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Home Page: Content

If impressions are made in the first 30 seconds of meeting someone, your website is no different. Except for the fact that your website may have less than 30 seconds to make a good impression. If you are using Google Analytics, you can be more sure of the exact time, but the point for this post is “what kind of impression is your home page making?

Today, we’ll focus on content. Your home page must contain keywords, phrases and essential information that communicates to search engines, visitors and returning visitors all the initial information about your church or ministry. But, too much content will serve as a negative. Home pages that are covered with text with little to no white space are harsh on users eyes and will be left unread. Home pages that are covered with graphic / graphic links, ads and more are visually overwhelming and the end result is that little to none of the content will be read.

Consider this list for content that should be on your home page:

  • Your organization’s name.
  • Who and what you are. This can be your mission statement, but often it is best if you create some friendly content that tells new visitors what you are about.
  • Service times (churches) or hours of operation.
  • Include keywords. For keywords, think about what people might be entering into Google to search for you. Terms like worship, service, church, school, non-profit, welcome, people, care, God, praise, ministry… words that are essential to your core purpose and words that people will seek out when searching for your church, school or organization.
  • Organize that content! In the Faithwebsites CMS, you have the ability to use the Left Side, Main Body (center) and Right Side Bar for content. Create balance and white space by moving certain content to one side or the other of your site. A common example of this would include service times or hours of operation moved to either the Under Left Navigation or Right Side (or consider your footer too!).
  • Make sure your website’s footer includes your address and other general contact information.

Consider this list of what to minimize or avoid on your home page:

  • Minimize graphic buttons, links and ad type of items on your home page. Everything in your school or church may be important, but not everything can be on the home page. If you do keep graphic links (I’m not referring to navigation links) on your home page, try to keep it down to a number – something between 3 and 5, and rotate between ministries, events,

    classes, etc. so that all departments in your organization get fair “home page coverage”.

  • Minimize the calendar of events. Having two weeks of events on the home page can be overwhelming, and so can having the youth pastor’s schedule. Remember that you can control the date parameter of what is displayed for each use of the Calendar of Events tool, and you can select which categories are displayed. Maybe mission trips can be on a Upcoming Events calendar on the Missions page,versus all the dates showing up on your home page.

  • Slide shows / photos. Pictures are great, and truly communicate what you are more than words, but too many pictures won’t serve you well. Again, keep the number of pictures displayed in your slide show between 3 and 5. If you have more – swap out the pictures in the slide show every other week or once a month.

For more information about Google Analytics or any of the Faithwebsites tools mentioned above existing customers can visit our Help Manual or contact Support via their Support Center.

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