How Do I Create a Website For My Church?
If you run a church, then you need a website to both attract new members, and give your current members any information they require.
What if you have a small budget? Most churches don’t have a ton of money to invest into a website. Luckily, with tools like WordPress, you can quickly build a high-quality site that will become your virtual home on the Internet.
Below we’ll walk you through the process of creating a website for your church using WordPress. There are other options out there, but WordPress will give you the most freedom and customization abilities.
1. Choose a Host and Domain
The first thing you’ll need to do is purchase hosting and a domain name. There are a ton of beginner friendly hosts out there like UFO Host.
UFO Host offers a one-click install of WordPress, so all it takes is a few minutes to get WordPress installed on your site.
You’ll also need a domain name to go along with your hosting package. The domain you choose will be part of your overall branding, so make sure you choose wisely. You may be able to get your church’s name, or if it’s common, then you might have to add your location to the end of it.
2. Install Your CMS
If you choose UFO Host, then this will make installing WordPress on your site much easier. All you have to do is go to your cPanel and find an application that is named Softaculous. Then, follow the directions on the screen and it will automatically install WordPress on your site.
If you’re having trouble finding your cPanel or figuring out how to install WordPress, then make sure you look through your host’s documentation and tutorials.
3. Pick a Theme
Luckily there are dozens of existing WordPress themes that are designed specifically for the functionality that churches require. Below we highlight some of the most popular church themes. Any of the following would be a great choice for your organization.
Most of the themes below are premium themes, which means they’ll cost a little money, but we also highlight one free theme that could work for your church as well.
- Outreach Pro Theme
- Any theme from Church Themes
- Forgiven Theme
- WP for Church
- Charitas Lite, a solid free WordPress theme
- Risen Theme
4. Choose Your Plugins
You don’t technically need any plugins for your WordPress site to function, but they can offer additional features you might enjoy. Two plugins almost every site should install are Yoast SEO for search engine optimization and Akismet for spam blocking.
Below we offer a few church-specific plugins you might want to try out:
Most churches have events like bible study, fundraisers, and much more. By having a portion of your website dedicated to events you can encourage more people to show up.
You may want to offer additional ways for your congregation to give back to your church. One way to do this is by opening up donations on your website as well. Give will make collecting donations a breeze.
Sermon manager allows you to publish any recorded sermons online. This can help encourage people to check out your sermons and help people catch up if they couldn’t attend a sermon.
5. Customize Your Site
Planning out your website is an important step of the website building process. This will help you determine what content needs to be written, how users will navigate your site, and the overall functionality you require.
For your church site, you’ll need to cater to your current congregation, new members, as well as any groups like youth groups or Bible study.
With your site planned out, you can begin customizing the visual appearance of your site. Depending on the theme you chose, you might be able to upload the theme’s demo content, which will mirror the demo theme. Then, all you have to do is swap out your own content and images and you’re all set.
You may also have a separate customization panel, or you can use the built-in theme customizer by navigating to Appearance>Customize.
6. Launch Your Site
With your site built-out and your content uploaded it’s time to launch your site. You may not need to do a big launch, but if you have any existing social media profiles you can share the link there.
Also, make sure current members of your congregation are aware that your site exists, and you’ll be posting events and sermons there on a regular basis.
Building your church website doesn’t have to be a difficult task. By using WordPress to build out your church website you’ll simplify the building process and end up with an attractive and functional website.