Get your church website

Whichever route you choose when building a website, one of the most important considerations is transferability. This means that more than one person needs to have instructions and login details, and to ensure that they can be passed on easily.

Decide on your budget

Firstly, lets talk money.

There are a few options for creating a website completely free, but these have significant drawbacks (normally adverts and restrictive domain names).

Usually you are going to need a budget for your first church website. This can range drastically: from no setup fee plus about £6 per month at the lower end, to about £1,500 setup fee plus £50 per month at the other.

Select your 'platform'

There are many options out there, and what you go for will depend on your budget and skill set. Here a few examples:

  • WordPress.com basic website at low cost. This is the simplest and cheapest option. You can purchase a domain name direct from Wordpress. Requires little technical knowledge and is hosted by Wordpress so you won't need separate hosting (see next step)

  • WordPress.org most flexibility & low cost - does require some technical knowledge and a hosting provider

  • Squarespace.com / Wix.com / Weebly.com flexible, fairly cheap & easy 'click and drag' websites if you have basic skill

  • ChurchEdit.co.uk / Church123.com / Churchpages.co.uk they do all the technical stuff & provide support, but there’s less flexibility & can cost more than above options

  • Local website designer / Agency often most expensive option, but you get a professional & no skill needed but watch out for ongoing costs
Choose hosting

Hosting refers to where your website ‘lives’ on the internet. You wouldn’t move to a new house without checking it was affordable, big enough, and structurally sound; finding a hosting provider should be no different. Depending on what you’ve selected above, hosting might be included (e.g. Wix.com) or you might need it (e.g. WordPress.org). Here’s a few example options for hosting:

Choose a name

You can’t have a website without a 'domain name'.

Your domain name is what people type into their browser (e.g. Google) to find your site. The Methodist website domain is: www.methodist.org.uk.

You probably want to use your church name for your website domain, but you’ll have to check it’s available (e.g. www.examplemethodistchurch.org.uk).

Lots of our churches use “.org.uk”, and this would be recommended. Try to avoid acronyms that are hard to understand.

Main tips: make it short, make it memorable, and make it easy to spell.

Build your website

The ‘how’ of building your website will vary considerably on which platform you’re using.

You’ll probably want to create some standard ‘pages’ which most church websites have, including a home page, about page and contact page.

Remember to have this basic information easy to find. Location, service times, contact details.

Try to keep to only a few main menu options and we would recommend between 5 and 7 menu tabs – over 9 is too many.

The main thing to remember when building a church website is your audience – for most churches your website should be 80% aimed at visitors and those outside your church congregation, with only about 20% geared to those in your church.

See the church website checklist for more detail.

 

Back to Make the most of your church website

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