4 Year-End Tips for Your Church Website
No matter how hard you try to set and forget your church website, it will always need tweaks and updates. As design trends change, the life of your church moves forward, and your site gains traction, it’s inevitable that you will need to spend some time working through the details. What better time to do this than the end-of-the-year?
During that week between Christmas and New Year’s when the church office feels dead and people are recovering from the holiday craziness, plan to set aside some time for minor church website updates. Taking a little time can make a big impact when it comes to driving traffic to your site and helping people get to know you online.
Take a look at these four categories of changes to make to your site, and plan to have a fresh site once the new year hits.
4 Year-End Steps for Your Church Website
1. Review the Church Website as a Whole
The first step in your year-end church website planning should be to walk through your site. Plan to click on every page, every event, and every button. Try to look at the website like a visitor would and see if you can find specific information. Here are a few key areas to focus on:
- Is your church address correct? Can people find it easily?
- Where is your contact information located?
- Are your service times visible on the homepage?
- When it comes to social media, can people easily share content from your site?
- What links are in your header and footer? Do any of these need to be changed?
- Can people give easily online?
2. Remove Out-Dated Content From Your Church Website
Even though you spent months slaving over your Christmas content, people don’t want to continue to see it once the 26th of December rolls around. As you go through your church website, pay close attention to any content that is either dated or irrelevant now and remove it from your site. (Psst! If you integrate your ChMS events with your website, those will automatically update.) Look specifically for these areas:
- Past events: Remove any links, pages, and/or graphics that are associated with the events that have already happened.
- Outdated photos/videos/graphics: If the smiling five-year-old on your homepage is now a teenager, it might be time to update your photos. Take this time to remove any content that is noticeably dated.
3. Add New, Appealing Design and Content to Your Church Website
Now that you’ve removed the dated content, it’s time to replace it with a fresh design. This is where you can get creative! However, be sure to focus on branding as you do this so your site continues to look consistent. Focus on the following:
- New Events: Add upcoming events complete with details, graphics, social hashtags, and photos. This is where you will direct people as you promote these upcoming events so make sure that everything is accurate and appealing. Again, a ChMS integration will save you from duplicating efforts here.
- Goals for the new year: If you aren’t in the habit of adding your yearly goals to your site, now is a great time to start. Get your membership on board with the direction you are moving as a church by including these. Then, provide updates throughout the year.
- Incorporate Design Trends: Do some research to find out what will be popular for websites this next year. Then, pick a couple of trends to incorporate in your site. Here is a site to get you started.
4. Update Important Church Website Pages and Features
Finally, the last step in getting your church website ready for the new year is to update important pages and features. Identify the pages that need some new life, and work to update content, layout, and design. Get started with these:
- Staff page: Remove any staff members that have left and add in new staff. It could also be fun to include a new year’s goal for each member. Check out this article if you’re trying to decide if you want to include staff photos.
- About page: Make sure your About page has these seven items and that everything is accurate and up to date.
- Broken Links: Work to ensure that every link goes to the right place. If it doesn’t, now is the time to remove or update it.
- Sermon page: Add information about the upcoming sermon series and work to archive any old or dated sermons.
- SEO: This is a beast in itself, but little changes can make a big impact when it comes to being found online. Learn more here.
If your church website needs more than a little tweaking, let us help! Try a free demo of any of our church website designs here.