St. John’s 2.0Posted: December 17, 2010
Thanks to a good web design team and lots of helpful feedback, we finally have a new website up and running here at St. John’s. Check it out by clicking here. I’m delighted to share this and am very pleased we pushed to get it up before Christmas.
Revamping the website was one of my major goals when I got here in August 2009. Why is an online presence so important? Because that’s where the people are. Websites are by far the number one way visitors and newcomers find churches. They make first impressions long before a visitor meets the (hopefully smiling!) usher at the front door. I’d even argue that church websites are virtual ushers — so they had better be welcoming, friendly, and easily accessed.
The new website is still a work in progress — we need more pictures and in the future we hope to have audio (choir, sermons), video, and the capacity to accept online donations. But it’s a great start and I’m pleased with features like an online visitor’s card, link to our Facebook page, quick sign-up to receive the weekly e-news, an online pledge card, and a place for prayer requests.
There’s also a LOT of content. This is what surprised me the most about the whole process — the amount of time it took to unearth/write so much of this. Anyone who has been through a website redesign (especially for even larger projects) is probably laughing at my naiveté. If I ever did this again (not anytime soon, please) I’d consider just taking a whole week off to focus on it. Squeezing it into everything else was a challenge — albeit a worthwhile one.
The web design company we used was Christos Communications, the brainchild of the gifted and talented Kelly and Rob Harris. Kelly serves in the Communications department of the Diocese of West Texas and I’ve known her for a number of years through Episcopal Communicators. She and Rob were very responsive, creative, and their prices helped us to do this in a very cost-effective manner. Plus they’re as honest as the West Texas day is long (I have no idea if that’s a relevant simile). But that’s an important commodity in the world of web design. So kudos to them both and if you’re looking for a redesign, by all means get in touch with them.
Now back to sermons, bulletins, and all of those good things. ‘Tis the season.