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9 Easy Steps to Help Build a Church Website

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Did you know that 80 percent of new church visitors will look at a church’s website before they decide to step inside?

What if your church doesn’t have a website at all? That means you could be missing out on tons of new members!

If you don’t have a website for your church yet, now’s the time to create one. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to do so, either.

Read on for some tips that will make it easy for you to build a church website that looks great and functions well.

1. Choose a Hosting Platform

The first step to take when you’re looking to build a church website (or any website, for that matter) is to choose a hosting platform.

There are lots of different companies that will host your website, and many of them have very affordable plans.

You’ll probably be fine using shared hosting (this means you’ll share a server with several other websites), at least in the beginning. Shared hosting is more affordable but still provides you with all the tools you need to get started.

2. Choose a Domain Name

Once you choose a hosting platform, you’ll also need to choose the domain name for your website. This is the address people will type in to get to the site.

Choose a domain name that is short, simple, and easy to remember. Keep in mind that the domain name is part of your church’s overall branding strategy, so it ought to make sense and line up with the rest of your marketing efforts.

Be wary of using abbreviations in your domain name, too. Abbreviations might make sense to you as a long-time attendee or employee of your church. Newcomers might not understand and be put off by them, though.

3. Choose a Theme

Once you’ve set up hosting and chosen a domain name for your church website, the next step is to pick a theme for it.

The theme will determine the layout and basic appearance of your website, so you need to choose with care and find one that meets all your needs.

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There are lots of church-friendly themes available these days, and many of them are free or come at a low cost. Do a little research to see what appeals to you and what fits into your website-building budget.

4. Use the Right Plugins 

There are also a lot of plugins that you can download that will help you with various church-related tasks. Some of the best plugins you might want to try include:

  • Sermon Manager: This allows you to publish sermons online
  • Give: This provides members with an easy way to give back to your church
  • Events Calendar: This will help you keep members informed about various activities
  • Series Engine: This allows you to share videos online

You’ll also want to install some basic website plugins that every business should use. This includes Yoast SEO and Google Analytics.

5. Customize Your Website

At this point, you can start customizing your website. Customization can be fun, but it can also be overwhelming. To avoid getting burned out, start by creating a basic framework for your website.

Make sure you include all the essential pages a church needs. This includes the following:

  • A homepage
  • A calendar page
  • An “About Us” page
  • A welcome page for new visitors
  • A “Meet the Staff” page
  • A contact page

Once you have these basic pages in place, you can play around with other additions and make them a bit more stylistic.

6. Integrate with Social Media

When your website looks good and has all the basics in place, it’s time to launch it.

After the site has been launched, start promoting it on your church’s social media platforms (and if you’re not on social media yet, create those profiles as soon as possible).

Encourage members to share the news about the website to the friends, family, and other followers. This is an easy and free way to inform more people about your church and what you have to offer.

7. Optimize Your Website

It’s not enough to build a church website. You have to continue optimizing that website so that people can find it online. This is known as SEO, or search engine optimization.

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Having the Yoast SEO plugin on your website will make it easier for you to optimize your pages. You’ll need to do some additional research, though, to figure out which keywords to use and how to make sure as many people are seeing your website as possible.

8. Update Regularly

Make sure you’re updating the content on your website on a regular basis, too.

Add new sermons every week as soon as you can after they’re delivered. Add a blog and publish posts throughout the week to keep members engaged and help new people find your website. Both of these practices are great for SEO as well.

Remember, people are going to be much more interested in attending your church if your website is up-to-date and has interesting content available to them.

9. Make it Mobile-Friendly

In 2019, it’s essential for church websites to be mobile-friendly. Many people use smartphones and tablets when searching for local businesses (including churches) these days.

If people can’t access your church’s website from their phone or tablet, they’ll likely look elsewhere for a church that has a website that’s better optimized and easier to navigate.

That might not seem fair, but that’s the way the internet works these days.

Time to Build a Church Website!

It’s understandable if you’ve been feeling daunted by the idea of trying to build a church website.

Creating something from scratch, especially something that you’ve never created before, is an intimidating task. The good news, though, is that you don’t have to do it alone.

Hopefully, these tips have given you some guidance and showed you that it’s possible for you to create a website, even without a lot of knowledge or experience.

Do you want to learn more about building and designing a website? If so, visit the Websites section of our site today for more advice.