Here at Pequea Church we are really just beginning to understand the power of our website. We have gone through two different website designs since I started here on staff. We are currently in the process of designing an entirely new design and I came across this post:

“Does your church website serve two masters?”

Here was my response:

Thanks for this post. This has been something that I have been trying to create a stance on for a long time. I agree with most everything that you said but when we have sat down and talked with new people to the church and have talked with the church body as a whole the visitors need the information like service times, core beliefs, and directions to the church but they also don’t want to feel like an outsider. They also don’t like to be labeled guest or first timer. They will most likely never park in the guest spot etc. Most visitors that we run into want to blend in.

Even though guests/visitors come to church and try and sneak in and sneak out…my research says that they still have a desire to know what is going on around the church. They want to know that Pastor Bob is going to be available for them and they want to know about schedules, they want to know about the church wide news so that they are not completely out of touch the moment they walk in the door and see the poster for the latest fundraising idea or the latest message series.

Often times a guest or first time visitor website is so static. I have found people are more likely to come and check something out if they see an alive and active community which is something that is often difficult to display on a static visitor only website.

The line of “members” and “visitors” are blurred on our website. Sure we use google docs to collaborate but that is on a team by team basis. Usually this is something that even all the church members aren’t interested in anyway. For example our worship ministry really doesn’t have time to be checking in on how the young adult team ministry is collaborating on the next big event or vice versa.

I am continuing to be challenged on this topic…lets keep the discussion going and my challenge would be for each of us to get to know our church people and get to know the visitors that are walking in the door. Every community in the world and United States is different…don’t get on the ban wagon of “well it works for them”. Innovate a new idea, find out what works for your church and your community!

 

What do you think? Let me know!