Posted on February 15, 2019 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Does your church accept tithes and donations through digital forms? Is it in the church plans to use limitless opportunities offered through the internet to connect with the congregation? Ministry websites are great for reaching a wider audience but church apps offer an extra level of convenience. Today, more than 77% of adults in the U.S. have smartphones and the use of mobile apps is steadily increasing. For that reason, now might be an ideal time to have a church app in your 2019 digital plan.
Even with the rise of responsive designs, accessing ministry websites on a mobile device is still not as easy as it is on a desktop. Church apps offer a way to bridge that gap, ensuring most members have a fantastic experience browsing through your digital content. A good church app is welcoming and engaging, enabling an audience to view prayer requests, videos, calendars, and other content quickly.
Easy To Use Features
In the past, both the administrators and users had to go through a steep learning curve just to be able to use a church app efficiently. Since the features are organized better today, it’s easy to setup and use most apps. As a result, members of the congregation are likely to be more engaged with the ministry.
When church apps were first available, they were too expensive and often viewed as a luxury to only be enjoyed by big, wealthy churches. In most cases, a custom app would cost a church hundreds of thousands of dollars, but now the price is much more budget-friendly. One indication of this is that some packages require a setup fee of $199 and a maintenance fee of $49.
Ministry websites are essential, but all churches need to consider having a church app as well since it offers certain advantages. With it, you bring members closer together and make it more convenient for them to reach one another.
Posted on February 4, 2019 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Hosting an event at the church is an excellent way to not only attract new members but it also encourages existing ones to attend the services more often. While planning the events can be straightforward, it isn’t always easy getting people to attend. Fortunately, ministries can leverage the reach of church websites and social media to boost attendance for these events. Here’s how to go about it.
Notify Your Audience
One option when creating an event is to share all the necessary details on Facebook. Be sure to include the date, time, location, and update it frequently in case there are any changes with the plan. Additionally, the audience might ask questions and these should be answered promptly as it improves engagement.
Ministries don’t just use social media to inform people about their upcoming events; they use their church websites as well. On the home page, place a noticeable banner there for the event that leads to a different page where readers can learn more about it. Also, adding share buttons make it easy for an audience to help spread the word.
Use Compelling Stories
Most people want to know what value an event will add to their lives before going out of their way to attend. Therefore, post pictures and videos that trigger past attendees to reminisce about previous events while compelling any potential visitor to go for the first time. Testimonies and stories from the people who attended past events are typically effective for attracting new visitors.
Also, make sure you answer some questions that visitors might ask such as what the church events are usually about and how it benefits them. Spreading the word about church events used to be a costly and tiresome process but with the power of social media, it can be inexpensive and easy. Encourage the congregation to help you inform others about future events by sharing your posts.
Posted on January 25, 2019 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Some ministries believe their online presence is great as long as they have a website and a few social media accounts. But that is certainly far from the truth compared to the actual work it takes to establish a good internet presence for your church. An excellent online ministry strategy involves the creation of relevant content, tracking, placement of ads, and more. The following tips ensure your ministry is likely to have a successful year.
Church Website Design
With so many churches having an online strategy now, a simple website is no longer adequate. You need to utilize a superior church website design that functions beautifully and presents readers with helpful information. In most cases, a fancy website won’t attract many visitors as it takes the use of SEO tactics to make the website better. Brand the website using names, logos, and pictures that are relevant to your ministry.
Consistent branding gives people a way of identifying you easily and you need to use SEO content to attract more visitors. When generating content, you want the sort of content your target audience will find useful. Also, your church website design should be uniform across the board and the website must be responsive on all devices.
How will you know whether or not your online strategy is working if you don’t measure the performance? Luckily, there are countless analytics tools that you can use to your advantage. By using analytics tools with your website, you’ll accurately keep track of traffic and create sound strategies for improvement in the process.
Aside from that, there are also tracking tools for social media and you should put them to use as well. With digital tools increasingly gaining an advantage over traditional communication methods, the need for your ministry to have an online strategy will only become more vital. Keep your website and social media accounts up-to-date with the latest information and employ ads to have a greater reach!
Posted on January 16, 2019 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Hurricanes, winter storms, and other harsh weather conditions are a part of nature. But, that doesn't mean your congregation has to suffer every time bad weather strikes. With good plans and the tools that technology has to offer, it’s possible to minimize the confusion while maximizing safety when the weather is unfavorable. Here are a few strategies for communicating with your congregation during weather-related emergencies.
Create A Plan & Share It
Over 40% of all small organizations in the U.S., including churches, lack a plan for what action should be taken when there’s a weather emergency. If your church contributes to this statistic, now is a great time to create a plan. If you check the ministry websites of top churches, you might find weather response plans and these could serve as ideas for creating your own plan.
Since a plan is often not enough, you should explain the details so everyone knows the actions to be taken. Include as much information as possible, such as what channels to use, who to contact, and whether or not the church will be closed during such emergencies. Make sure you keep the information updated, especially with regards to weather forecasts.
Technology is a great tool to have at your disposal when dealing with extreme weather. From phone calls and text messages to emails and ministry websites, the options for reaching church members are endless. If you need to send the same message to many people at the same time, texting can be very helpful. These days, you could even do real-time updates using outlets like Facebook and YouTube.
Adverse weather conditions may cause some forms of communication to break down so always have an alternate plan for members to use in case that happens. Inclement weather will likely halt your services for the day, but does it have to diminish the engagement you have with members? Creating and sharing a weather plan with your congregation not only keeps your ministry active but it also ensures everyone remains safe.
Posted on January 2, 2019 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Every week, the pastor and worship teams spend a significant portion of their week preparing for the service on Sunday. That day, each party only has about an hour to pour out their soul to the congregation. After that, the sermon is often forgotten about unless it is recorded.
Live recordings are beneficial to the ministry as they provide a way to preserve services. With the convenient storage that church websites offer, church members can revisit a particular point in the sermon they didn’t understand when the sermon was being delivered. Here are a few other benefits.
Work On Improving Issues
When you record services, those leading the worship can go back and watch so they easily notice the areas where improvement is needed. Perhaps members of the choir should harmonize better during songs or the pastor isn’t using adequate body language to get the message across. These are just some of the issues that can be solved with recording services.
Correct Errors With Constructive Criticism
Many people get irritated when others say they’re doing something wrong and usually continue to think their way is correct. For instance, if one of the choir members is going off key on some songs, they might be upset when you point that out to them after the service.
When you have a recording, you can prove it to them and work together as a team to come up with ways to solve the problem. You could listen to the best parts and praise each other while discussing what to uphold and what to change.
Recording a church service not only helps to reveal issues and highlight opportunities for growth but it also captures moments worth revisiting. Furthermore, many ministries are using church websites to share memorable services and this works remarkably well for spreading the Gospel. If you haven’t recorded your services, consider it in the near future so your ministry improves every year and attracts more potential members.
Posted on December 24, 2018 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
As a church leader, you likely have many financial tasks to handle from approving expenses to reimbursing your staff and collecting the receipts. In most churches, leaders are wondering how to ease the workload and simplify the process. Fortunately, technology is transforming how finances are recorded and you could benefit significantly from the tools it has to offer. The following tips will help you manage your ministry’s expenses better.
Like ministry websites, mobile apps offer your church a convenient and reliable means of communication, allowing members to contact one another from anywhere and at any time. When volunteers are on a mission, you can track their transactions in real time and approve or decline them without delay. As a result, this efficiency goes a long way towards saving money.
If you have ever asked volunteers to use their own money with a promise to refund it later, then you probably know how inefficient that can be and it puts a strain on their finances. Credit cards might seem like a good option but they have issues as well such as missed payments, fees, and the potential for some users to abuse them. The best solution would be to use prepaid cards and monitor the expenses closely with a mobile app.
Having to use letters, text messages, and other conventional methods of communication not only consumes time but it can also cost more than using modern methods. If you have a general message you want to relay to members, post it on the ministry website and keep encouraging your congregation to follow the website for updates.
Additionally, consider bringing a copy of your expenses to one place using cloud-based financial integration software. These tools offer a quick and reliable means of controlling your church finances and since they’re cloud-based, the church saves time and money!
Posted on December 12, 2018 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
A church may attract many visitors on Sunday but if it doesn’t have a system in place for converting new attendees into members, the congregation might remain relatively small. When growing a congregation, the focus should be more on engagement rather than increasing attendance numbers. Assimilation is one of the best strategies in that regard and is often forgotten about. Here is how to grow your congregation through member assimilation.
Obviously, you need to get people to visit your church before you start assimilating them. Some ministries do that by publishing targeting posts on church websites and social media or ask members to invite their friends.
On a Sunday service, make sure you have greeters give new visitors a warm welcome and answer any questions as thorough as possible. Also, consider collecting the contact details of visitors and offer them a welcome packet to help them learn more about your ministry after they leave.
In most cases, visitors stay isn’t solely due to them being given a warm welcome but also because the church goes above and beyond. Therefore, after the service, ask if they can stay for a few minutes and show a genuine interest in getting to know them. Discuss their interests and try connecting them with their neighbors or suggest that they fellowship together.
Whether you’re asking a visitor to join the choir or to fellowship with their neighbors, never rush them into making a decision. Instead, allow the visitor to move at their own pace and introduce them to people they can reach out to when they need assistance.
Once visitors have transitioned into active members, continue to engage them by delegating important tasks that they enjoy. Some tasks to consider include teaching a class, organizing mission trips, and heading the choir. Members require varying amounts of time to assimilate and it’s up to the church to study each member and take care of them appropriately. Church websites, social media platforms, and prayer groups are just a few outlets you can use to grow your congregation.
Posted on December 4, 2018 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
As much as the Christmas season is a time to be merry and connect with each other, it also involves tiresome activities such as buying gifts and putting up decorations. Throughout December, many church leaders have to juggle tasks and this leaves them feeling exhausted. But does it have to be that way? Below are a few strategies you can use to reduce your workload and stress.
Seek Assistance From A Professional
Are you looking to change your church website design in order to match the Christmas mood? This is a great time to have a website designer take over since you’ll have better results and reduce your tasks. You could also hire a professional for other duties, including setting up the decorations and sending out invitation cards. If your budget allows it, the goal is to delegate as many tasks as possible.
Make Arrangements Well In Advance
Did you know there are churches that begin making Christmas plans as early as five months in advance? If you’re planning to have a dinner after the Christmas service, it’s only wise to choose a caterer well in advance since waiting might result in a higher price. Likewise, supplies are usually cheaper if you buy them before the Christmas season.
Examine Your Inventory
Of course, church members are looking forward to Christmas day, and they expect the service and the event afterwards to be flawless. During this time, you should consider all situations you could face, such as a power failure, and have solutions in mind to ensure the event still takes place.
Christmas is just around the corner so use the remaining time to prepare your service and decorations. With a variety of tasks to do, it would be beneficial if you hired a professional to change your church website design to suit the season. As a result, church members can devote their free time to putting up the tree, lights, and other decorations needed for Christmas day.
Posted on November 21, 2018 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Ministry websites, social media, and direct mailing are communication platforms that feature varying preferences with different age groups. Text messaging, in contrast, is a channel that almost everyone with a mobile phone uses. If you have an urgent or important message to share with the congregation, texting is one of the best ways to inform them. Here are the top benefits of texting for your church that you should keep in mind.
Cost & Time Efficiency
Any church that is on a tight budget could benefit a great deal from text messaging as it provides a means of connecting with members. The reason for this is that it’s far cheaper than other methods like printing fliers or sending direct mail.
With some plans, you might only pay a few dollars to send texts to a congregation of a thousand people. Again, consider the aspect of saving time where you want to pass a general message, because all you have to do is create one text then select all your contacts and send it.
Quick Reach During Emergencies
Texting is without a doubt one of the surest ways of reaching your congregants especially when there’s a situation that needs their immediate attention. In case there’s a fire accident, a looming natural disaster or any other emergency, texting is the best way to inform your church members about it.
Some churches conduct special live sermons where the congregants are allowed to air questions through text messages about the concepts of the speaker. Not only is this an excellent way of getting questions and responding to them quickly but it also serves as a method of finding out how many members are engaged.
Aside from using ministry websites, texting may be the most inexpensive, fast, and effective way to connect with your congregation. When it’s used in conjunction with other communication platforms, you have a greater chance of spreading the gospel while marketing your church more efficiently!
Posted on November 12, 2018 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Technology benefits the church in many ways and the internet makes it possible for people from all over to discover your ministry. For instance, church websites are being used to spread the gospel and social media is proving to be very helpful for uniting believers through prayer. This article highlights several reasons why it’s a great idea to put your prayer requests on Facebook and other social media platforms.
Allow Others To Feel Helpful
One way in which Christians grow in faith is by doing prayers for each other. People of faith want to feel like they’re making a difference and typically respond to prayer requests on Facebook. When they do, most church members no longer feel helpless but rather get a strong feeling that they’ve helped a fellow congregant.
It might seem like some of the prayer requests on Facebook get very little reaction from churchgoers but the truth is that many believers are out there and ready to pray for others. Prayers create unity among believers as they work towards a common goal and this can greatly boost faith.
Increased Devotion To Prayer
Many Christians know they should pray often but don’t, mostly because it doesn’t create any commitment. If you want to enliven your prayer life, one effective way would be to pray for other people. After praying for those who are part of the congregation, check to see who have posted prayer requests on Facebook.
Better Response To Prayer Requests
A church that looks to achieve growth needs to keep members informed on how they should respond to prayer requests. Start by reading the post and observing the comments of others then remember the responses you see from believers and employ them in the future.
While church websites and video sharing platforms like YouTube remain the best channels for spreading the gospel on the internet, social media is the most effective outlet for prayer requests to be answered. Encourage church members to post prayer requests on Facebook as it not only improves unity among them, but it helps the ministry attract new members.
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