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Update your website for Christmas

If you are a church, you’ll have many people looking over your website considering visiting it for a Christmas service. You’ll also have your regular attendees frequenting your website more as they invite family and friends. What’s more is that other members of your community may be looking for a helping hand or an outreach that your church is doing within your community.
Christmas Eve ServiceWhere do you have all this information? How is it organized? How easily can it be found?

If you’re a Christian School, some of the above applies – more so for events and concerts, but also any community outreach or special programs you may be doing at this time of year.

If you are having special events at Christmas, we recommend the following ideas. You can pick and choose if any of these, or any combination of these ideas will work for you!

  1. Create a home page slide (or several) with visual representation of the event (such as Christmas Eve Service, or Community Table Meal), and link that slide to a page with more information. This is a one-click for visitors to land right on that info.
  2. Have quite a bit going on? Consider creating a new page just for the Christmas happenings. Organize that page clearly (we recommend using different tools for each different event/happening), and even use your right side bar to place an Upcoming Events calendar to help users stay organized and on top of things at a glance.
  3. Build excitement, emotional connection and anticipation of your events by adding “behind the scenes” photos on your website. These can be as simple as volunteers setting a stage, decorating the building, printing concert programs – you get the idea. Keep it easy by simply adding a single slide show to your event page and adding more as you go along.
  4. Create a special category in your Announcements Database for the Christmas Season. Build announcements for all your main events and services, but also build announcements for things like “calling all volunteers” and “calling all Christmas Cookie Bakers!”. Connect your announcements to your social stream and you’ll automatically be updating your Facebook and/or Twitter feeds at the same time!
  5. Use the same slides you created for your home page to post on your Facebook and Twitter pages, and be sure to link to your website (either the home or the event specific page). This will help spread the word, and increase your site traffic.

For your event information, be sure to include:

  • The dates and times of all the services / happenings. Make this very clear at the top of the page or event section.
  • What new visitors should expect at the special service (a short write-up).
  • Is there childcare for the event?
  • Show pictures of the building or even last year’s event to give new visitors a sense of what the building looks like and the event “feels” like.
  • Directions to the location if unique; if not unique, create a hyperlink in your text to your regular directions/map page on your site.
  • Certainly if there is a fee for the event, but even if a good-will offering is taken.

Larger churches have paved the way for full Christmas webpages or even “micro-sites”, and while that may be overkill (or too much for your team to accomplish right now!), they may serve as inspiration:

  1. http://gccwired.com/christmas-eve/
  2. http://christmas.willowcreek.org/
  3. http://saddleback.com/watch/news/2013/12/12/christmas-at-saddleback (a portion of 2013’s pages here)

If you are not sure how to build a special event page on your website, just ask our team! We’d be happy to help you out.

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