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4 mistakes to avoid in your online PTA, PTO, School, or Booster Club store

February 21, 2024

4 mistakes to avoid in your online PTA, PTO, School, or Booster Club store

When you’re building your online PTA, PTO, School, or Booster Club store, you know you want to be successful at engaging parents and bringing in fundraising dollars, but it can be hard to know where to start to get the job done.

It takes some careful planning and execution, but with a few tips and tricks, you can offer your school community a great online shopping experience.

Mistake #1: Making shopping and checkout hard

Your organization’s online store is the place parents will go to purchase items and memberships, make donations, and support their child’s  interests, so it has to be user-friendly and easy to navigate.

Think about how frustrated you get when you’re online shopping and the website is so hard to use and the things you want to buy are so hard to find that it feels like they don’t really want you to shop with them.

It’s the same with your PTA/PTO, School or Booster Club online store. 

Build your online store so that parents can find what they’re looking for quickly and can seamlessly complete the checkout process. To make things easy: 

  • Make sure items are sorted into product categories that are clear and easy-to-understand. For example, you will want different categories for spirit wear, memberships, event tickets, and donations and other fundraisers and fundraising products.
  • Sort the hottest or most important items to the top of your product collection so they appear first.
  • Use the correct image size for your products so pictures are consistent and look great in your store. 

Mistake #2: Not promoting your store

What good is having a great online store for your PTA, PTO, School, or Booster Club if no one knows about it?

Make sure you’re promoting your store through emails to your members and supporters, social media posts, and any collaborations with other organizations within your community.

Reaching the widest audience possible will help make your online store as successful as it can be. 

Increase your reach and fundraising potential by:

  • Partnering with local businesses or sponsors for creative collaborations your school community will love. Offer joint promotions or feature products/services from local businesses.
  • Offering promotions, exclusive discounts, or special perks to incentivize purchases and donations. Offering limited-time discounts is a great way to build buzz and get people excited to visit your online School, PTA, PTO, or Booster Club store.
  • Running virtual fundraisers or campaigns that encourage parents and the school community to make purchases through your online store. 

Mistake #3: Leaving out helpful or important information

Your online PTA, PTO, School, or Booster Club store gives you the perfect opportunity to make sure the school community understands the impact of their purchase.

Clearly communicating your store’s mission and goals, as well as how purchases or donations directly benefit the school community will help engage your supporters and build a strong connection with them.

When it comes to product pages, the more information you give about specific product details, delivery, and other relevant information, the more informed parents will be.

Mistake #4: Giving slow customer service 

If you’re not promptly responding to questions from parents or helping solve their problems using your store, it makes shopping your store even more difficult.

As it often happens, if one person is having trouble in your store and telling you about it, other people probably are too and are not telling you about it. Any feedback you get from parents that can be used to improve your store is super valuable. 

The keys to online PTA/PTO, Booster Club, and school store success

There’s no mystery about what you need to do to create a PTA, PTO, School, or Booster Club online store that engages parents and boosts your fundraising dollars. By making sure your store is an easy-to-find, stress-free shopping experience with helpful information throughout, you’ll delight parents and the school community.

If you’re willing to be open to feedback and suggestions on ways to improve your store from the people who use it most, you can create an exceptional customer experience that helps drive your fundraising efforts and benefits your school community for the long haul.