The Aunt Bertha Blog

Why You Should Log In

While we don’t require users to login to search on Aunt Bertha, we think users - be they a person seeking help, helping others, or providing services -  absolutely should log in (but we are admittedly biased). Give us a quick moment to try to explain.

Why Users Should Log In:

Individual users who log in to get special features that are unlocked with a free account.

  1. Save your favorite programs - Skip the search for your favorite programs each time you come in.  Save your favorites and organize them into folders for quick access.
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    Figure 1.  Make Folders of Your Favorite Programs

  2. Manage referrals - View and manage the status of referrals that you have made for yourself or on behalf of someone else.
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    Figure 2.  Manage Referrals That You Make

  3. View analytics -  View a detailed search history and get special reports on programs and searches in your area.  With individual reporting you can get answers to questions like: What new programs have been added to my area? Or what search did I do to find that program I liked?
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Figure 3.  Individual Search History

In order to access your new reporting and analytics tools, first you have to create an account and log into Aunt Bertha.  If you haven’t created an account yet, you can do so here.

You will have to complete some searches in order to have a search history, but make sure you log in each time in order to keep your data current.  

Once you’ve built some history, you can find your reports in the navigation at the top of the page. Just click the link called “Analytics".

If you manage a program that helps others in need, you should take a look at how Aunt Bertha helps direct service providers, too!


Why We Don’t Require You to Login

We know that people are often searching on Aunt Bertha at their most vulnerable times.  It is in these moments that our mission to remove every barrier between the person in need and the program that can help them is most important.

In an effort to minimize or remove all barriers, we never require a login to access the Aunt Bertha program search.

This is not a “business first” decision, it is a “seeker first” decision. By not requiring a login, we assure that people in need can:

  1. Find help fast. A zip code is all you need to find programs of support.
  2. See all the key info. No program information is hidden to a user who is not logged in.
  3. Find help barrier free.  Creating an account or remembering your password are barriers - we recognize that and have removed them as a requirement to find help.
  4. Search in private. Search for sensitive information without the feeling that your searches are tracked or your privacy is lost. 

So while there are benefits to logging in, we don’t force it. We believe that by not requiring a login we are living our value of putting seekers first, and we hope you agree!


New Free Reports Available to Direct Service Providers

Aunt Bertha recently launched free interactive reports available to direct service providers who claim their program listings. These visually appealing, easy-to-share reports enable providers to learn from real-time data and answer questions like:

  • How often were my programs returned in search results (indicating need for services)?
  • How many people viewed my programs (indicating need for services)
  • What actions did visitors take to demonstrate interest in my programs? (i.e. clicked on my website, started a referral, printed information about my services, etc.)
  • What did these searches look like over time, and what does this tell me about changing interest in or need for my services

How to see your report:

1. If you haven't yet claimed your program, go to to quickly find and take ownership of your programs. If you are not yet in our system, just suggest your program to us and then claim once you have been added.

2. Once you have claimed and logged in, go to the "Analytics" tab at the top of the page.

3. Click on "Program Activity Report" to see your new reporting dashboard. If you have more than one claimed program, you can select it by using the "Filters" bar at the top of the report.

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Figure 1.  Claimed Program Report

If you want to share this report, you can print the page or click on individual elements of the report to download a CSV file of the data. 

This report might be a great addition to your next board meeting, or an addendum to the next grant proposal you submit! 

Do you have feedback on or ideas about other reports that could be useful? Email and let us know your thoughts.

Remind me, why is claiming my programs important?

Claiming your programs gives you a better way to connect your social services with the people who need your assistance. In addition to being able to edit and manage key content that is displayed about your program, claimed programs are also able to manage referrals and to access the new reports described above. Appointment scheduling functionality and other exciting free features will also be launching in Fall 2017. If you have any questions about claiming, email us at and we will help you through the process. Thank you! 

Data On The Need for Social Program Diversity

I was recently asked why Aunt Bertha places such a high value in having a depth and breadth of free and reduced cost agencies listed in our database.  “Don’t people just need to know 10-20 really good resources they can send patients to if they have complex social needs?”

The short answer is: No. Data repeatedly shows that a small number of programs, even really good programs, do not meet the diverse needs of an entire community.

One of the great things about Aunt Bertha is that with over 25,000 users conducting over 135,000 searches and referrals every month we get a unique view of needs and search patterns throughout the country.   This real, demand side data tells an interesting story.

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We took a look at one of our client’s activity in the Washington DC area and found that in February alone 716 unique programs were clicked on or referred to and the top 20 programs only accounted for 35% of total activity.  

Of the organizations I speak with I have heard two consistent themes that may explain this:

  1. There is diversity in the population they serve which could have wide variation in income, age, and other factors that create a variety of social needs.  So a senior with mobility problems will have needs that differ from a single mom that is struggling financially.  
  2. Healthcare organizations that increasingly serve people from a wider and wider geographic area.  Many hospitals see patients not only from multiple zip codes or counties, but in some cases from multiple states.

Some medical conditions and treatments are common, but each patient is unique which is why there is a diversity of treatments, medications and specialists available.

DataTeam.jpgNot all people who need social assistance will be able to be served appropriately by the same programs. For this exact reason, Aunt Bertha has invested heavily in our data operations and will continue to do so. If we list a program that only a few people get that help from every year - it’s worth knowing about that program and it’s worth listing.

We’re constantly forming partnerships with key social program agencies in your community and have technology and strategies to support this.  Reach out to us to find out more about how we can help you help the clients you serve.

Request a demo ›

Topics: data need-based programs social programs

Improved Search Filters Make Finding the Right Program Easier

Our team at Aunt Bertha is creating much more than just the most comprehensive social services directory in the United States. We are committed to our mission of actually connecting people in need and the programs that serve them.

One of the ways we do this is by designing product features that bring our users closer to finding programs that are the best match for their needs. We recently re-designed the location, look and feel of our search filters with the goal of making it easier to narrow in on the right programs that are available at the right times and fit with an individual's personal situation and income level.

We moved the filters up to the top of the search results, so that they are more obvious to our users. We also separated the filters into three tabs based on the kind of content they focus on.

These three tabs include:

  • Program Filters: Details about a program
    • Includes hours that a program operates, whether it is free or reduced cost, and any specific languages a program supports

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  • Personal Filters: Details about who a program serves
    • These filters change based on your search -- what programs we found for you and who those programs serve. For example, below is a search for "emergency food," in Austin, TX. We found some programs that specifically serve veterans and families with young children, so we added those filters to the Personal Filters list. Filtering by both would show you any programs that specialize in serving either group.

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  • Income Eligibility: Asks for household income and size to narrow down programs that are based on specific income qualifications

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You may be wondering, how does Aunt Bertha know enough information about programs to create these filters?

The answer is twofold: We do this through the hard work of rigorous data collection, combined with the engagement of providers claiming* and updating their program listings.

Both of these approaches allow us to tag programs with increasing specificity based on who they serve and how they deliver services. Our goal is to continue to improve our tagging and partnerships with providers so that users know exactly which services are a good fit for them, and spend significantly less time hitting dead ends.

*If you are a provider of a free or reduced cost social service, we want to talk with you and help you claim your listing! Email for more information.

Topics: access to social services