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17 Essential Tools Every Nonprofit Needs: Free and Discounted Resources to Streamline Operations and Boost Impact

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Content Marketing
Email Marketing

Do you ever feel like there's just not enough time in the day to get everything done as a nonprofit professional? You're not alone! But don't worry, I've gathered a collection of helpful tools to lend you a hand. Whether you are wrestling with project management, donor relations, or online visibility, these tools are here to make your life a little easier. Best of all, these tools are FREE!

  • Manage Projects: Feeling overwhelmed by scattered tasks and unclear deadlines? Asana's free version keeps your team organized and on the same page. Asana offers a 50% discount for nonprofits if you want to use all of its amazing features Click HERE to learn more.
  • Craft Newsletters: Ditch the personal email account! Mailchimp offers a free tier to design professional and engaging email newsletters for your subscribers. You can also get a 15% discount as a nonprofit if you want to upgrade to a higher tier. Learn more by clicking HERE.
  • Boost Online Visibility: Want to reach more people but can't afford ads? Google Ad Grants provides nonprofits with a free $10,000 monthly budget for text-based search ads.
  • Stay Connected with Donors: Zeffy's free plan helps smaller nonprofits manage donor information and streamline fundraising processes.
  • Facilitate Teamwork: Google Workspace for Nonprofits offers a suite of free tools including Gmail, Docs, Calendar, and Drive for seamless collaboration within your team.
  • Proofread Your Work: Grammarly's free plan catches typos and grammatical errors before you hit publish. Polish your writing further with the free Hemingway App to improve readability.
  • Present Data with Flair: Can't afford fancy data visualization tools? Tableau Public lets you create interactive charts, graphs, and dashboards to showcase your data in a compelling way.
  • Empower Peer-to-Peer Fundraising: Give Lively's free platform empowers your supporters to create and run their own fundraising campaigns, expanding your donor network. Zeffy also offers this service for FREE!
  • Schedule Social Media Posts: Short on time to manage social media? Buffer allows you to schedule posts in advance for Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram (with a limited number of free accounts).
  • Track Link Performance: Wondering if people are clicking your links? Bitly's free plan shortens links and provides basic tracking analytics. They recently acquired QR Code Generator, another free tool to connect your audience to campaigns and events.
  • Analyze Website Traffic: Google Analytics offers free insights into who visits your website, how they find you, and what they do once they arrive.
  • Test Website Usability: See how visitors navigate your website with Microsoft Clarity's free heatmaps and recordings. This helps you identify areas for improvement.
  • Find Free Images: No budget for stock photos?  Pexels and Unsplash offer high-quality images you can download for free. (But, I recommend taking your own pictures whenever possible!)
  • Design Engaging Visuals: Canva is a free and user-friendly tool to create stunning graphics and edit photos for your website and social media. Nonprofits can get the professional version of Canva FREE! Click HERE to learn more and sign up now!
  • Build Online Communities: Facebook Groups provide a free platform for fostering discussion and connection among your supporters within a familiar platform.
  • Manage Volunteers: Simplify volunteer recruitment and communication with a free Volunteer Management tool by SignUp.
  • Securely Store Passwords: LastPass helps you manage all your passwords securely with a single master password. The free plan offers basic features for password storage and generation.

Did I miss any hidden gems on this list? Feel free to email me at Steph@SuccessForNonprofits, and I will add them.

What Nonprofits Need to Know About Email Changes in 2024

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Email Marketing

New Industry Requirements on Bulk Emails

As of February 1, 2024, major email hosting providers such as Google and Yahoo are rolling out enhanced security measures to improve deliverability and combat spam. These changes signify a significant shift in how bulk emails are handled and emphasize the importance of email authentication.

What's Changing, You Ask?

Moving forward, any emails sent from unauthenticated email addresses will be blocked from reaching recipients' mailboxes. This means that if you're accustomed to using generic email addresses like for mass marketing emails, it's time to reconsider your approach.

For instance, if you're using a Gmail address for your marketing campaigns, it's highly recommended that you switch to an email address that aligns with your website domain. While certain email marketing platforms like Constant Contact will continue to support send-to addresses from Google or Yahoo (e.g.,, others like Mailchimp will not.

Implementing Custom Domain Authentication

For businesses with their own domains, complying with these new requirements entails implementing custom domain authentication and publishing a DMARC (Domain-based Message Authentication, Reporting, and Conformance) record. This is particularly crucial for entities sending more than 5,000 emails to Gmail or Yahoo addresses within a 24-hour period.

Fortunately, popular email marketing tools such as Constant Contact and Mailchimp have provided clear guidelines for navigating these changes. Users can refer to the following resources for detailed instructions:

By following these steps and ensuring compliance with the new industry standards, businesses can maintain their email marketing effectiveness while also enhancing security and deliverability for their recipients.

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