Content That Converts: Must-Haves for Your Church’s Website
When you set out to make your church's website, there's a lot at stake; you want to inspire people, to show them that it can be a meaningful part of your worship community. From graphics to videos to information about worship services, a well-done church website can make the difference between someone choosing to join your church or choosing to go visit another webpage. Here are some must-haves for your church's website to help content that converts potential parishioners.
When it comes to maintaining and growing engagement in any organization, a blog is key. And if you choose to create a blog, there are plenty of possible topics to include. One important thing to include is information on the life of the church. Are parishioners volunteering in the community? Has your church band grown? Another important topic is that of faith itself. You might want to ask a worship leader to write an opinion piece on the importance of religious community or write a close reading of part of a religious text. While variety is important, so is organization. By dividing blog posts into categories, you ensure that visitors will be able to read what they're looking for.
Videos are an incredibly valuable engagement tool. It's hard to capture the energy of a worship service in text, but a video can give potential new parishioners a virtual tour. Videos have been shown to increase time spent on a website by 88%. Thus, if you're looking for more online engagement in hopes of it translating to real-time engagement, this is an avenue worth pursuing. When planning video content, filming church musicians or an especially moving part of a service is a good idea. If your church is on beautiful grounds, a brief video of the grounds may also work to draw in new members. Of course, ensuring your video is well done is paramount. You may not need to hire a professional but making sure the person shooting and editing has some experience will go a long way toward adding quality content to your site. This content, in turn, may inspire curious people to come to a service.
Biographies of Worship Leaders and Church Staff
Much of what makes a church community is its group of worship leaders. And for those who may be anxious about seeking a religious community, a bio may help to humanize worship leaders. While what exactly you choose to include in the bio will depend on your church's specific mission, it's generally good to include a photo, information on the leader's background, and some personal info, too. Including information on why the leaders went into ministry may help potential parishioners get a sense of the general church climate as well.
Testimonials are a tricky area to navigate. On one hand, a church website that places testimonials at the forefront of a webpage runs the risk of looking more like an advertisement site. On the other hand, including sincere testimonials will show, in parishioners' own words, how the church has positively impacted them. One thing to consider when adding testimonials is ensuring they are diverse, you'll want those that appeal to both believers and current non-believers. This way, you appeal to many types of new members, both those simply looking for a new worship community and those tentatively trying to connect with their faith.
Photos From Church Events
Photos are an important part of any website. But when you create a church website, it's important to include meaningful photos. While photos of the church itself are important, so are photos of events. A photo of an annual church picnic will help showcase the church community, while pictures of members volunteering in the community will show that the church as a whole has a giving spirit. Including a variety of different photos is ideal, as it will illustrate how your church community supports not only its own members but also the community at large.
The point of contact information on a website for your church is to make it as easy as possible for potential new members to come to visit or get in touch. Therefore, make sure you include as much information as possible. Include times of worship services, the church location, and phone numbers/email addresses for contact. Also, if any worship leaders include office hours, include these as well--office hours are a great way for people to connect with your community if going to a service might seem overwhelming at first.
Community outreach is both beneficial to a church but also to the community. There are many different options that can be chosen such as sponsoring a school or a classroom, family movie night, or hosting a concert. Let the community outreach section of your website showcase any past events or organizations you have sponsored. This way, people can automatically get a feel for if your church is perfect for their event or not. This also lets the community know that you’re a part of them and not a separate entity.
A church website is more than just an eye-catching design and some inspirational photos. By thinking of your site as an extension of your ministry, you will be able to reach believers and non-believers alike. And in time, they may just find a spiritual home with you.
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