Apply for a Free Website Design for Your Nonprofit

Apply for a Free Website Design for Your Nonprofit

As one way of giving back to the community, Freelance Web Solutions is offering free website design and development services to non-profit organisations in order to help them use the web to drive their missions forward.

Proposals are solicited only for Non-profit organisation. Proposals from other sectors, will not be considered. It’s undisputed fact that world is going digital. Over half of the world’s population is already online. This is an opportunity for every nonprofit organization to showcase their activities online and thereby attracting potential donors and volunteers.Up to five websites will be granted this year.

For over ten years, we’ve worked with several nonprofits. Along this journey, we have learnt a lot especially how we can build a useful nonprofit website. You can appreciate our work by checking,, or just to name a few.

Website Design Features

    • Up to 10 pages i.e Home, About, Projects, Gallery, Contacts and Get Involved
    • Online Donation System
    • Online Volunteer Recruitment
    • Newsletter System
    • Social Media Integration


    • The organizations should be from indigenous Malawians
    • Must be ready to meet direct costs i.e for domain registration, web hosting and web
    • management services.
    • Be able to mention why they need the website

Application opens: March 16, 2019
Application closes: April 15, 2019
If you have any questions on how to apply, please contact Faith Chisale at

How to Measure the Success of Facebook Campaigns

How to Measure the Success of Facebook Campaigns

If you are reading this article, it is either you want to start a new Facebook Advertising campaign or you already have one but you are failing to know how to measure its success.

You are not alone. Many people spend hundreds of dollars to run Facebook ads but don’t have a clue as to how they can measure the success of their campaigns.  So, if you are one of them then continue reading this article.

To begin with, measuring the success of Facebook campaigns are pretty straightforward because Facebook provides you with an abundance of metrics that allow you to track your ad’s results.

However, one thing I have discovered is that most business owners find it difficult to measure the success of their ads because they fail to set clear goals and objectives for their campaigns.

Just like any other marketing campaign, you need to have a clear goal as to why you are running a campaign. What is your goal? More Clicks? More Likes? More Video Views? The choice is yours. However, the point is, without a clear goal for your campaign, you won’t be able to measure its success.

The good news is that Facebook helps you to come up with a formula to measure the success of advertising campaigns. That’s why when you start a new campaign, from the ads manager you are asked to choose one objective.

Your choice determines the kind of data you will receive as the main result to measure. For example, when you choose “boost post,” you’ll see a cost per interaction. By choosing “send people to your website,” you’d get a cost per link click and when you select “promote your page,” you’ll get a cost per like, etc.

Setting Up a Facebook Campaign Goals

Yes, you might be wondering as to how you can set an effective campaign goal. One thing you need to understand first of all is that a goal is something you want to achieve at the end of the campaign.

Therefore, the following are some of the common goals of Facebook Ads:

Brand Awareness

If you want to promote your business to reach many people, then brand awareness can be ideal for you. This means that your success will be measured based on the number of people who have seen or reached by your Ad. So, even if people don’t comment and like your posts, it won’t be an issue.

Lead Generation

Do you want to generate new potential customers? Then, you need to set up an ad campaign in which you will be able to collect customer information such as phone number and email address in exchange for a product/service discount or something valuable.

The success of this campaign can be measured by looking at the number of people who have shared their information by messaging you or signing up for your newsletter.

Driving Sales

Sometimes you may need your ads to give you more sales. Therefore, your campaign can contain a direct product link to your online shop for online purchase or a text which simply asks your customers to visit your physical shop in exchange for a discount or something valuable.

You can measure this based on the number of people who have actually purchased the product by clicking your link. Link clicks only doesn’t matter on this. It can also be a number of people who have visited your physical shop and bought your goods.

So, as you can see, it all depends on your campaign goals and objectives to be able to measure
its success.

If you want to know more information on this, our certified online advertising professionals are
here to help you.

Understanding Ecobank’s Ecommerce Payment Gateway

Understanding Ecobank’s Ecommerce Payment Gateway

I am assuming that you have already heard about Ecobank Web Acquiring System. If you haven’t, it is still cool — as by the end of this post you will be able to grasp what this system is and why I call it a game changer.

I thought of writing this blog post after receiving many questions regarding the system. In fact, Ecobank is the first bank to introduce the system in Malawi and we are the first to integrate it at Hashmar Shoppings.

We were also invited to demonstrate how the system works during the official launch which took place at Sunbird Mount Soche Hotel in Blantyre on May 3, 2018. Thanks Lumbani Manda and the entire Ecobank team for the invitation.

So, to help you understand this system, consider the following scenario: You have an online shop, a restaurant, a hotel or any other business and you need to start accepting payments online.  The first thing that comes into your mind is how you can collect those payments because you are not registered as a financial institution. But still more, you need to increase revenue and grow your business online.
This is where now you need to think of solutions that can truly meet your needs and the needs of your customers. A solution that is more secure and user-friendly.

Web Acquiring happens to be one such solution. This involves entering a contract with a bank known as ‘Acquirer’ that will be responsible to handle and process your debit/credit card payments online.

The acquirer, also known as acquiring bank or merchant bank, is a bank or any other financial institution, licensed as a member of Card Association e.g. Visa or MasterCard, that creates and maintains your bank account. These financial institutions have to comply with the regulations and meet requirements of Card Association before they are approved to become an acquirer.

Ecobank is an approved financial institution that allows shop owners, travel agencies, hotels etc to receive their payments online in a convenient way. Ecobank follows security standards for fraud prevention. It is a Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) compliant. Therefore, you don’t need to worry about security or fraud.

How Ecobank Web Acquiring System Works

Firstly, you need to have a business account with Ecobank. This is an account where the payments you receive online will be settled to. Then you need to submit an application to become a merchant of their Web acquiring system.

If you meet all the requirements, the bank then will create a merchant account for you and send you an API alongside necessary documents on how you can start to accept payments on your website.

Once you complete the integration, you will actually go a number of steps to test the system in sandbox or I should say trial mode to ensure the system works as required. If you pass all the necessary steps, Ecobank then gives you other credentials for live transactions.

How Long Does it Take to Integrate the System?

The timeframe of the integration process varies from a few minutes to months or years depending on the level of knowledge of your developers. The good thing is that the Ecobank team is always there to help you get this done.

However, if you still get stuck, you can buy our plugins for Woocommerce, Magento, Prestashop which will allow you to integrate the system within few minutes. For our e-commerce clients, these plugins are provided for free.I should also mention to say, so far, we have a solution to every coding problem that one may face during this process.

After the Integration, What Next?

After you have successfully integrated the system, a new payment gateway is added on your checkout/payment page.

For the online shops for example, when a customer chooses this payment option during the checkout process, the order details is sent to the payment processing link, where during the payment process, the acquirer (in this case Ecobank) authorizes card transactions and connects issuing banks (cardholders bank) on your behalf as a merchant.

Whenever a buyer uses a credit or debit card in a purchase, Ecobank either authorizes or rejects the transaction based on the data from the issuing bank and card network (like VISA or MasterCard).

In short, Ecobank receives the payment authorization request from your website and then sends it to the issuing bank for approval. If the purchase is approved, the funds are credited to your account. The approval by the issuing bank is instant while payment settlement to the merchant’s account is done within 24-48 hours maximum.

Also, depending on how you have configured your website, any response that will come from Ecobank as a payment processor, will be sent back to your website so that you can determine what to do next. E.g to cancel, hold or process the order.

Why Should Malawian Businesses Go for Ecobank’s Web acquiring System over other solutions?

Well, in short, I can say, when you use platforms like PayPal, Stripe etc when someone completes an order on your website, the money is not credited to your bank account directly. It goes to these institutions that, then process the payment and send you (normally via wire transfer).

You also need a bank account in countries like USA for you to be able to receive the payment, which is a non starter.

With Ecobank’s Web acquiring, when someone makes a payment, it goes directly to your account. You therefore need to have an account with them for you to be able to receive the funds directly.
However, your customers can make a payment using Visa debit/credit card or MasterCard issued by any other bank.

How Much Does it Cost

Ecobank doesn’t charge the customer but gets a commission from the merchant which can be negotiated with the bank. The more the transactions the less the commission will be. Ecobank also doesn’t charge merchants any setup fees.

However, if you are not a developer get prepared to pay setup fees to external developers who will create your website and setup this system for you.

If you are a Freelance Web Solutions client that shouldn’t be a big deal of course, because as I have mentioned above, we have plugins for almost all popular shopping carts that will make the integration process a breeze. Just send a call back request and we will be back to you with more details.

Lastly, I can say Ecobank’s Web acquiring system is a game changer. It has really revolutionized the ecommerce industry in Malawi and no doubt, it will complement to boost the country’s economy.
A big credit should also go to Reserve Bank of Malawi for approving this system. I just hope to see more of similar innovations from other local banks.


Nonprofit Website: ONE Effective Way to Get More Donations and Grow Your Email List

Nonprofit Website: ONE Effective Way to Get More Donations and Grow Your Email List

Having a website for your nonprofit organization is a great step towards success. However, as we always say, just having a website means nothing.

No matter how decorated it looks, if it has no any return on investment (ROI), you get zero out of ten. Of course, it depends on the type of goals you set up for your website but mostly, people want their website to attract online donations and/or increase their mailing list. Every organization needs money to support its causes and a mailing list to engage the donors and volunteers; and the website provides this opportunity.

Nevertheless, not all people are able to get donations online or increase their mailing list because they fail to define their value proposition. In this post we will discuss one way to increase your online donations and grow your mailing list by simply defining your value proposition.

Imagine you have a high class website with more visitors coming, reading through your About Us page, checking your projects, reading your wonderful stories and even go as far as the Donation page, but leave the website without taking any action?

If you already have a website I am sure that at some point you might have experienced or you still experience this. But why do hundreds of people visit your website but still no signup to your newsletter? Donations? Do you think you are not doing a great job? Or is it that your cause is not worth it? No! A big NO! You might be screaming, ‘if no, then why? Why me?’ Don’t worry! I can understand your pain but wait…! Open your website in a new tab especially where you embedded your donation and newsletter signup forms…………..


Great! Now, let’s talk about these two key features one by one.

Donate Button/Donation Form

Your form still looks good, right? Fantastic! But when was the last time you received a donation through that form? If you have never received any or you get little than expected, then I suspect your donation form has no any value attached to it. It’s just there, to fill blank space.

Yet, this is a great opportunity for you to offer value. We are not talking about the values of goods here but an emotional value – something that will influence someone to contribute to your cause. Or is there any text accompanying the form? If so, what does it say? Is it something that can entice people to contribute?

Let’s say you are a nonprofit organization working on getting girls back to school. Instead of only placing the donate button, you may inscribe some text and attach it to the donation form saying: “By choosing to donate, you are helping 3000 girls in Mangochi to go back to school and reduce maternity mortality.” Got it?

Now compare that with a website which only has a donation form with a text “Donate”. If you are interested in donating, which one will you go for? Obviously, the first one because you know why you are donating – there is an emotional value attached to it.


Likewise, an E-newsletter is very important for nonprofits. It helps you to engage with your volunteers, your donors and even provide updates to the people who share the same vision with you. However, if your newsletter signup form just have a title or a text like “Newsletter” or “Sign Up For Our E-Newsletter”, that’s enough a reason you should be failing to grow your mailing list. These texts don’t provide any effective value proposition.

The reason why people should signup is not communicated and it will make them wonder what kind of content they will receive and how often if they are to provide their email address. Therefore, if you are a nonprofit organization working on girls education like the example above and you want to get more signups, your text might read like this: “Sign up for monthly news, and stories of our girls.” The value is clear, right? If I’m interested in girls’ education and I want know how this organization is changing the lives of girls, I will definitely sign up. After all, I also know that emails will only be sent once a month, so I’m not concerned about daily emails flooding my inbox.

To sum up, many nonprofits fail to get more online donations and grow their mailing list because they fail to provide value propositions. They fail to communicate the benefits visitors receive or will receive for taking action on their website.

For instance, you may go for a business website and someone selling weight loss pills might write this text alongside their newsletter signup form: “Signup to our newsletter and Lose weight in 30 minutes.” That’s a clear benefit to giving away your email address, right? Great! It’s the same with a nonprofit website.

If you have a website with these things taken into consideration and still more you can’t get donations or grow your mailing list, you can contact us and request a free one hour consultation.