Last year I had the privilege of consulting with Sunrise Community Church regarding their communications and they recently launched a new website that reflects the implementation of a plan we came up with together.
Their site was basically being ignored by the community they wanted to reach and frustrated the staff that knew their website was not engaging to anyone; including the people who attended. As we analyzed the website we realized there was a lot of good information no one cared about. Over 120 pages of content that didn’t connect with their congregation or community.
The look and feel was blah. It was there, but it was stagnant, boring, and a little overwhelming to think about the overhaul that needed to be done. However with the help of staff coming together and key members of the staff committing to the project a year later they were able to produce a website that is effective and engaging. Here’s how they did it!
Functionality – SCC took a year to build their site around their web based church management software, Community Church Builder. This gives their congregation a reason to interact with the website with things like small group sign ups, giving, and kids registration all in one place.
Creativity – Along with he functionality came the creativity; the curb appeals that engages the community they had a desire to communicate to and reach. A video “hero” at the top of the page, and a clean crisp front page now is causing the community to click and check out.
Guest Friendliness – After analyzing the traffic and discovering why people even go to a church website they decided to cater the website to engage the community first. In doing so we had to ask the question “what matters most to a visitor?” The facts were right in front of us. People wanted to know about the church, the service times, they wanted to hear or watch a sermon, know who the staff was and most visitor were checking out children, youth and women ministries. Again all this information was on the website before but it was very difficult to find. All this information became accessible on the front page. Easy to find and engaging to those looking to visit for the first time.
Intentional Organization – For the regular attendee they consolidated the 120 pages of chaotic content and organized it under five distinct categories that made it easy to browse and find what your looking for at the top of the page: Kids, Youth, Adults, Mission, Events.
The Final Product
This was just one of the last pieces to be put in place of a church communications makeover, but it is the result of collaborating as a team, being honest with one another, having healthy discussion and coming up with a plan. This website is the reflection of an internal work that happened first with the staff and now is engaging a church and it’s surrounding community.
How effective is your website?
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