Reaching the Next Generation with Responsive Web Design

Gen Z

Recently, I’ve been reading articles on Generation Z.  If you aren’t familiar with the term, it describes the generation born from the mid-1990s (around 1995) to the mid-2000s (around 2010).  They’re the generation after Millennials.  

In an article in HuffPost, contributor George Beall gives us some context: 

“This generation makes up 25.9% of the United States population, the largest percentage, and contribute $44 billion to the American economy. By 2020, they will account for one-third of the U.S. population, certainly worth paying attention to.”

My son turned 20 this year, which puts him smack in the middle of Gen Z.  So, admittedly, my weird curiosity about their characteristics and habits is a little personal.  But, Beall has a point – they’re worth paying attention to. 

What does have to do with your non-profit organization? 

With the oldest of them graduating from college and the youngest graduating from preschool, this is your next generation of donors, volunteers, and advocates. 

This generation has a huge passion for social change. They live in a world with constant access and exposure to what’s going on around them. Because of this, they have a heightened awareness of diverse humanitarian issues, as well as practical ideas for solving them.

So, because (1) I love a good statistic and (2) these are super relevant – here are three interesting stats about Generation Z’s philanthropic interests:

Over a third of Gen Z (32%) donate their own money according to the Cassandra Report.  

A study by cultural forecasting firm Sparks and Honey found that 26% of Gen Z teens volunteer regularly.

And nearly 80% of Gen Z have expressed interest in volunteer opportunities and careers with nonprofits.

They are ready and willing, all you need to do is connect with them!

Generation Z generous and they’re mobile – are you responsive?

Dubbed the iGeneration, this group hasn’t known a world without smartphones and social media.  Online research begins in elementary school. The digital landscape is their playground. And their expectation is that you meet and communicate with them in their world.

If you want to connect with this Gen Z, you need to get plugged in.  It’s time to step up your online presence by understanding the importance of responsive web design.  Here are some things you should know:

Responsive web design means that your website is compatible with mobile devices. 

Having a responsive website means that the screen view adjusts automatically to fit the device you’re using whether it’s a phone, tablet, or desktop.  Mobile compatibility has become a necessity with more than half of all internet access now happening on phones.  

Responsive sites load quickly. 

Attention spans are getting shorter!  StaticBrain.com reports that Gen Z’s attention span can max out at around eight seconds.  Web Marketing Company, Blue Corona, reported that 47% of people expect a web page to load in 2 seconds or less.  That seems a little demanding…until you get stuck on a site waiting for images to load!  

Responsive web design integrates will social media.

Generation Z has expansive social networks.  They click, share, connect, and respond through social media.  Having a responsive website means your organization can get into the flow of those conversations. Links to your site can be easily shared and opened on the go – increasing your reach and your credibility.  

A responsive website will support your campaigns.

An added benefit of integrating with social media is your ability to leverage all that social sharing to support your campaign goals. E-commerce continues to grow, and within that, the percentage of mobile e-commerce is also growing.  It’s becoming easier and more natural for people to initiate financial transactions online and on-the-go. Savvy fundraisers are using responsive web design to tap into these resources.

Heraclitus, Greek philosopher Heraclitus said, “change is the only constant in life.”

We can’t be sure what the future holds.  But change is inevitable. And sooner or later adaptability is necessary for success.  Mobile optimization has become an expectation.  

The common thread of every nonprofit organization is the pure and passionate belief that they can change the world.  Growing up post 9-11, in the wake of the Great Recession, and amid sweeping social changes, Generation Z has the heart, energy, and desire to mobilize around that belief.  

The question is: does your nonprofit have an online presence that will attract their attention? 

At D3FY, our website platform gives you a beautiful responsive online presence, so your organization can be part of the conversation for the next generation.

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