Empowering Charities, with the Charity Digital Skills Report 2024

April 22, 2024

Hayley

Empowering Charities: Pixeled Eggs' Journey with the Charity Digital Skills Report 2024

The Pixeled Eggs not-for-profit client journey began 12 years ago, working with organisations such as Macmillan Cancer Support and ONE.org. We have grown and established ourselves in the charity sector through our founding principles of being a responsible and sustainable business. In addition to a loyal charity client base that refers to and advocates good work, today, our clients include a wide range of causes, from Diabetes UK, The Earthshot Prize, MS Society, Practical Action, Digital Catapult, Nesta, and Brainkind. We now support charities and purpose-led organisations of all sizes.

Beyond our charity website design and development work, we have supported the sector through activities such as our Charity Comms partnership and working with BIMA to produce an industry-standard benchmarking report of charity websites.

Aligned with these principles and our continued support for the sector, we’re pleased to announce that in 2024, Pixeled Eggs has formed a lasting partnership with the Charity Digital Skills Report.

The survey is open until 26 April. Previous respondents commented on how it gives them the time to step back and reflect on what they need and the barriers to digital adoption. It also helps to spark ideas, explore new areas, and learn more about relevant digital topics and tools. If you’re a not-for-profit organisation in the UK, a voluntary, charity, or social enterprise, and you are at any stage with digital, I encourage you to take part in the survey here.

The Charity Digital Skills Report was founded in 2017 by Zoe Amar. It’s since become the annual barometer of charities’ digital skills, attitudes and behaviours. It also provides data and analysis on these areas and tracks critical success factors for digital transformation, including leadership, funding, governance, and strategy.

Many charities across the UK use the report to benchmark themselves, provide credibility to funding bids, and understand the key digital skills and trends across the sector and what they need to do about them. It’s become an invaluable resource for charities and organisations supporting them, helping them measure progress with digital and set their aspirations for the future.

What our partnership looks like:

Our conversations started with Zoe Amar and the team in 2023, as we regularly used the report to understand the sector’s position, barriers, and opportunities for digital adoption. We were excited to talk about how we can support and empower the not-for-profit sector, give back, and create a partnership that enables us to provide our expertise and support.

  • User testing and feedback, we helped review the 2024 survey, feeding into areas to explore and benchmark further.
  • As an organisation that includes sustainable design in our work and services and in response to the need to consider a sustainable marketing mix, this year, we’ve helped shape the report to survey the sector’s position on climate change and digital best practices. Last year’s survey reported that 37% were keeping an eye on their tech carbon footprint, up from 27% in 2022.
  • We’ll publish joint content on topics relating to the report findings and outcomes from expert guidance, best practices, real-life learnings, and case studies. Check out the Zoe Amar Digital blog in the coming weeks and months.
  • Webinars and clinics to help the sector overcome barriers make learnings and practical actions to improve their digital estate.

Key outcomes from 2023

The 2023 report uncovered many key and relevant trends for Pixeled Eggs, from digital trends such as the sector’s adoption of artificial intelligence (AI) to supporting causes through the cost-of-living crisis and the sector’s approach to diversity, equality, and inclusion as a digital agency.

In 2023, 504 respondents took the time to respond. These organisations were representative of all sizes (73% income of up to £1 million) and levels of digital adoption, with 52% of respondents being at the early stages. This year, as we reach the final week of the survey, we’re already at 420 respondents. Take part in this year’s survey here.

Regarding accessibility and inclusivity, it is promising to see that in 2023 over half of the organisations were led by people with a lived experience, showing a connection and shared story of the causes they are supporting. Meeting the needs of a diverse audience was a priority for 45% of respondents. 58% are fair at creating accessible and engaging content. However, 14% were worried about excluding people from digital services. In our experience, this needs to be considered throughout the design process, meeting WCAG standards and prioritising based on severity, frequency and primary user journeys.

In 2023, 59% of charities wanted to improve digital fundraising. In response to this, Pixeled Eggs CEO and Founder Sepas Seraj will publish our best practice tips on boosting donations through your website.

79% of charities saw improving their website, digital presence or social media as the greatest priority. In particular, 39% were finding their website challenging. Importantly this doesn’t mean that a project has to start with a redesign or development and be approached by an adequate support and maintenance offering. Making user-centric enhancements and features, understanding pain points through UX/UI audits, content optimisation workshops and UX research. If you’d like to explore your options on whether improvements can be made to your existing website or if a focused redevelopment project is more efficient, we’d be happy to have an informative and supportive discussion.

When it comes to funding, 46% of causes relied on grants from funders to cover digital costs. However, in comparison to those looking to improve their digital presence, only 21% of organisations had funding for developing their websites.

Additionally, only 5% were able to secure funding for user research. We’ve got an upcoming blog on Zoe Amar Digital discussing precisely this, the stages and benefits of user research and how to approach it as an investment with long-term time and money savings. Promisingly, with equality, diversity, and inclusion in mind, over 54% said that development was informed by user research in diverse communities.

These trends help us understand the charity and social sector, aligning our insights and common learnings. We look forward to 2024, the changing trends, and how we can support charities in improving and closing the digital skills gaps.

Through our partnership, we hope to increase awareness of sustainable and inclusive/accessible design. Reflecting on the previous year’s results and the need to improve websites, we look forward to providing guidance and support to the sector to make this a reality.

Taking part in this year’s survey

Share your experiences, challenges and successes as part of this year’s Charity Digital Skills Survey.

There is a chance to win £500 in unrestricted funding for five eligible organisations. The survey closes at midnight on Friday, 26 April.
Find out more and take part here.

"As co-author of The Charity Digital Skills Report, I'm thrilled that Pixeled Eggs is partnering with us for the 2024 edition. Their purpose-driven approach to creating exceptional digital solutions perfectly aligns with our mission to foster digital excellence in the charity sector. By leveraging Pixeled Eggs' expertise, charities can unlock their digital potential, amplify their impact, and drive meaningful change. Together, we can empower charities to thrive in the digital age."

Zoe Amar, Co-author of the Charity Digital Skills Report.