Once your church website is set up, it can begin attracting visitors all on its own. But unless a lot of people know who you are and what you do, typically, this doesn’t happen. Some work must go into spreading the word.
So, it’s important to create awareness for your congregation and website through ongoing promotion and word of mouth.
Here are several steps you can take to promote your church website for growth and improvement.
Mention Your Website During Your Service & Encourage Word Of Mouth
The easiest way to spread the word about your new website is to mention it during your services and direct your congregation members to visit it. This is something you must commit to doing on an ongoing basis, but once it’s part of your regular routine, it will become like second nature.
But you must give your congregation a compelling reason to visit your website, or they may ignore your prompt to do so.
For instance, you could have your sermons published on your website, and then let your attendees know they can go to the website for more great messages, articles, and stories that will encourage them and help them to grow in their relationship with God.
Websites are great tools for storing and archiving information. So, another incentive to your visitors for visiting your website might be the ability to see all upcoming events. If you always have lots going on at your church, listing these might be a good way to spread awareness and encourage more attendance.
For some people, the ability to give online is appealing, so let your congregation know they can give online.
If you’re looking to boost word of mouth, you might also consider creating content for your website that’s directed at new visitors. Members in your congregation who believe strongly in evangelism will begin directing their non-believing friends to check out the content that’s been designed specifically for them.
Also note: You can put your website address on your projector screens, if you’re using them at your church.
Use Content Marketing And Guest Post On Church Related Websites
Content marketing is a great way to attract more visitors to your website long term.
You’ll need to think carefully about the kind of content you publish, whether it’s on community outreach, causes worth supporting, humanitarian efforts, the importance of spirituality, or otherwise. After all, you’re probably looking to attract people who are new to church.
Here are several sites accepting guest posts:
- Good Church Website: You can build your credibility and authority among believers by guest posting on Good Church Website, which is accepting content on church websites, using social media for ministry, or church communications. If you’re a forward-looking church with a tech focus, this might be a good place to contribute.
- OurChurch.com: A website focused on providing web design, hosting, and SEO for churches. If you’ve ever thought about writing how technology can be used to advance your church or ministries, this is a great place to pitch your ideas to.
- Premier Christian: Premier Christian is a website dedicated to providing content on a variety of topics for Christians and exists to promote their magazine. Their requirements for guest posters aren’t stringent. Simply submit an outline for your idea that doesn’t exceed 200 – 300 words and wait for the go-ahead. Also, get acquainted with the kind of content that’s on their website before submitting.
There are plenty of other sites out there accepting guest posts, so it’s mostly just a matter of finding them and determining a viable angle for your content piece.
Local SEO For Churches & Places Of Worship
Local SEO is a good way to increase organic search traffic to your website.
There’s a lot of competition worldwide – but less competition locally. By positioning your church as a local “business”, you can attract more of your target audience while still reaching more people on a global level.
Here are several things you can do to optimize your website:
- Set up your profiles. As any other local business would, it’s important to claim your profiles on known directories and review sites like Google Places, Bing Local, Yahoo Local, Yelp, YellowPages, and so forth. You’ll likely need to verify your listing with each of these places, but it can be immensely beneficial for your site’s SEO, so be patient with the process and get it done.
- Solicit reviews. Do you have any congregation members who speak highly of you and your church? Get them to write reviews for you on the online directories and review sites already mentioned. Positive reviews are a form of validation and can help you attract new visitors to your website and church services.
- Include your location and contact information on your website This is a critical step that should be undertaken by any local organization or business. Your address and contact information should be on every page of your website, making it easy for visitors to find you and get in touch with you.
- Use locally focused keywords. If you’re in Boston, for instance, then try keywords like “Boston church”, “Boston evangelical church (or whatever denomination you belong to)”, “church services in Boston”, and so on. Locally focused keywords can help people in your community discover and learn more about you.
Create A Church App For Your Website
A website is a great starting point. But today, many people conduct searches and access their favorite content on their mobile devices. Not having an app for your church is a marked disadvantage, particularly if you’re looking to attract and engage more millennials.
Creating an app will allow your congregation members to grow in God, whenever and wherever. You can share your messages, stories, and articles with them. You can provide them with all the latest information on upcoming events and services. Additionally, you could provide exclusive content or incentives for using your app.
For instance, if you have a coffeehouse set up in your church, you could offer a free coffee. Or, if you have a bookstore, you could offer a discount code or gift card to purchase a resource of their choosing.
Another advantage of having an app is that you can ask for donations or allow your congregation to give right from their phone. It’s always a good idea to provide payment options to your attendees, especially these days.
Finally, an app is a good way to spread the gospel. Most people have a smartphone, which means your potential reach is near unlimited. As you look to evangelize and share your message with more people, having an app available in popular app stores and marketplaces allows anyone to access a message that can change their lives.
Marketing For Churches Conclusion
Don’t focus on the “what” as much as the “why”.
Your objective should always be to spread the good news through whatever means possible, whether it’s your website or app.
As you concentrate on your central purpose, it will give meaning to the activity. If you see every step you take as an opportunity to reach someone new with an important message, you’ll be more likely to commit to the process and follow through with it.
Best of luck promoting your church website.