Why Website File Names Matter

What we name files on our website may seem like a trivial matter. Yet any time spent on a shared network drive will highlight the importance of naming conventions and organization. Here are several reasons your website file names matter, as well as guidelines for creating a naming convention for you.

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Optimizing Church Landing Pages

One of the most important tools a church has on its website are landing pages. Social media shares and paid advertisements often drive traffic to a landing page. Those landing pages inform and persuade users to take action. Here is an updated article on this most important of page types.

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Preparing Churches for the Zero UI Revolution

Have you ever seen an application with no user interface? Many of you have used them without even knowing it. They only need us to speak. The spectrum ranges from automated phone directories, to the Apple’s Siri. The next question is “how does this relate to my church?” The problem arises when those zero UI application cannot find information about your church. Without properly encoded data, you make programs work harder to know about your church.
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Fixing the Perception of Time

Have you ever heard of the three click rule? It states that all content on your website needs to be within three clicks of the home page. Thankfully many people realize that this “rule” is a myth. The number of clicks does not frustrate a user. It is the inability to find the answers to the question they have. When a visitor lands on your website, they want their questions answered as soon as possible. This article will explore ways to reduce the time it takes to direct visitors to the answers they seek.
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CWS Podcast – Ep. 69: Church Websites that Help the Community

cws-podcast-logoChurches often help their local community, but their websites often just display evidence of that help. Why not directly help the community right on your website? Yes you should focus on recruiting new members, but we should also strive to love our neighbors. This is content that will let visitors know that your church cares about the community. Plus, it should rank well in local search engine results.
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Crowdsourcing Your Church’s Popularity

Search engines are about connecting people to content. If they have a question, the search engine attempts to find the best content to answer that question. It may be a website page, a video, or a profile on social media. While content should be relevant, it also helps if it is popular. You may think you have no control over your popularity. Yet, I will show you a few techniques that can help your status rise among churches in your area. Continue reading “Crowdsourcing Your Church’s Popularity”

Preparing for Wearable Technology

When we think of mobile technology, our minds go to phones and tablets. Yet the wearable technology market is growing. How do devices such as watches and glasses impact how we use technology? More important, how will it impact how churchgoers consume content? The announcement of the Apple Watch has pushed these questions to the forefront of our minds. So what are you going to do today to prepare for tomorrow?
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CWS Podcast – Ep. 58: Getting Your Content Out There

cws-podcast-logoThe primary motivation for viewing a website is to consume content. That content may exist to inform, persuade, or compare; but it should have a purpose that is aligned with an overall web strategy. Yet regardless of your intent or your audience not everyone will wish to consume this content just on your website. By providing multiple mechanisms to view it, you maximize your audience exposure and increase the odds of adding new members to your church.
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Avoiding Dead Ends

The message of this article is pretty simple. Every path on your website should have a purpose and not lead to a dead end. This may seem like a simple concept, but I imagine that many parts of your website do not accomplish this. Never give your visitor the message that it is acceptable for them to close their browser. There should always be another page with more information or a next step to take. In this article I will first explore the mechanisms and treatments that allow you keep the conversation moving. Then I will review the tools you can use to help find any gaps your website may have.
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The Importance of Sitemaps

Sitemaps mean different things to different people, and this article will explore the most popular definitions as well as their importance. The problem is that they all use the word “sitemap” for very different web tools. However when you begin to define what they really are, their purpose, how they are structured, and how to create them; you see they are indeed very different. This article will explore what they are and hopefully give you a better idea of how to use them to make better church websites.
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CWS Podcast – Ep. 46: Landing Pages and Your Church

cws-podcast-logoIf you are trying to promote an event at your church, one great tool for this is a landing page. If done correctly, they focus visitors on a much narrower scope and nudge them toward a single decision more quickly. But what do landing pages consist of, and how can my church use them in its overall strategy? Read on my loyal reader while I hopefully answers all these questions and more!
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CWS Podcast – Ep. 29: SEO for Churches

cws_podcastUnlike the movie, if you build it, they do not always come. The novelty of the web has worn off and the fact that your church has a website will not make you unique anymore. You need to be easily found; and with all of the church websites out there, high rankings in a search engine is your best bet. So how can you bubble to the top of search engine rankings? Last episode I talked about some proactive measures you can take to get yourself known, however there are plenty of strategic decisions and tactical actions you can take that will give your site the high-ranking it deserves.
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