When people visit your website, or your listing page on KJV Churches, what are they trying to find? During my ongoing project to find every Independent Baptist Church in America, I have viewed literally thousands of church sites, some of them excellent, and many of them absolutely abhorrent. What makes them good? Here’s a few Dos and Don’ts of websites.
- Link to your Statement of Faith – People want to know what you believe
- Provide a simple address to your church – Not everyone needs detailed directions
- List your Pastor’s name – Believe it or not, sometimes it is hard to find the name of the pastor!
- List an email address – While a contact form is helpful, an actual email contact is much more useful
- Keep the site navigation simple – Even the biggest churches can keep their websites small and user-friendly
- Use Flash – Flash is not only a HUGE security risk, but it’s also useless for most mobile devices
- Use glitter graphics – This should be self-explanatory
- Force every link to open in a new page – This is a huge aggravation; people want to move effortlessly through your site
- USE AUTOPLAY MUSIC – The only internet crime worthy of capital punishment; offer to play music, but don’t start it without permission!
- Try to cram a ton of content onto one page – Unless you’re still using a website from last century, web pages are limitless: spread out the content
There are tons of ways to make a website these days, and many of them are free. Consider using a Content Management System (CMS) like Joomla!, Drupal, or WordPress (KJV Churches runs on WordPress). These CMS options have tons of free extensions/plugins and themes to make your site useful and look great, and there are many resources on the internet to help you develop a very user-friendly website. Web development, at least for a small church site, is really quite simple, and you really can do it on your own if you invest a little time into learning.