Our Blog

Posted by

Dan Gothard

Operations Director

Integrating social media into your charities website

So you’ve started using social media? Started a Twitter feed or a Facebook page? That’s a great start. The next question we often hear is “Can I put it on my homepage?”.

Showing your visitors that you are on social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook from your website is a good idea, but how it is appropriate to do this very much depends on how you use the networks. (Also, if you haven’t updated Facebook in 6 months, maybe that link to it on your website is doing more harm than good!)

The two common routes chosen are just linking to the pages via an icon or text link, or integrating a feed into the page.

Having a Facebook or Twitter icon is appropriate for most charities who actively use these tools. The links don’t need to be too obvious unless you are running a specific campaign, a link or icon in the footer of your site is normally just right.

Many charities choose to integrate a Twitter feed (or RSS feed from another platform) directly into their homepage. The homepage of your website is vitally important to the effective navigation of your website, so space here is definitely at a premium. If your Twitter feed is regularly updated and your tweets provide relevant information not found elsewhere, or show how much “buzz” you are creating, then this may be appropriate. If your tweets are really just links to content on your website such as news articles, it may be more appropriate to have something else on your homepage instead, as Twitter may not be the best way to present this content.

If you do choose to integrate your social feeds into your website, remember that you do need to keep them up to date. If you are trying to show the buzz you are creating and your feed hasn’t been updated for a month, it can look really bad and do more harm than good. Also remember if the feed is of user generated content you lose some control of the content of your website so it will be necessary to carefully monitor that this isn’t used for abusive purposes.