We've identified several key indicators of a good Church website. Here they are (in no particular order):
- Modern layout
- Secure (with HTTPS)
- Fairly fast in loading
- Mobile friendly
- Easy for visitors to navigate
Let's look at these key indicators even further:
1. Modern layout - The website should look like it was designed fairly recently (not in the 90's). Along with a modern layout, it should also be up-to-date. Something from a year ago shouldn't be prominent on the site (you can leave it on the site, just make sure it's not on the home page or one of the main menu pages, except for blog entries).
2. Secure (HTTPS) - Websites that say HTTP instead of HTTPS are not going to rank well on search engines, plus they are losing a lot of trust with the public. For security reasons, you want to make sure you get an HTTPS certification (you may have to pay an annual price, depending on the website platform you're using, but many platforms offer it for free now as part of their monthly package).
3. Fast in loading - In May 2021, Google will be changing its algorithm to favor fast-loading websites (in addition to HTTPS secure websites), so it's increasingly obviously important to have a fast website (no more than 3 seconds for sure).
4. Mobile friendly - Similarly to modern layout, websites need to be seen well on tablets and mobile devices, especially since they're being used more frequently now to use the Internet. 10 years ago, it wasn't so important, but now it's essential for your website to be seen on mobile devices (for instance, if you have to zoom in to see the text, it's probably not mobile friendly).
5. Easy for visitors to navigate - Your website needs to provide all the relevant information for visitors, very easily. When I first got into website design for Christian organizations, honestly I didn't much think about how the visitors would be using the site, but it's best practice now to focus on the visitor's experience at least as much as you focus on how your members would navigate your site.
If you need for us to look at your website and see how it can be improved (and consider even looking at redesigning your site), contact us. We'd love getting you a new site (plus, our monthly hosting fee also includes website edits so you don't have to update it yourself or pay hourly for it to be updated).