Have you ever googled your church? What did you find? Today, most people will research a church on the internet before they ever step foot inside the church building. We need to make sure we have a visible digital presence.
A couple of years ago, my husband was preparing to speak at a church and turned to the internet to find the church’s address. Unfortunately, he was unable to find it. He reached out to the pastor for directions, and in this very unique case, the pastor couldn’t provide an address or directions! While this was an unusual situation, I have often searched the internet for information for a particular church and ran into a dead end.
The internet is your face to the world. If you are not taking advantage of this free advertisement, you are missing a great opportunity to reach those around you.
Here are 4 free ways you can improve your digital presence.
- Google Business – This free tool enables you to list your church in Google Search and Google Maps. Include your address, phone number, website and hours of operation. You can even add photos and reviews.
- Facebook Page – Facebook Pages allow you to set up a page on Facebook that is separate from your personal profile. Once again, you can list your church address, phone number, website and hours of operation as well as a short description in the About section. With over 1.7 billion users, Facebook is a valuable tool to reach your target audience.
- Yellow Pages – I know, you may say that no one uses the Yellow Pages anymore. While we may not keep the “Yellow Book” at home, yp.com remains a top referrer for websites. Since it is free, it is worth checking to make sure your church or business information is current.
- Website – Nothing tells your story like a personalized website; it is your face to the world. Free websites are available using sources such as wordpress.com, or wix.com. (Please know that these free sites usually come with ads or company branding.) As your face to the world, your website should reflect your values, vision and mission with excellence. It takes time to keep a website current and well maintained. If you do not have the time or skilled personnel to maintain a website that represents your church with excellence, it may be best to rely on a Facebook page until funding is available to outsource your church’s website.
Increasing your digital presence is one of the easiest ways to “put yourself on the map.” How will people find our church if we don’t let them know we are here?