As a pastor or leader in the church, I would imagine you have a vision for your church. In fact, you may have several visions – like how the church should be run, what outreach should be, what the children’s ministry should be like, etc. But have you ever thought about having a vision for your website?
Unfortunately, many times a website is put up and forgotten. It’s left with old information on it and gives the appearance that “no one is home” so to speak. Maybe the person who created the website got busy or left the church. So, now what?
A website has such potential for your church! But like anything else, if it’s not planned out and is without a vision, it won’t live up to its potential. Let’s look at some of the possibilities a church website has to offer.
- It can connect the pastor and other leaders with the congregation, thereby forming a stronger bond and sense a unity – you can do this through writing a blog, sharing your thoughts on it and inviting discussion or having the ability to share prayer requests on the site
- It makes it easy to share information the congregation needs during the week, such as any updates on meetings and services, which will hopefully encourage participation
- It can allow for online donations, making it easy for people who didn’t get to give their tithe on Sunday to still give
- It can make a potential visitor feel welcomed – have a section for those who are new to the church, giving them as much information as possible so that they feel more comfortable when they attend in person
- Allows for sermons to be downloaded and listened to – this is great for those who are away or who don’t attend your church yet – they can still hear the message
- Live streaming would allow for shut-ins, college students, or those away on vacation to still feel like they are a part of the service and congregation
- A website gives a central place to share information and pictures of events and ministries, which should increase interest and engagement
Those are just some of the ways that you can use your website to connect with your congregation and encourage new people to come to your church. Is your website doing those things? Take an inventory of the areas that are working well on your site already and those that need help. Then…
“Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it.” Habakkuk 2:2
Take some time to devote to writing down your vision for the website. A meeting of the leaders may help in this, as everyone has some different ideas of what they would like to see happen with the site. Listen to their thoughts and then come up with a common vision for the site. And as God directed, write it down. That way, it becomes clearer in your mind what the goals are, and it makes it easy to look back and see if the site is meeting your original goals.
Don’t make the mistake of thinking a website really isn’t all that important. The truth is, today with the increasing number of people using the internet to find information and do searches (and it’s not just the younger generation anymore), it’s becoming a necessity to have an attractive and effective website. And that will become all the more important as time goes on.
As with anything else, planning and being clear on your goals will increase the likelihood of them becoming a reality. Work with a web designer who understands the potential a church website has, and is willing to work with you to help your vision be realized. We’d love to help! You can contact us by email or phone at 1-800-615-8606