In today's digital landscape, having an effective website is no longer a mere suggestion for local churches but an essential part of ministry.
Since 2018, we have monitored the digital presence of churches in the City of London and the City of Westminster. As the COVID-19 pandemic drastically increased the relevance of digital engagement for churches, we also chose to assess the Site Health of these church's websites. We included them in our 2021 The State of The Digital Church Report.
Our findings reveal that while most churches in the Two Cities do have websites, there are still many ways in which the design, content, and functionality of these sites can be improved to better reach their local communities and achieve the Mission.
Here are three reasons why we believe that every church should invest in making its website the best it can be.
You probably know your church's history, beliefs, and values inside and out, but having a place to learn foundational information about your church will prove invaluable for newcomers, visitors, and potential members. Visitors can learn when and where your services hold, which programs may be of interest to them, and anything they need to know before attending, such as the names of church leaders, who serves on the ministry team, and where they can park their car.
You can outline your core beliefs, show people what to expect whether they choose to join church services in-person or online, and direct visitors to your social media accounts and YouTube channel.
Local churches are hubs of activity, and it's vital that everyone involved - including visitors and external groups who may use your church facilities during the week - can easily see what's happening and receive updates. A What's On Page and Community Calendar with updates and service times (that members can subscribe to on their personal devices) are essential features on any good church website.
And having this information online can save you time and money because you no longer have to print out as many flyers and bulletins or send out emails for every single activity.
From fundraisers to foodbanks, missions trips to clothes drives, as your church serves its local and international community, a website will allow you to illustrate your ministry (such as this church which supports the Hygiene Bank) and encourage church members to get involved. You can create a digital Prayer Wall to bring members together as they pray for each other and support each other in life's highs and lows.
Your church website is the first place visitors look to find information about your church and often where they make their first impression. It is where existing members learn about upcoming events and opportunities to serve, and your local community connects with you. It needs to be modern, relevant, and up-to-date.
We at the Digital Church Platform® know that not every church has the time or technical expertise to create or manage such a website, so we have created a CMS (content management system) module to help you get started. There’s no need for complicated church software because the CMS module eliminates the need to know anything about coding or web design. It provides everything you need to take your existing material and present it digitally to those who need it. It's easy to get started; simply contact us here.
To build a church community, you must meet people where they are - and many are on LinkedIn. Gain greater influence in your community by connecting with local leaders and influencers and showing them what your church is all about.
In this age we live in, it seemed for a long time that there was a space for everyone on the internet except Christians and the Church. However, to quote one of Ernest Hemingway’s characters “gradually then suddenly”, the presence of Christianity on the internet has exploded.
Advent is the season of expectation, preparation, and watchfulness as Christians prepare themselves to celebrate the coming or, in Latin, adventus of the Messiah and, of course, we look ahead to His second coming at the end of time.