Churches like yours know how vital it is to stay connected online with both its members and reaching new people through social media and their church websites. But did you know there’s more that your church can do with its domain name? A domain name can be much more than a destination to the church home page. Your church can also turn that domain into friendly web links to increase the engagement of both members and visitors.
First and foremost, a domain is your digital front door. It is your church’s digital presence on the Internet that’s accessed by people 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It is your visitors’ first impression of your church. So, you need to make it a great one. A good web address is short (1-2 words), clear, searchable, and matches your church’s name exactly. These characteristics make it easy for your congregation, staff, and visitors to remember and to share with others.
“The biggest impact is the sharability of Canvas.church. It’s easy for staff and regular attendees to say check us out at canvas.church.” –Justin Stewart (Creative Director)
Popular churches like Life.church, Harvest.church, and Freshlife.church are also prominently using their domains everywhere marketing and communications happens. When your church branding is both its name and URL all together in one, your messaging has a call-to-action baked in. That’s a winning combo every time!
What’s more, Microsoft research found that people are 25% more likely to click on exact match domains. Having a domain name that exactly matches your church name and contains the keyword “church” can mean getting 25% more traffic to your website!
Here are three other ways a .church domain can help your church maximize its engagement:
- Promotional redirects: For churches, a .church domain may be more notable for people who see billboards or other out-of-home church marketing materials. Blessed Hope Fellowship, for example, uses Bhf.church in their billboard campaigns, which is easy to remember for drivers who can’t look it up while driving.
- Social links: Use a short, memorable domain that links directly to your Facebook or Twitter page. For example, Oswego.church uses this domain to drive traffic to their Facebook page, which they actively update with relevant information for their members.
- Shortcut URLs: Church leaders can use .church domains to link directly to event landing pages, donation or giving pages, or membership drive campaigns so interested people don’t have to navigate your entire website to find what they are looking for.
For example, a user-friendly URL like Menlo.church/easter redirects to https://menlo.church/easter-and-holy-week and Menlo.church/mentalhealth redirects to https://menlo.church/mental-health-and-addiction-resources. Makes sense, right? Serve your people well by sharing simple links that they can remember to increase engagement with valuable resources your church is offering. Similarly, a new domain name could be used for this purpose. Easter2022.church is much easier to share and the link goes to the event page at https://wellhousechurch.churchcenter.com/registrations/events/1209416.
These are great examples of how these churches are using shortcut URLs. Let me share an example where shortcut URLs were not used well. There I was sitting in the audience of a prominent megachurch that was showing event slides before the worship service. Instead of using their domain name for a friendly link, they used the bit.ly URL shortener with a random mix of letters and numbers. I’m sure whoever made that slide for ice skating night meant well, but that link probably got zero traffic and no engagement because no one can remember a string of random letters and numbers.
Make good use of your church domain name and maximize your digital engagement. It’s a valuable part for strengthening the faith of your members and guiding more people to take the next step in their spiritual journey.
Open your digital front door to invite more people to engage with your church and expand your community’s reach with .church. Get your .church domain today.
DJ Chuang is an ambassador for .church domain names, a part of Identity Digital powering the most relevant domain names on the Internet. DJ also works as the Technical Registry Manager for the .BIBLE top-level domain (operated by American Bible Society). DJ is known as a thought leader who helps churches and nonprofits learn how to use the latest digital technologies.
This post is sponsored by Identity Digital
More in-depth articles coming soon
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