Hey, it’s been a while since there’s been much action there, so I’ll throw-out this topic to you! Many of us have websites, either personal or for our congregations. In your mind, what makes for a good website? What really attracts you to a website? What repels you? What design elements are good and what are a turn-off?

I’d love to hear your comments to the above questions!

Here’s a list of 5 things that I think can turn people off to your church website:

1. Not mentioning what’s happening this week. New people often go to a website first to check your church out before coming to visit. Not having current info on what’s happening leaves them in the dark and may help them make their decision to not visit. Likewise, having information what what’s happening last month or last year, as if its current, can be a BIG turn-off.

2. A big picture of your church building on the main page. What’s ministry really about, people or your building? In my opinion, having pictures of people on your home page is most important. A picture of your building might be better placed on the “Directions” section of your site.

3. Having lots and lots of pictures and graphics on your home page. Having pictures and graphics are important, but be careful not to overwhelm people when they visit your site.

4. Using bad photography. Good, brightly lit, well-cropped photos are important to show your best! Pictures with shadows are not good. Pictures showing people in the distance are not good. Head and shoulder shots of people or close-ups of people doing things together are much better.

5.Directions to your church or worship times that are difficult to find. I’ve been to more than once church website where I could not easily find directions or what time they gather for worship. Something similar is not finding an email address to contact the church or pastor. To make your church more attractive to others, its important to make finding this kind of information easy.

What are your turn-on’s and turn-off’s for church websites? Do you like multi-media on sites? What would you add to my list above?

Also, in your opinion, what are the best Church of the Brethren websites? If you were going to nominate a congregation’s site for recognition, whose would you name?

I’d love to get your thoughts on all the above!