Make your church website reign supreme
Tuesday, October 24, 2017
Have you ever heard the phrase "content is king"? If so, you've probably dabbled in web development or Internet marketing. Basically, it means that you should focus on the information on your website rather than how trendy it looks.
Of course, presentation is important, but content can make or break the experience for your viewers. So let's talk about what you can do to improve it.
What is content?
Web content is anything that provides information to your viewers. This includes text, pictures, videos, buttons and anything else that's used to share something your viewers need to know.
It's important to provide the right content for your audience. In this case, your audience is most likely your members and potential visitors to your church.
Why should I care?
I've heard that a website is the "front door" of your church. It helps new folks determine whether to come on in or run for the hills. Your site should welcome and inform those people.
But don't forget your congregants! Keeping them informed is just as important as welcoming newcomers.
So, keep your audience in mind when you're deciding the content for your website. Even though you love that picture of your puppy, it doesn't belong on your church site — unless you have some kind of dog ministry (in which case I need you to contact me immediately and send me all the pictures because that sounds amazing).
What can I do?
If you find that you have a mess after evaluating the content of your church’s website, don’t fret. These tips can help improve your site.
- Send a clear message to your intended audience — What are your congregants like? What's important to your community? Use clear, conversational language so visitors don't feel intimidated. Make sure the content on your site is relevant to your viewers. And, of course, you want your website to be clean, user-friendly and easy to navigate.
- Keep your information up-to-date — One of the biggest issues I've seen is incorrect or missing information. Does your website include updated contact information for the church office? Did you remember to list service times and locations? Be sure to update those when they change.
- Give people a chance to get involved — There are plenty of awesome people in your church and community who want to get involved. Let them know what they can do on your site. Include calls to action for upcoming mission trips, volunteer opportunities and open leadership roles. Show how your church connects with the community.
- Use photos that represent your church — Your website should be more than words. Include intriguing pictures that tell "who" your church is. This doesn't just mean a photo of your church building — that's what's on the outside. Make it personable, and make it an accurate representation of your church body. Your site should "feel" like your church.
- Include an "about us" page — It may seem outdated, but I love when churches include a page that tells me about the church, its mission and the staff. This is a good way for people to get to know some folks before they come to your church. It's also great to include appropriate pictures of the staff (with their permission, of course).
Do you have any tips that have helped improve your church's website? Does your church have a dog ministry? Tell us about it in the comments!
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