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Posted on January 31, 2018 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Categories: General
Does your church have an aging congregation and you’re struggling to attract younger members?  Maybe you tried upgrading your facilities but it hasn’t produced the results you had in mind.  The secret lies in communication responses and the following suggestions will draw youthful members in a way to ensure they keep coming back.
 
Ministry Websites Should Be Responsive & Up-To-Date

Ministry websites with a responsive website design are those that offer the same look and features despite being accessed from a desktop or a mobile device.  Text and images are resized for optimal viewing on smaller screens.  A majority of younger visitors only use a mobile device for going online so make sure you create a website that prioritizes that type of traffic.

If you have a blog on the church website, tailor the topics to focus on issues that affect the youth such as college and marriage.  Aside from that, consider starting an online community and encourage younger members of your ministry to participate in the discussions.
 
Send Messages Via Text

As much as emails and an online community are a viable means of connecting with church members, they are not exactly youth-oriented.  Young people prefer to communicate via their smartphones, mostly through text messaging.  Some use ordinary text messages while others use a texting app so clarify which method works best.
 
Embrace Technology

When young families come to your church, never discourage them from using a mobile device as that might cause them to search for a different church.  Instead, allow them to read the scripture from their device during the service so they feel welcome.  As a result, they may attend every week and spread the word about your ministry on social media.
That’s why it’s essential for your ministry to have an account on social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.  Younger people are more likely to join your ministry if you interact with them where they frequently spend time online.
Posted on January 22, 2018 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Categories: General
Reliable research conducted by reputable sources like Giving USA indicates religious people are more likely to offer donations to charitable organizations, particularly churches.  Additionally, studies show that even as church attendance declines, the philanthropic tendency of religious people has not.

As a matter of fact, with advancement in technology, your ministry has an even better chance to benefit from online donations.  The best part, today’s technology is all-inclusive and with an excellent church website design, you can make it possible for all age groups to give to your church.
 
Evidence Of Increased Online Giving

Based on the Millennial Impact Report from 2013, more than 80% of the younger generation have given or are willing to give to a charitable organization through an online platform.  As well, younger churchgoers love it when church websites they’re giving to are optimized for mobile browsing.

According to one study, the generation preceding millennials but after baby boomers are similar when it comes to giving online.  In fact, individuals in this age group, Generation X, are likely to donate money to support a cause and give more often than other generations.

Typically, they like to donate and connect with nonprofit organizations through the internet, particularly through mobile devices.  Social media also appears to be a vital engagement channel with more than 40% of them following nonprofit organizations on social networks.
 
The Older Generation

The baby boomers, or people who are now over the age of 50, are the top source of income for churches and other charitable organizations.  Many of them still use a traditional method like direct mail to engage with nonprofit places, but their online engagement is growing as technology continues to improve.
Some popular churches use the internet as their primary source of receiving donations.  With that said, make sure your church website design provides visitors and members with the option to donate online.  If not, you could be missing out on donations from all generations!
Posted on January 3, 2018 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Categories: General
As a church leader, you need a way of balancing church expenditures to ensure effective improvement of the ministry without straining any members.  Financial tasks such as meeting budget goals, gathering receipts, and possibly reimbursing staff can be tiresome and consume a great deal of your time.

With expense management solutions, you have a convenient means of tracking transactions, allocating funds, and controlling expenses.  Doing so, you’re able to concentrate more on planning the future of your ministry than on daily spending.  The following are a few tech-based ways of managing church expenses easily.
 
Church Websites Or Mobile Apps

It can be hard to predict when members of your congregation need to make church-related payments.  In some cases, volunteers from your church may be on a mission in a neighboring state and need to make a purchase.
With church websites and mobile apps, a request may be made for funds and you can approve them from any mobile device despite your location.  Additionally, mobile apps help your members and volunteers view their spending in real time so they are more likely to regulate it and save as much as possible.
 
Prepaid Cards

The reimbursement process can be time consuming and complicated depending on the size of your church.  Furthermore, asking your staff to use their money on unexpected expenses often puts a strain on their finances, particularly if returning the money takes too long.  Though a credit card seems like a great solution, missed payments and additional fees are a common issue which adds to financial stress.

Prepaid cards with defined limits provide you with a safe means of transferring money.  They also offer you a convenient way of handing cash to volunteers and members of the church.  The last idea is to make use of a cloud-based tool that integrates your current accounting software, like PEX.  This solution may be connected to a mobile app which gives you full access to transactions and helps manage church expenses.
Posted on December 21, 2017 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Categories: General
If your church is like most, then you typically deliver your announcement either verbally or via print bulletins.  These two methods of communication may be used to address similar topics but in different ways.  For instance, with verbal announcements, the pastor or selected member brings the best information to the live audience.

They may add fun facts that give life to an otherwise dull message by connecting with the congregation.  On the other hand, print bulletins are meant to act as simple reminders of important news.  How can you ensure that your announcement remains effective all year?
 
Try Different Styles

The style used for your church can be swayed by many factors.  Maybe you’re used to having a member stand at the front prior to the sermon or afterwards and issue the announcements.  Why not try a live video instead?  It may be more effective than having the announcement given when people are there for the service.  Focus on making it interesting by touching on the main points with clear illustrations.  Last but not least, place the video on your website to get an advantage over other ministry websites.
 
Refrain From Giving All The Details

The audience can only process a few announcements at a time so it’s meaningless to issue multiple announcements.  Do you have an event coming up next week?  Rather than giving away all the details, just tell them what type of event it will be, the venue, the time, and other specifics that are absolutely necessary.

If they ask for further details, recommend that they visit your ministry websites.  In the end, realize there’s no need to agonize over this.  The goal is to keep it simple and relevant so remember that when crafting your statements.  Ensure a successful announcement by mentioning what you feel your audience needs to know and include in the bulletin where their questions can be clearly addressed.
Posted on December 7, 2017 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Categories: General
Does money seem to be the one aspect holding back your church’s vision?  Maybe you’re looking to expand the borders of your ministry and reach more people with God’s word but there just isn’t enough being given to make that happen.

As a pastor, you might find it hard to talk about money and for the congregation to be more generous in boosting the financial position of the ministry.  Yet, giving is the one action that makes a lasting impact on how a person feels.  Additionally, generosity and true discipleship go together and it’s the duty of any pastor to lead people along the right path.  Below are some ways to boost the giving nature in your church.
 
Be Thankful

Often, people are more likely to give when they feel appreciated.  So, before you receive an offering, take a moment to thank the congregation for their kindness and loyalty to the church.  Today, a superior church website design can be very influential towards thanking your followers for giving to the ministry.
 
Run End-Of-Year Campaigns

November and December are the best months to make time for nonprofit fundraising.  A majority of people are used to giving to philanthropic causes near the end of the year.  As a matter of fact, you may get an annual revenue bump of more than 10% if you take advantage of this so consider making this a yearly habit.
 
Lead By Example

Some people follow by example and you might agree that if you show them the benefits of a genuinely prayerful life, they devote more time to prayer.  The same case applies for generosity.  If others know you as a being stingy with your resources, they will too but if they see you giving wholeheartedly, they will be more charitable.  In the future, make sure the church website design is configured in a way that inspires church members to be generous so they are able to give at their convenience!
Posted on November 27, 2017 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Categories: General
Being a minister means having to deal with a multitude of tasks to support the church and in the midst of it all, you might neglect the most important duty – discipleship.  Discipleship, or helping fellow Christians follow Christ properly, requires an extensive amount of time and focus.  It’s not just about how many are in your congregation, it’s about having meaningful relationships with those that attend church and supporting their faith.  Here are a few ways you can help discipleship flourish in your ministry.
 
Encourage Interaction

Do you remember how Jesus taught his disciples?  He would have them participate in occasions like the last supper or the sermon on the mountain.  One idea worth trying is to divide your congregation into small groups and have them take part in activities such as going on a hike or studying the Bible.  As members work together, they will likely connect more and share what has enhanced their faith.

Another great way of encouraging interaction is to have church members take part in the discussions on ministry websites and social media.  When they share experiences and answer questions from others, they are more inclined to build long lasting bonds which are vital in true discipleship!
 
Bridge The Gap

Naturally, people will choose to connect with others who are closest to their age.  This often happens in church groups but it’s not good for discipleship.  Different generations might have helpful advice to share with each other but this exchange of information may never happen unless you encourage them to come together.

For instance, old couples might have marriage insights to share with young couples.  When these two groups are together, encourage them to share what techniques have helped the most so the generation gap is bridged.  On occasion, evaluate the impact of these tactics by following ministry websites to know if you are helping others live righteously.
Posted on November 6, 2017 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Categories: General
As a smaller church, you might feel like technology can do very little to help your ministry.  But, church websites can boost engagement with existing members and attract new ones when the right audience is targeted.
Most of your congregation likely has a smart phone or some other device that they use for connecting to at least one social network.  During that time, they are online and could potentially be visitors of your website.  Use the following online strategy if you have a smaller church.
 
Start A Website

All churches can benefit from a website as it is an excellent place for your content to be organized online despite the size of your church.  If you lack the skills it takes to design a website, contact a reputable designer or firm to have them implement the features you want.  Make sure your website includes a blog, service hours, contact information, links to social media profiles, images, and video of sermons or church activities.
 
Use Consistent Branding

A critical mistake often made in marketing is inconsistent branding and you should avoid that when implementing an online strategy for your church.  Use the same logo and maintain the same personality from social media to your website.  People would be confused about your ministry if you use a friendly tone on social media but a serious tone on church websites.
 
Get Members Involved Through Social Media

Social media reaches a wide audience but results vary depending on how active you are and the way you interact with those who follow you.  Post content regularly and engage members with a variety of images, video, and questions related to sermons.

In order to have success online, you’ll likely need help and members of your congregation are the best group to consider.  Request them to connect with the church profiles on social media and share blog posts from the church website.  As the congregation grows, observe church websites of larger churches to get an idea of what works and implement that to your online strategy.
Posted on October 20, 2017 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Categories: General
Technology is improving at a high rate and techniques that worked several years ago may be a waste of time today.  For instance, in 2007, you might have sent messages to your congregation through mail and that was likely effective.  But, is that method as effective now?

With the rising use of the internet, apps and ministry websites can influence the following your ministry has as more people use mobile devices to stay connected.  Here are some apps that can benefit your ministry with regard to communication, creativity, and scheduling of tasks.
 
Typeform

Typeform helps you prepare reports, surveys, auditions, song submissions, and issue new member sign-ups.  Aside from the money you save by not using paper sign-up forms, Typeform helps centralize your data and eliminates any confusion that comes with outdated excel spreadsheets.
 
Google Docs

Do you still email spreadsheets or print documents to send to church members?  Google Docs has simplified the process as your files are uniform and consistent so members of the congregation know of any changes.  Since documents are updated in real time, members always get the latest version of what the ministry has planned.
 
Trello

Trello is a project management app that helps plan your schedule with regard to events, conferences, and services.  This app is easy to use and allows you to keep everything organized as you can quickly view the progress of all projects.
 
Spotify

Spotify improves the way you play music before, during, and after a service.  If you normally play CD’s, you may have found that they can be slightly inconvenient, right?  The main benefit with playing music from Spotify playlists is that you can update them live and access them from anywhere.
 
Quip

Quip is similar to Google Docs but it combines documents and allows discussions to take place without using email.  As a result, each day may be productive as members are able to communicate with each other in real time.  Ministry websites are great for bringing the congregation together through the week while these apps can lead to a better service!
Posted on October 4, 2017 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Categories: General
Many churches are looking to boost the effectiveness of sermons and improve the ministry in some way with each passing year.  In order to do that, you need to apply exceptional tactics to gain the attention of your congregation so they feel a closer connection with the church.  The following communication tips have been known to positively impact how the congregation grows.
 
Where Your Focus Should Be

All churches share one common goal which is to spread God’s word.  However, your church should be unique in a sense and have distinct objectives that set it apart from other churches.  For instance, focus on reaching an audience that other ministries have failed to connect with such as people who have relocated and are looking for a new church.  Also, consider creating a specific preaching strategy to attract youth groups that are rarely drawn by traditional sermon styles.
 
Choose Sustainable Channels

There are a variety of outlets to use when reaching your audience but choose what is most effective after trying each one.  Today, people want to make the most of their time so they communicate through messaging while doing other tasks.

To ensure your online presence is responsive and flawless, utilize a church website design that gives your congregation and visitors the same look no matter what device they use.  Aside from that, post updates to your social media account frequently and respond to messages in a timely fashion.
 
Concentrate On Benefits

Often, people are interested in how a service will benefit them or if it will make an impact on how they feel.  Any endeavor to improve your ministry these days should take into account that most communication is taking place through the internet.  The audience you want to target may be diverse so implement a church website design that will draw as many people as possible.
Posted on September 18, 2017 8:00 AM by Faith Sites
Categories: General
One look around your church during a service reveals a very common scene to most pastors.  That scene is people looking down but not at their Bible as you may think.  Instead, cell phones are being used to pass the time which is the case for many teenagers as they text or play games.  Through texting and church websites, you can engage members during services to improve active communication within your congregation.
 
Why Should Texting Be Encouraged?

In the past, church services were thought of as a time to remain seated and listen while the pastor gave the sermon.  It was deemed rude to do anything aside from listening to the preacher and questions were usually discouraged.  However, times are changing as people have a growing desire to exchange knowledge rather than give or receive it in a one-way channel.

As a result, this has led to churches taking steps to be more interactive.  Younger members send messages while the pastor is speaking anyways so use it to be productive where they share sermon quotes with their friends.  How can you keep the congregation engaged with texting?
 
Constructive Use Throughout A Service

The first step is to welcome devices rather than shunning them.  Actually, some members may be using their device to follow along in a Bible app.  Encourage the use of devices but it should be in a constructive manner and ask them to turn off notifications to avoid any distractions.  Participation may be improved by asking members to give their responses through text-to-screen services.

With texting, members have a higher chance of remembering what the sermon was about.  Also, prayer requests are generally done through small prayer cards but texting and church websites offer a cheaper, easier way to relay prayer requests.  Text messaging in particular gets the youth more involved since it’s a convenient and effective option.  Likewise, it will be easier for the preacher to respond to prayer requests which can make a positive impact on the congregation.
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