4 fully integrated website & database platforms for charities

Fundraising App Review

For small charities, getting your website to talk to your database and other systems can be a real pain. When they don’t talk to each other it can create confusion and extra admin and even result in donors being neglected. Commissioning custom integration work is expensive and can often leave a heavy maintenance liability because digital technology moves so fast. 

There are tools that can do a great job of synchronising data between your different software systems. Zapier and PieSync, for example, can be very useful if you have some technical know-how within your team. But even this approach can become complicated and shouldn’t be underestimated. 

So, for small charities, an attractive approach can be to have everything dealt with in one system. By sacrificing some flexibility you get a robust system that handles data really well. As data protection becomes an ever more important, these platforms are looking more and more attractive.

Online requirements often fall into the following categories.

  • Website 
  • Supporter or membership database
  • Email marketing
  • Event booking

There are lots of software apps dedicated to each individual area. The following platforms offer a solution that integrates all four of these functions. 

Nation Builder

Standard pricing: £29 - £700+ per month
Enterprise pricing: Custom (probably expensive)

Nation Builder is an integrated system that was initially focused on grassroots campaigning. It’s used by many political organisations but can be powerful for campaigning charities too. Prices start from $29/m and increase as your list of constituents grows.

Key features include:

  • Create custom, action-focused websites
  • Process donations with no transaction fees
  • Match your email list to social media & send unlimited emails
  • Track your success with goals & dashboards

Wild Apricot

Standard pricing: $70 - £270 per month
Volume pricing: Custom (discounts for multiple instances)

Wild Apricot is primarily aimed at membership organisations. It has a very broad range of tools that can very easily be integrated into the heart of your organisation’s website using the built-in website builder. The community package costs $70/m dollars and covers you from 500 to 2,000 constituents.

Key features 

  • Membership Management - Attract, renew, search, and manage your members with ease
  • Event Registration - Grow your events with easy online promotion & registration
  • Website Builder - Build your online presence with a simple drag and drop website builder
  • Online Payment - Easily accept online payments and donations with the option to set up recurring dues
  • Contact Database - Write your own emails and newsletters, or choose from hundreds of professionally designed templates
  • Mobile Solutions - Manage your membership and even check in event guests with our mobile app

Hubspot

Prices are typically in the £ hundreds
The pricing model is complicated with seemingly no upper limit

Hubspot is a powerful “all-in-one” marketing platform. It’s primarily aimed at companies but nonprofits can learn a lot by making use of its 360-degree view of the funnel from initial interest through to donor. This view of the entire funnel has proved a powerful proposition and Hubspot has grown rapidly. Hubspot helps nonprofits manage content across different marketing channels and easily capture information from potential donors. The pricing is complex and can get expensive quickly.

Key features

  • SEO and social media tools to increase online presence
  • Lead capture tools to connect with potential members, volunteers & donors
  • Engage people with clear calls to action like donating or becoming a member
  • Inspire constituent with personalised follow up communications to boost retention

Hubble

Prices from £45 - £100 per month
Simple pricing with a clear upper limit

Hubble is a simple-but-powerful suite of fundraising apps built for small charities. It focuses on small fundraising and membership organisations who see their website as a central tool in their fundraising strategy. Prices start from £45 per month.

Key features

  • Powerful website building app with a range of publishing tools to build engaging content and promote action. 
  • Fully branded on-site donation processing.
  • Contact management and email marketing integrations. 
  • Membership management tools like restricted content and renewals. 

 

Date: 
30 October 2017
Andy Pearson