Does your church have a website? If not, why not? Here are 4 reasons that today more than ever, your church needs a website.
The Age of the Internet
People today rely on the Internet more than any other source when they are seeking information about something, someone, or some place and that includes churches. Gone are the days, for the most part, where you’d search the phonebook directory to find out about a church. The phonebook typically doesn’t give people enough information about what they are seeking in a church. The church’s website can give a comprehensive look at what the church’s doctrines are, what their mission statement is, what ministries they have, and what is offered for different age groups. The population is so transient today and new people are coming and going every day in the community where you live so it’s a great advantage to have your church’s information available at their fingertips and it’s essential to drawing new people to your church. Most people seek quick access to information like the church address, the times of services, and if they have children, whether there are Sunday school classes available. There is also an easy way to click a link on the website where it might say “Get Directions” and there you can have a link to a mapping website that will tell them exactly where your church is at.
A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Words
The saying that a picture is worth a thousand words is just as true today as in the day that this phrase was invented. Images draw people’s attention like a magnet. Sometimes what they see can make their decision as to whether they’ll attend the church or not simply by looking at the church building, the parking lot, the sanctuary and also seeing pictures of some of the church members and the activities they’re engaged in. At a quick glance, these images can show some of the activities of the church, what worship services are like, and how the people interact with one another and do it so much better than mere words can. People are attracted to images that show smiling faces, engaged people, and their participation in various activities. Pictures can show the website visitors more than words can even describe. They give a lot more details in an instant that paragraphs of information can. They might not have the patience to read everything on your website but they usually don’t hesitate to look at all the images.
Personal Stories Attract Visitors
When people visit your church’s website, if you have one, make sure to include stories about the power of God’s Spirit to work in the lives of people. These true, inspiring stories can give others hope that they too can overcome obstacles, scale strongholds, and have miraculous breakthroughs by the very power of God. Truth is much greater than fiction and these real-to-life testimonies can be very compelling and intriguing and create a desire in people to follow in their footsteps. Almost everyone can relate to God’s supernaturally working in people’s lives to conquer powerful addictions and change their lives for the better through the working of God’s Spirit. For every inspirational story of a changed life there is a much greater chance that someone who comes to your website might be in a similar situation and giving personal, true-life accounts may be just what they were looking for and that is hope.
FAQ is an abbreviation for “Frequently Asked Questions” and these can be questions about the times and days of services, the activities of certain ministries, whether the church is denominational or non-denominational, a place where there is a “Contact Us” form, and what the church’s beliefs are, whether they are contained in a statement of beliefs or by listing certain scriptures like Romans 10:9-13. It’s also a good idea to have links that provide names of staff with their pictures on them. It’s so much easier to see a friendly face when you want to contact someone than to give no names or pictures of the staff at all. Your website might even include a “Feedback” link where the visitors can make suggestions about the website to improve it and even a link to a Facebook or Twitter page for the church. If you have a YouTube or GodTube account for the church, sermons can be accessed easily through these sites so that visitors can see and hear some of the messages.
If your church doesn’t have a website and it might not be able to afford one, there are many free websites available on line. All you need to do is search “free websites” and you’ll get a great variety of sites to look at. They are so easy to create and set up these websites today that almost anyone can do it. Websites are a great idea because they give the visitors instant access to all the information that they’ll need to make an informed decision as to whether they want to visit your church. You might even have someone who is adept at writing in your church create a blog on a link on the homepage on the website and this will keep fresh content on the site and draw new visitors who might be searching for an answer to a question and they might be brought to your website because of that blog. SEO and web content searches can often bring unexpected visitors to your church’s website which is all the more reason for your church to have a website.