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6 Best Free Website Builders for Nonprofits (TESTED) in 2023

Abi Carter Abi CarterWebsite Development Expert
While there are many good free website builders out there, few of them truly meet the needs of nonprofits. A lot of builders are too expensive, too difficult to use, or simply lack features that are useful to nonprofits (like advanced contact forms or appropriate templates).

You need a website that looks good and can help spread the word about your mission, without forcing you to break the bank. In an ideal world, it would help you build a mailing list, publicize fundraising events, establish and maintain relationships with supporters, and even let you collect donations – all for free.

Is that all too much to ask for?

Actually, no. I can say this confidently because I’ve tested all the best website builders to see how they measure up on the features that matter most to nonprofits. I found six builders that will let you build an eye-catching website for free, with no coding knowledge required.

And even if you decide to upgrade to a paid plan, these builders will cost less than you might think.

Short on Time? These are the Best Website Builders for Nonprofits in 2023:

  1. Wix – The most generous free features for engaging supporters, like email marketing and event management.
  2. Squarespace – The best visual templates for telling a captivating story, free for 14 days.
  3. Zyro – The easiest website builder with super cheap monthly plans.

See 3 More Great Options | Comparison Table | FAQ

What We Look For in the Best Website Builders for Nonprofits

There are a bunch of website builders out there that are suitable for nonprofits, but what separates the good from the great? To assemble my list of the best, I focused on the features that are most useful to nonprofits:

  • Free plans. Most of these website builders will let you create a decent website for free. I’ve also thrown in a couple of bonus options that don’t have a free plan, but could be well worth the investment, depending on your needs.
  • Ease of use. Saving money is almost as important as saving time. All options on this list are suitable for absolute beginners and will let you create, update, and manage your website without requiring technical skills.
  • Customization features. With so many charitable causes online, your website needs to stand out to attract donations and volunteers. The builders here have templates specifically for nonprofits that let you upload your logo, alter colors and fonts, and more.
  • Tools for accepting support. A nonprofit wouldn’t get very far without supporters, whether they give donations or volunteer directly. I’ve only listed builders that help you collect donations and/or build a community via event management, email marketing, members-only pages, and more.
Quick Disclaimer!

All free site builder plans are united on a couple of shortcomings: you won’t be able to use a custom domain (instead, you’ll use something like www.nonprofit.builder.com), and your site will display ads from your chosen builder.

If you’re not happy with these limitations, you’ll need to upgrade. Squarespace has one of the most affordable starting plans for dropping ads and getting a custom domain. Plus, you can use Squarespace’s 14-day free trial to test all of its features before you buy.

Wix nonprofit template
Wix has both quality and quantity. Its nonprofit templates always have the right features.
One of the best things about Wix is its template library. Over 18 of Wix’s 800+ templates are designed specifically for nonprofits, and all are modern, mobile-friendly, and unique. You’re not forced to use one of these 18 options, though – you can fully customize any Wix template using the intuitive drag-and-drop editor.

You can also try Wix’s Artificial Design Intelligence (ADI) tool to get set up quickly. You just need to answer a few questions, and it will create a slick site with all of the features you need already included. 

Once you’re ready to go, the set-up wizard will walk you through everything, and you won’t need to change much if you use a good template anyway. Most Wix templates for nonprofits come with built-in contact forms, donation buttons, social media integrations, and more. There aren’t many website builders that offer so many features on the free plan.

It’s worth noting, though, that you’re limited to using a Wix domain name and having Wix ads on your free website. It’s not ideal, but I can think of worse downsides to having so many features available to you for free.

wix logo alt 2

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Features

  • Email marketing. Wix’s free plan lets you send up to 5,000 emails per month, which is perfect for keeping your supporters updated. You can send more emails by subscribing to a paid plan of Wix’s suite of marketing tools, Ascend.
  • Wix Events app. The Events app will let you host and showcase events online, which can be great for fundraising. You’ll need to upgrade to sell tickets, but the free plan is still useful for collecting RSVPs and general promotion.
  • App market. Of the hundreds of third-party extensions in Wix’s app store, many are free. For instance, you can coordinate volunteers with the Scheduler app.
  • Online courses. You can use Wix Online Programs to create courses for training volunteers. Or if you’re an educational nonprofit, it can host the material for your beneficiaries. You can also just add downloadable files for simpler resources.
See more great features in our in-depth Wix review.

Free Plan?
Templates for Nonprofits 18 (plus 12 for religious organizations)
Accept Donations
Starting Price $16.00

Squarespace's Malone Template
Squarespace is known as the home of beautiful websites. It’s not hard to see why.
With no free plan, Squarespace isn’t the ideal choice if you’re working with a shoestring budget. But if you do have some funding at your disposal, this builder is well worth the small cost. You can use Squarespace’s 14-day free trial to try the builder out without even entering your credit card details, so you’ve really got nothing to lose by giving it a try.

One of the top reasons why you might want a Squarespace website is its great selection of gorgeous, modern-looking templates. Squarespace has seven templates designed specifically for nonprofits, and they’re all ultra-customizable thanks to the drag-and-drop editor.

When it comes to features, Squarespace excels. You can add a customizable donation button on the Business plan and above, so visitors can contribute via PayPal, Stripe, or Apple Pay. Higher-tier plans also give you professional email addresses, which will boost your credibility.

Squarespace’s best features are seamlessly integrated into the editor, so you don’t have to waste any time looking for them in an app market.

squarespace logo alt 2 1 1

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Features

  • Video Studio. Squarespace Video Studio is a beginner-friendly app that helps you quickly make good-looking videos for your organization. Video can be the most compelling way to appeal to potential donors, so this is pretty useful.
  • Events. You can create and promote fundraising events with events pages and calendar blocks. This is a great way to boost your engagement, even if you’re on the Personal plan and can’t sell tickets through your website.
  • Blogging tools. You can share your success stories and win more supporters by adding a blog page to any Squarespace template.
  • Members-only areas. By limiting certain areas of your website to registered members only, you can foster a sense of community, share resources with volunteers, or reward donors.
Read our full Squarespace review to see how you can build a beautiful website.

Free Plan? 14-day free trial
Templates for Nonprofits 7
Accept Donations Business plan and above
Starting Price $16.00

3. Zyro – Ultra-Cheap Websites for Nonprofits

Zyro nonprofit template
I admit it: I like Zyro’s templates. They’re simple, but pretty.
Zyro isn’t free by default, but starting at just a few bucks a month, Zyro is among the most affordable site builders out there. For less than the price of a barista coffee each month, you’ll get a great website builder with 100+ templates, a free domain name for a year, and 24/7 support.

You’ll also get several AI-powered tools that make setting up and running your website a breeze. Whether you need a tagline, logo, or even a blog post, Zyro has an AI generator that can help. Admittedly, these tools won’t give you Oscar-worthy content, but if you’re short on ideas, you’ll find them super useful.

You don’t need to be a technical genius to use this builder, either – Zyro is one of the easiest-to-use options on this list. You can customize almost anything, making it easy to tweak the design of your website to suit your nonprofit. Simply put, if you need a website builder that’ll help you make an impact on a budget, you’ll love Zyro.

zyro logo alternative

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44 users used this coupon!

Features

  • AI generator. If you’re having trouble getting started, Zyro’s Artificial Intelligence tool can help build a basic website for you. You can also use AI to help generate a name or logo for your organization, or text for your website.
  • Stripe payments. Although it doesn’t offer a tool specifically for donations, Zyro lets you accept Stripe payments from the Business plan upwards.
  • E-commerce tools. Many nonprofits boost their income by selling merchandise. If that’s something your organization could benefit from, Zyro’s e-commerce plan is one of the cheapest out there.
  • Embed code. Zyro doesn’t have a ton of features, but you can embed page widgets for third-party services – like donation buttons, volunteer scheduling, or even mailing list sign-ups.
Read our in-depth Zyro review to see more great features.

Free Plan?
Templates for Nonprofits 7
Accept Donations Yes, on the Business plan and above
Starting Price $2.61

IONOS template example
IONOS has dozens of templates specifically designed for nonprofits.
IONOS might not be the best-known website builder out there, but it has a lot to offer for an extremely low price. I love that each plan has two options (with or without an online shop) so you don’t need to pay for unwanted features just so you can take donations online. This will help you maximize the effect of every incoming dollar. 

On top of that, IONOS offers free professional email, a free SSL certificate, and a free domain for one year if you sign up for a yearly plan. Sure, you’ll have to pay for your domain name after that, but it’s a great way to get your website up and running with minimal startup costs. 

It’s worth bearing in mind that your customization is extremely limited on the Starter plan. You’ll only get a handful of templates to choose from, and all of them have fixed layouts and limited font options. You’ll have to upgrade to the Plus plan or above if you want the full template range. That’s not to say the templates available on the Starter plan are bad – far from it – but don’t expect lots of design freedom at this price point. 

1and1 ionos logo alt 4

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Features

  • Multilingual support. Display your website in 45 different languages thanks to IONOS’s automatic translations. This is ideal if your organization works across different countries or with people that speak a range of languages. 
  • Logo generator. IONOS lets you design and edit a simple logo for your organization for free. It’s a great feature to have if you don’t have the budget to hire a professional logo designer. 
  • RankingCoach. If you need some extra help reaching new supporters, install the RankingCoach app. It’s an automated tool that’ll help improve your website’s SEO. RankingCoach is a paid add-on, but it’s a lot cheaper than hiring an SEO expert.
  • Social media integrations. Reach supporters through your social media platforms by setting up Facebook ads and selling products through your other social media channels. You’ll even get a link shortener to make it easier to share your products on Twitter. 
See how you can set up a website for less in our comprehensive IONOS review. 

Free Plan?
Templates for Nonprofits 20 (eCommerce plans only)
Accept Donations eCommerce plans only
Starting Price $5.00

SITE123 Children's Voice template
SITE123 doesn’t have many templates for nonprofits, but what it has is satisfactory.
If you’re a complete newbie and are looking for ease of use above all else, SITE123 is the most beginner-friendly builder on this list. A helpful set-up wizard shows you how everything works the first time around. You can edit any page element simply by clicking on it, or quickly change your site’s color scheme or header from the “design” menu tab.

It’s worth noting that SITE123 favors quick and easy building over full creative control, and so its major drawback is that you don’t get as many customization options as with some other builders. On the free plan, you can only make basic edits to fonts and colors, and even on the paid plan, you’ll never be able to truly alter the template you start with.

But if you want to get your site online quickly, SITE123 is perfect. SITE123’s free plan has plenty of features built in, and lets you access all templates. There are 7 templates just for nonprofits, and all of them are automatically mobile-responsive, so they’ll look good on any device.

site123 logo alt 2

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Features

  • Donations. If you’re on the free plan, your site can still take donations – but only via offline methods, like bank deposit, check, cash, or phone. To activate online donations, you’ll need to upgrade to a paid plan.
  • Form builder. By integrating a form into your website, you can respond to online inquiries, collect sign-ups for events, or gather email addresses for your mailing list.
  • Blogging tools. Starting a blog is a great way to keep your supporters updated on your nonprofit’s activities, or even spread the word about upcoming events. SITE123’s free plan includes blogging functionality.
  • FAQ pages. You can easily add and edit pre-built FAQ pages (or page sections). This is great for showing your transparency as a nonprofit, and addressing any skepticism.
Read our expert SITE123 review for more details.

Free Plan?
Templates for Nonprofits 5
Accept Donations Yes, but the free plan only allows offline payments
Starting Price $12.80

6. WordPress.com – Best for Communicating With Supporters

WordPress.com theme example
WordPress.com doesn’t have a lot of nonprofit themes, but all are very customizable.
WordPress.com has a steeper learning curve than the other options on this list, but it makes up for that with a lot of power. There’s no drag-and-drop interface; instead, you interact with a sidebar on the left to add page elements.

WordPress.com pages and blog posts are highly customizable, with dozens of page elements available for use – from multiple types of contact forms to special image galleries.

This means WordPress.com is great for organizations that use a lot of written content to build up support. However, free users can’t change much about their overall site theme. WordPress.com offers three templates for nonprofits, but you may find WordPress.com’s other blogging templates work well for your needs.

Although the free plan is powerful, you’ll need to upgrade to WordPress.com’s cheapest paid plan to take donations online. Upgrading to a paid plan also lets you access premium themes, some of which are more customizable than the free ones.

wordpress logo alt 2

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Features

  • Embed Kickstarter campaigns. You can embed a Kickstarter campaign into any page or post – all you need is a link to the Kickstarter campaign.
  • Content management. You can write, organize, and schedule as many blog posts as you want. Organized posts keep your website easy to navigate for visitors, and keeping track of your unpublished drafts can help your workflow.
  • Sign-up forms. Get your mailing list started by collecting sign-ups directly from your website.
  • Timeline blocks. You can add a ‘Timeline’ block to any post or page to display a series of milestones. This is good for highlighting your nonprofit’s accomplishments and boosting your credibility, plus you can use it to highlight future goals.
Read our full review of WordPress.com for more details..

Free Plan?
Templates for Nonprofits 3
Accept Donations Personal plan only
Starting Price $4.00

These Are the Best Site Builders for Nonprofits

So there you have it: when it comes to finding a good website builder with solid features for nonprofits, there’re plenty of options out there. You can accept donations, schedule events, blog about your community impact, and create email marketing campaigns – even on a free plan, as long as you can put up with a subdomain and ads.

If you really need a free website, use Wix. In terms of flexibility, features, and ease of use, it simply can’t be beaten – no other website builder offers as much for free. The paid plans are super budget-friendly, too.

If a free plan won’t work for your organization, then check out Squarespace.  This builder is a great option for those who want a top-notch site design with powerful features.

Need an impactful website on a budget? Sign up with Zyro. For just a few bucks a month, you’ll get a premium website builder with tons of flexibility.

For a quick summary of the best website builders for nonprofits, check out my handy summary table:

Free Plan Best Feature Best For Starting Price
Wix Generous marketing tools Nonprofits trying to build support on a budget $16.00
Squarespace 14-day free trial Striking templates and galleries Nonprofits telling a visual story about their mission $16.00
Zyro Super cheap pricing plans Nonprofits seeking a professional site within their budget $2.61
IONOS Flexible pricing plans to suit all budgets Nonprofits that need to make every dollar count $5.00
SITE123 Easy-to-use and simple editor Nonprofits that need to get online quickly $12.80
WordPress.com Blogging tools Nonprofits regularly communicating with supporters $45.00

FAQ

How can I create a nonprofit website for free?

First, sign up with one our recommended website builders for nonprofits. Next, pick a template. You can usually add page elements (contact forms, for example) as needed, so choose based on design more than template features. Then customize your template, and hit ‘publish’!

What is the best free website builder?

Overall, I recommend going with Wix, as it gives even free users access to its huge template library, App Market, and other tools like email marketing and SEO.  If Wix doesn’t work for you, most website builders offer free plans. Check out our list of the best website builders for 2023 to see what’s on offer.

Can I collect donations for my nonprofit with a free website builder?

Most builders let you add a donation button on a free plan, but it won’t process payments until you upgrade. SITE123’s free plan lets you take donations – but only through offline methods (like cash or check).

Is Wix good for nonprofits?

Wix is a great option for nonprofits, whether you want to use its free or paid plans. Wix’s drag-and-drop editor is beginner-friendly, and Wix sites are highly customizable. Free plans can use email marketing and event scheduling tools, but you’ll need to upgrade to a premium Wix plan to get your own domain and remove Wix’s branding.

Is Squarespace free for nonprofits?

Squarespace doesn’t offer a free plan, but it does offer a 14-day free trial. The paid plans can quickly give you your money’s worth, though. Squarespace offers beautiful templates, eye-catching donation buttons, and effective marketing tools, all of which make it easy to build an engaging website for your nonprofit.

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Roberto Sato
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Thanks Abi for this valuable payment processing content. Great Read. Is there any hidden fees and pains of online donation platforms?
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Website Planet Team
Hi Roberto, thanks for your question. It depends on the platform you want to use. Some donation platforms ask the donor to add an amount on top of their donation to support the running of the platform, and others charge a percentage of the donation. Most website builders, like the ones on this list, will let you add a donation button on a free plan, but you would have to upgrade and pay to process payments.
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Executive Director
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I used your info to work through my questions on a Site123 site. I received expert help even on a free basis. I went with a one year paid plan. Thanks!
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anonymus
3 Reply
This promised 'really free website builders' and then wasn't about that at all. Didn't seem to give us what was promised.
3 Reply
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anonymus
4 Reply
This was a really great article thanks! I appreciated the break down at the end with all of the checked boxes. It helped me make a better decision.
4 Reply
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anonymus
1 Reply
MailChimp now offers web design! I've always like the way their email campaigns works and we use it for our non-profit club emails. However we are currently using Squarespace for our website. The UIs tools between the two are easier with MailChimp, but more tedious within Squarespace. Any insight on this new MailChimp platform would be great!
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Kris
3 Reply
Tried to read about NFP Website templets on WIX, wanting to find out if they provide a free name option for domain before I commit. Hard to find any info on their NFP site offer and difficult to contact without having to sign up first.
3 Reply
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Royelen
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Will a non-profit run afoul of their non-profit status for having the promotional content of the tool running on the site, say for instance, Wix advertising that you can create your own site for free along the top?
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Website Planet Team
That shouldn't be the case but in order to be sure, check the guidelines of the specific non-profit.
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Diana Lopez
3 Reply
Hi, thanks for the amazing article! I will send this to my nonprofit web design clients. Btw, check out Divi for WordPress! It's the most intuitive builder and you're right, WordPress is best for future growth.
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