There’s a pivotal shift taking place in modern ministry. Average church attendance is decreasing and appears to be the result of a lack of outreach and inclusion. Recent studies have shown that a majority of Christians don’t attend on a regular basis because they haven’t found a church to call home. While it can be tempting to focus on keeping the congregation you have, reaching those who don’t attend is equally key. These Christians have a firm foundation in God, but they’ve felt abandoned or disconnected by churches in the past and choose to practice their beliefs in alternate ways. One of the most effective ways to reach these at-home Christians is through a solid online ministry. Not sure how to take these important steps for your church? Here are just a few tips for improving your ministry’s online presence.
Clear and Concise
Before delving into specifics, it’s important to first mention the visual nature of your online ministry. When new guests visit your website, it should be easy to navigate and fairly straightforward. Be sure that your visuals represent what’s most important to you and your church. Have set links for contact information, directions, and an “about us” section. Be clear and concise in your descriptions. State the mission of your church and its core values in an incisive manner. If this portion of your online presence is wordy or overbearing, you’ll lose new visitors before they ever set foot in the door.
Not sure how to best describe the important aspects of your church in a clear way? An online word counter is your best friend when it comes to uniformed content. Set a designated cutoff for each page of your site. Then, simply type your content into the word counter to stay on target. These vital tools can also assist in grammar, keyword integration, reading level, and more. When new guests visit your website to learn about your ministry, they should be able to navigate freely, understand clearly, and feel welcomed.
Social Media is Key
A simple way to boost your online presence is by creating various social media pages. Seek either a volunteer or staff member to run your accounts so they’re streamlined and prioritized. Regular updates are key but don’t drown your followers in posts. If your account reaches spam-level, you’re likely to lose followers. Use your social media pages to inform your congregation of upcoming series, outreach programs, and live events.
The most important aspect of a successful online presence is audience engagement. When you create social media accounts, design polls, schedule live streams, and formulate hashtags. When regular attendees or first-time guests visit your church, they can use these tools to share their experience with others. An account that shows not only your perspective but that of your attendees is crucial. New guests or those who stumble across your page are more inclined to engage if they see others doing the same. Host live streams with pastors, church leaders, and other members of your ministry to bring outreach to a digital level. Search a church supplies catalog online for devotionals to share and other key tools.
Starting an online presence can feel overwhelming, but it’s really rather simple if you take it slow. Start with these simple steps and watch your interaction grow in time. Remember that a successful church isn’t about having more members than the next, or gaining the most followers. Your intentions for seeking a larger online presence should be centered on reaching more hearts in Jesus’ name. When you fix your eyes on that purpose, God will use these tools to call his sons and daughters home.