6 Reasons to Have a Dedicated Guest Website for Your Church

Over the years the Auxano Design team has helped churches think more strategically about guest engagement. (Read 10 Mind Blowing Facts to Fuel your Hospitality Ministry). One great idea is to create a separate website for guests. At Auxano, we call this a “buzzsite.”

To catch an example, check out Gateway’s WelcomeToYourJourney.com or First Baptist’s ExploreFirst.org

Why have a dedicated site just for guests at your church?

1) Make a Bigger Front Porch: Eighty-seven percent of your guests will click-thru before they walk-thru. Having a site dedicated to guests enables you to communicate more guest information in a more useful way.

2) Smooth the Path: Guest have mini-hurdles coming to your church for the first time. They don’t know where to go, or what to do.  A guest site will enabling them to “get a feel” ahead of time, as a simple way to make them feel more welcome.  Notice how Gateway walks your through these key guest decisions from parking lot to checking in children.

3) Show you Care: When a guest enters the dedicated site, it will show that you are expecting guests and that you care about their experience.

4) Resolve Conflict: Having a dedicated guest site alleviates the burden on your main church site to speak to both members and guests.

5) Show Some Personality: A guest site can introduce your church with with a story, promise or creative element. Gateway Community Church used the tagline “Welcome to your Journey” as their URL. It enabled the moment of introduction to include something to spark the imagination and draw people in rather than just saying “visit our church.”At First Baptist Dallas, they creatively use a “Plan Your Visit” form on their ExploreFirst.org to make the welcome experience personalized.

6) Evaluate Your Investment: A guest site can measure the effectiveness of external communication initiatives or campaigns that point to the guest site and not the church’s main site. For example, when Gateway Community Church opened its building, they could know exactly how their six-piece direct mail invitations worked by monitoring web stats when the mail dropped.

Have used a similar site? Let us know about it.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Will Mancini

Will Mancini

Will Mancini wants you and your ministry to experience the benefits of stunning, God-given clarity. As a pastor turned vision coach, Will has worked with an unprecedented variety of churches from growing megachurches and missional communities, to mainline revitalization and church plants. He is the founder of Auxano, creator of VisionRoom.com and the author of God Dreams and Church Unique.

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Recent Comments
Yea! You fixed it!
 
— Mr. Troy Reynolds
 
I just discovered this today and am looking forward to exploring the content on here. It looks like it could be very helpful. Just an FYI - in your paragraph on not putting out B+ material you have a typo. A little ironic. :-) The third sentence begins with "You time" not "Your time."
 
— Troy Reynolds
 
I'm lost, to say the least! As a new pastor, taking over a newly started church I have read just about everything there is to learn what I can do to grow the church. I truly beleive that those attending our church are friendly and sincere. So that can't be the issue. I have read all the comments to this article and I feel that most churches will never have a fair chance! We are a VERY small church, so we don't have a children's church (yet). So if a family comes and gets upset that we don't have a children's church for them to put their children into, we lose! We do provide things for their kids to do during the service and even have an option for their kids to be in a different room, if they don't want their kids to sit with them. We are also such a small church that we don't have a worship team/band/etc. Our worship music comes from music videos. The congregation we do have likes it this way, but of course we would love to have a worhsip team. So, if someone comes to our church and is upset that we don't have live music, we lose! The point I am trying to make is that when people come in with preconceived ideas of what a church should be like, they will never find a church home, unless they find a church who's goal is to entertain! Every Sunday our message comes from the Bible, so that can't be a complaint for someone, so instead, people leave the church and never come back because they want more from a church: they don't want friendly people who are following the Word of God; they want a church that give them something (a babysitter for their kid, entertainment, free gifts, etc.) I'm sorry if sound cynical, I truly want everyone to hear the Good News and learn about Christ's love, but if they come in looking for something else, then the church will always lose!
 
— JAG
 

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