By Heather Mansfield, founder and editor-in-chief of Nonprofit Tech for Good

According to the 2022 M+R Benchmarks Report, nonprofits pay an average of $3.31 to secure a lead [i.e., capture an email address] through digital advertising. Most small and medium-sized nonprofits can’t afford to experiment with digital advertising for lead generation, but there are other means of securing new leads for a fraction of the cost – namely, your nonprofit’s website empowered with any of the following unique call-to-actions (CTAs).

1) Top bar opt-ins and links

The red newsletter opt-in top bar on Nonprofit Tech for Good is the best-performing newsletter CTA on our website. Over the last six months, the top bar has resulted in 973 new contacts compared to 476 new contacts from a (now removed) popup form that appeared 20 seconds after load to non-subscribers. At a cost of $13.99 a month, MailMunch is an exceptional value for adding top bars and other CTAs to your website. See also OptinMonster.

Top bars can also be links to pages on your website. For example, the Nature Conservancy uses a maroon top bar to send visitors prompted by TV ads to their monthly giving donation page.

2) Slide-in “Donate” prompts

Approximately 20 seconds after landing on the website for the Colorectal Cancer Alliance website, a small “Donate” popup slides in featuring a recent donation. Clever!

3) Embedded opt-ins and donation forms in blog and news content

A growing trend is to add large, visually prominent CTAs to the body of blog posts and news articles approximately halfway down the page. Nonprofit Tech for Good embeds a newsletter opt-in at the bottom of each post (see below) which surprisingly results in 5-10 new subscribers daily.

1) Embedded newsletter opt-in on the Marshall Project blog

Email newsletter sign up form embedded in the middle of a nonprofit's blog post.

2) Embedded donation form on the Human Rights Watch blog

A donation form embedded in the middle of blog post.

4) Top of homepage donation forms

The ACLU has had a donation form featured at the top of their homepage for almost a year and while there is no public data on its performance, the form must be performing well or it would have been removed months ago. The concept is worth experimenting with! It’s worth noting that after you click the “X” to close the form, it is no longer visible for 24 hours.

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About the Author

Heather Mansfield is the founder and editor-in-chief of Nonprofit Tech for Good. Fueled by a strong passion for the Internet, Heather spends her days (and some nights) helping nonprofits, charities, and NGOs worldwide utilize the internet as a tool for social good.