Google Grants support nonprofit outreach and fundraising efforts

Google is helping select nonprofits reach more constituents with Google Grants, according to Non Profit Technology Network. Google Grants offers eligible organizations in-kind online advertising through its Google AdWords program. About 4,000 nonprofits receive these grants, Google reported.

Nonprofit grantees receive thousands of dollars
The search engine offers select nonprofits $10,000 a month, a daily budget set to $329, in in-kind AdWords advertising, Business2Community indicated. Ads for organization will appear on the right side of the search engine screen. After seeing an ad online, 76 percent of donors said they go online to learn about a nonprofit organization, according to a Google and Millward Brown Digital study. 

Hubspot, an inbound marketing software company, indicated that the program has the potential of leading 10,000 to 40,000 new visitors to a nonprofit's site. Google Grants secures a marketing budget for free, raises awareness of an organization's purpose and tracks online donations, newsletter sign-ups and volunteer registrations. Hubspot reported that it's essential nonprofits apply for Google Grants and tap into this lucrative strategy, one of the biggest missed opportunities in non-profit marketing.

Google Grants come with eligibility requirements
To be eligible in the U.S., nonprofits must hold a current 501(c)(3) status assigned by the Internal Revenue Service and have a functioning website with credible content, according to MarketDomaination Media. Google Ad grantees are required to link to one nonprofit website approved in the application. There can't be revenue-generating ads on the nonprofit's website, either.

Additionally, nonprofits must manage AdWords by logging in monthly. This means organizations must respond to email requests, among other requirements. Ads must reflect the nonprofit's mission. Other program stipulations include only running a keyword-targeted campaign, text ads and selecting keywords that have a maximum of $1 per click.

Nonprofits benefit from specific keywords, mobile marketing and frequent testing
With the grant, nonprofits can create ads that link to their homepages, donation portals and other crucial landing pages. Organizations can also reach their online target audiences based on location, language and time, according to Non Profit Technology Network. Grantees can also check their effectiveness by tracking which ads and keywords perform the best.

When applying, it's crucial for organizations to submit a strategy for promoting their mission, including specific initiatives, and identify their target audience. Here are a few tips for grantees to succeed with in-kind advertising.

1) Utilize Specific Keywords
LunaMetrics suggested creating a robust keyword list, and Google recommended using short- and long-tail keywords that are 2-5 words. Visitors search in different ways, so it's best for an organization to adopt a wide variety of match keywords, from broad to exact matches.

To connect with potential website visitors, it's best to use quotes. Quotes only search for topics with words or phrases in that specific order. Don't forget to add negative keywords to ensure unwanted, matching words don't pop up.

2) Incorporate mobile marketing
Embracing the mobile space reaches more constituents because mobile traffic is growing at a rapid rate. Nonprofits should have a mobile responsive site, LunaMetrics suggests. This way, donating, sharing content and watching a video is easy for constituents.

3) Don't forget to test and analyze results
Testing the Google campaign effectiveness is crucial. Knowing what is working and what isn't will improve the campaign, as nonprofits will continue to employ helpful strategies.

According to Hubspot, nonprofits can see whether visitors who clicked on ads led to membership, donations, volunteer sign-up and social shares.

In addition to Google grants, nonprofits also need robust online tools that make it easier to adapt to changes in online technology.