Gone are the days when your organisation’s online presence is confined to just your website. In the same way that you use social media and other channels to manage the first levels of engagement, you can now improve the performance of your charity website by integrating it with a range of  modern web apps.

This keeps your website simple, lean and affordable and enables you to adapt quickly in a fast moving digital world. Third party systems often require little to no setup fee and only attract a subscription fee once you get to a certain size.

This guide takes you through the 11 most useful functions you can outsource from your website to web apps.

Save time and money and stay agile.

Comms functions

1. Email sending with Mailchimp


The world’s most mainstream email sending platform is easy to integrate with your website. They publish full instructions here and many website platforms (including ours) include integration with Mailchimp as standard.  

What we recommend:

  • Use a single email field (don’t ask for their name) to make it easy for people to sign up. They can always give you more details at their next point of engagement with you.

  • Keep it simple by avoiding custom templates. Use MailChimp’s flexible basic templates with their Email Designer to create something based on your brand colours. This keeps things flexible and robust so you can focus on great content.

  • Check out 13 Ways to Decrease Unsubscribes From Your Charity Newsletter.

  • Make sure you take advantage of their non-profit discount.

2. Comments with Disqus


Comments are a great way to engage with your audience. It can be difficult to get this kind of engagement but it’s a great thing to aim for and an affirmation that your content is working. Disqus makes it easy for people to comment by allowing them to login with one click using a range of social media profiles.

What we recommend:

  • Chat to your developer about adding Disqus to your website. It’s often really easy.

  • Review how engaging your content really is. Read 10 Lessons From 100 Posts if you want some inspiration.

3. Team communications with Slack & other tools


Occasionally we get asked to build staff sections or intranets into our sites and one of the purposes is the keep people updated.

What we recommend:

4. Presentations with Slideshare


Slideshare, now owned by LinkedIn, is a great way to share all sorts of presentations with the public or colleagues. With such simple administration it’s easy to get started and to integrate with other social media platforms.

What we recommend:

  • Get into the habit of always uploading slides from your website to Slideshare.

  • Create news stories or blog posts more easily by doing a brief write up on your latest event and embed the slides into the post using Slideshare.

Media functions

5. Blogging with Tumblr


It’s pretty easy to get a blog going on your website but if you want to start small, keep things organic and creative and make it super easy to post from anywhere - go with Tumblr. The mobile and tablet apps are a dream to use and you may find yourself posting more often simply because it’s so fun.

What we recommend:

  • If you are considering a blog then start with Tumblr and see how you get on. This is a simple way to test your assumptions and see if it’s sustainable.

  • If you already run a blog on your website consider this as a niche channel for sharing short updates from the field, or insights from your Director, etc.

  • Read 6 Reasons Why Your Charity Should Be On Tumblr.

6. Video with Youtube or Vimeo


Very few organisations host their own videos anymore. By using Youtube or Vimeo you can easily display videos on your website without worrying about the costs of storing and streaming them (which can be high). 


Both platforms give the added benefit of offering a new channel to a different audience.

What we recommend:

  • Choose one platform - normally Youtube or Vimeo.

  • Create a ‘channel’ to group all of your videos together, adding categories as you add more videos.

  • Don’t worry too much about professionalism - low budget videos can generate just as much engagement if the content is interesting to your audience.

7. Podcasts with Soundcloud


If you’re starting out with sharing audio material be it music or podcasts, try Soundcloud. Their embed code places a neat audio player on your website that loads of people will be familiar with enabling them to listen to, ‘favourite’ and share your audio easily. Like Youtube and Vimeo, Soundcloud saves you hosting costs and opens up a new channel to you which brings the potential of a broader audience.

8. Photos with Flickr


Flickr is a long-standing destination for pro photographers and enthusiasts alike. It’s much easier to manage and edit your photos there than within your website CMS. You can easily create and embed custom galleries and you can be confident that images will always load quickly and be optimised for the device they are viewed on.

What we recommend:

  • If you have taken a series of photos at an event and want to write a news story about what happened, you can embed a Flickr gallery of the photos rather than placing them one by one, much like embedding presentation slides with SlideShare above.

Commerce functions

If you want a tightly integrated payment process where people never leave your site you’ll probably want to integrate these functions within your website using a payment system such as Stripe. For those who need it, we build all these functions into your website but if you need to keep setup costs down, these are great solutions.

9. Shop with shopify


Given the security requirements of taking card payments it may be worth getting started elsewhere with your first few products to test the concept. With Shopify you can open your own little charity shop online, simply add buy buttons to your website or even use Pinterest to tout your wares. We've written a another post on How To Sell Items on Your Website With Shopify.

What we recommend:

10. Donations with Just Giving


We reviewed all the major donation platforms a little while ago and for us, Just Giving came up trumps coming if first place in three of our four areas of review. The user experience is great and the social sharing options help your campaign spread. There are loads of great options though.

What we recommend:

11. Event booking with Eventbrite


If you want to list events on your own site but not worry about creating a booking process simply link each event to Eventbrite and let them take care of it. There’s no monthly fee, they just take a percentage fee based on tickets sold so it’s win win really. You do have to replicate your events in both places but if you’re only hosting a few a year it’s no bother really.

12. Membership registrations

Membership organisation needs are often more complicated because so many of the functions set out above need to be brought together into a single platform. This is a big reason why we developed the White Fuse platform. We've also explored this more in our post on how to create a membership website on a tiny budget.

10 September 2015
Owen Roseblade