We all know the importance of a great website, but unfortunately, it’s usually not very high on the priority list for most churches— let’s face it, most churches want a ‘set it and forget it’ website. Ten years ago, your website was more like a brochure that you updated once a year than it was a source of information, but those days have changed. More people than ever are visiting your church website and for most, what they see is the first impression they’ll have of your church! Here are 5 things I see all the time, that you probably don’t need!
1. A Home Page Slider
You see these everywhere! They usually bombard you with useless information and pictures— until you see something that might interest you, then you have to find a way to scroll back to the image that you like. Beyond that, there’s no clear message or call to action that you’re presented with. Most websites just do it because it’s part of the template their using, but you don’t need it! How do you fix it? One image, one call to action. That’s all you need.
2. Cheesy Stock Photography
Okay, if you have a stock photo or two on your site, I’m not going to give you to much grief… but too much stock photography doesn’t tell anyone about your church. People want to see a visual image of what it would be like to visit your church. If you have to, hire a pro, but make sure you have pictures of real people and a real place on your website!
3. Auto Play Videos
Video content is great, in fact you should absolutely have some on your website— but if people want to watch your video, they won’t mind clicking the play button. Choose a great looking thumbnail and let them click play on their own!
4. Missing Contact Information
If you don’t have a phone number, email address and physical address on your contact page— you could be turning people away. I see church websites all the time that only have a contact form and a physical address on it. Worse, sometimes the form goes to an address that isn’t monitored regularly. Make sure that when someone clicks the contact button, they can find the information they need right away.
5. Outdated Pictures and Information
If you can’t update the calendar on your homepage, you’d be better off not having one. If you’re pastor decided to grow a beard, make sure you get a new picture on your website. Remember— this is usually the first thing someone will see when they consider visiting your church. Make sure your website content is up to date and well maintained.
Is there something I’ve missed? Leave a comment below!