Church Websites On Purpose
6/20/2009 3:32 PM
Having an online presence for your ministry is more important today than ever before. As we all know, the Internet can be an amazing way to connect with people inside your community and to reach out to people outside of your community. The possibilities for what you do online are endless - from the very simple presentation information about times, dates, and locations, to the more complex and interactive features such as social networking, discussion boards, event registration, and podcasting.
As part of our job, the SnapShot Web Team looks at hundreds of ministry websites every week. Some are fantastic, others are mediocre, and to be honest, some are so scattered and disjointed that it almost hurts to look at them - having no website at all would be a better option. The most common thing that distinguishes the good from the bad and the ugly is purpose. Let us explain…
Before creating (or re-creating) your online presence you’ll want to make sure that you ask yourself this critical question: Why?
Why are you doing what you do with your website? What should the purpose of your website be? Is it simply to convey information or do you want it to be something more? Is it to grab people’s attention? Stir people’s emotions? Get people involved? Persuade people to take action? Is it to connect with those already involved in your ministry or to reach out to those who are not yet involved?
The reality is that if you don’t have a purpose for your website, your blog, or your facebook group – if you haven’t thought about why you are doing what you do – there’s a very good chance that you’ll end up with a scattered mess that doesn’t do anything all that well.
We considered mentioning a few examples of purposeless sites but it seemed a little too mean – you know who you are. Instead, We’ll mention one that has a clear and carefully thought out purpose. Take a look at www.themountslc.com and you’ll see what I mean. The purpose of this site is to push people to come to the weekly service. On the home page they have service times and directions. They have pictures of the service, a podcast of recent sermons, FAQs about what to expect at their service, and a blog to discuss recent topics. It’s beautiful.
Let’s join forces and rid the world of purposeless websites.