Web site & Internet Presence

A siloutte of a computer with the words Web Site & Internet Presence

This min­istry is made up of a few peo­ple who take pic­tures, write and post cal­en­dar items, pho­tos and news sto­ries relat­ing to our church. And peo­ple who main­tain and oper­ate our face­book page and our web site.

The Mount Olive web site is entire­ly main­tained and oper­at­ed by vol­un­teers. The under­ly­ing Drawing of the earth with a grid and the words

soft­ware used to cre­ate the web site is Word Press, a pub­lic domain pro­gram that is used by many web sites. Word Press lends itself to being used by an orga­ni­za­tion such as a church because it allows for a num­ber of peo­ple to post arti­cles with news or updates with only a lit­tle train­ing.

The Mount Olive Luther­an Church web­site is viewed by peo­ple all over the world, so even though the main focus is local, we should nev­er under­es­ti­mate how God might use our mes­sages to fur­ther the Good News of the Gospel.

Being Inviting to Guests and People from our community

Increas­ing­ly, if any church does not have a decent web­site they’re miss­ing an oppor­tu­ni­ty to reach and invite a lot of peo­ple who might oth­er­wise have joined the church or at least vis­it­ed.

Picture of a phone with icons filling the small screen

Most peo­ple under the age of 40 (or is it under 70?), when they check out church­es, do most such inves­ti­ga­tion online. Vis­i­tors at our church have often already been to our web­site. (When my wife and I spent time out of state we find a church to attend by using our smart phone.) Hav­ing a qual­i­ty web­site is not about being hip or “with it.” It’s one of the basic aspects of being invit­ing, hos­pitable and wel­com­ing.

Our online pres­ence is their first impres­sion.  New vis­i­tors are com­ing to church nowa­days because they found the con­gre­ga­tion online first, usu­al­ly at the web­site or face­book page.

Our web­site is the online front door to the church for many, many peo­ple. We put greeters at the front door of our phys­i­cal church, and line up ush­ers in the sanc­tu­ary, and set up dis­plays in the narthex, and make sure the facil­i­ties are attrac­tive and com­fort­able. The church web­site must receive the same type of dili­gent care to attract new and return­ing guests.

The web­site is the only online plat­form we actu­al­ly con­trol. Social media is a key part of any com­mu­ni­ca­tions strat­e­gy, but we have no say on the changes they make or how they oper­ate. Just look at Face­book over the past sev­er­al years. Changes to algo­rithms and busi­ness mod­els have made it tougher to reach your users unless you spend lots of mon­ey to pay Face­book to reach even those who fol­low you.  With our web­site, we’re in charge of any changes.

Engaging Members and People of our Congregation

The web­site can serve as a quick source of crit­i­cal infor­ma­tion about meet­ings and events. Have you ever lis­tened to some­one announce an upcom­ing event dur­ing the church ser­vice and then for­got­ten some of the impor­tant details? A qual­i­ty web­site should have infor­ma­tion to serve as reminders to mem­bers as well as invi­ta­tions to non-mem­bers.

Infor­ma­tion about our church and its min­istries is of inter­est to the entire con­gre­ga­tion and get­ting that infor­ma­tion out is vital to suc­cess­ful activ­i­ties and to recruit­ing new mem­bers.

The web­site could con­tain a con­tin­u­al­ly updat­ed direc­to­ry of mem­bers eas­i­ly acces­si­ble to every­one.

Con­trib­u­tors to Web­site help  Cre­ate An Online Com­mu­ni­ty. Our church web­site allows the feel­ing of com­mu­ni­ty to con­tin­ue when peo­ple are not in church.

Our web­site is nev­er going to replace to the face-to-face inter­ac­tions that fel­low­ship pro­vides, how­ev­er, it can be a start­ing point for attract­ing new vis­i­tors, engag­ing cur­rent mem­bers and catch­ing the atten­tion of Chris­tians who have just moved into the Yaki­ma area.

Poster that shows a man ready to work and the words Help Wanted:

Reporters -to write and post brief news arti­cles about past events or invit­ing notices about future activ­i­ties.

Pho­tog­ra­phers -to take pho­tos of church activ­i­ties and post them to face­book or to the web­site.

Web­site tech­ni­cians -main­tain, update and improve the site.

Peo­ple from every min­istry and group in our church are need­ed to share sto­ries and pic­tures of their activ­i­ties. The high­est qual­i­ty news arti­cles are those writ­ten by peo­ple who are involved.

Peo­ple not involved with a par­tic­u­lar min­istry, who are will­ing to attend events and/or inter­view orga­niz­ers to share infor­ma­tion with the con­gre­ga­tion, help­ing to build up the qual­i­ty of the web­site by report­ing on upcom­ing events and activ­i­ties and by telling the whole church fam­i­ly the sto­ry about  what hap­pened at an activ­i­ty or event.

Con­tact: Ter­ry Forti­er 509–949-1850 Teralan4ta@aol.com

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