In our continuing effort to implement the recommendations from Unstuck, we will be unveiling our new website on July 11th.
Websites are the digital “front porches” of churches. People make decisions about an organization based on how their website looks and how easy it is to use before they even get to the information that’s being provided. The majority of people seeking a new church will visit the church’s website before ever stepping foot on campus. Over 90 percent of the traffic on our current website only visits 5 out of 50+ pages on the site. Where they go tells us a lot about what information is vital. First, they are looking for information about our services on Sunday morning – when are they, what to expect, and what style of service. Then they want to see who we are (our staff), and what the Senior Pastor has to say, (pastor’s blog and sermon archives). Surprisingly, there is very little interest in what events are coming up or what groups they can join.
We want our “front porch” to be an inviting one that makes visitors want to come in and get to know us and not a place that is overwhelming, junkie or cluttered so that they don’t leave without ringing the doorbell. Our goal is to engage the first time viewer, to capture their attention in a way that moves them to visit our church. We want a visit to our website to be the start of a relationship that connects FBCW with our visitors and encourages them to take the next step on their own personal journey - attending for the first time, joining FBCW, or joining a small group here etc... This reflects our 4D, Discover (who we are, who Christ is…), Deepen (by attending church, a small group or Sunday School class), Do (putting into practice- within the church and throughout our community-the lessons of Christ), and Disciple (leading a small group either in our church or community).
After many hours of viewing good and bad websites, reading months of research from expert website designers and studying web design, and a lot of work, our new website reflects good design and ease of use that supports this goal. It looks very different from what you are used to. It is very much focused on the first time visitor and what they need to know on the home page of a website. Members will have to dig a little deeper into the website to get to the information that they’re used to seeing. There will likely still be opportunities for improvement after this release. As you use the new website and have suggestions, please send them to Bob Ohgren and Tim Riddick and they will look at how we might implement them and when.
Senior Pastor Ray Bearden