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Managing a Spiritualist Center

Choosing The Right Hosting For Your Church's Website
By:Roberto Bell

Church has always been a fundamental part of society. Many people believe that church represents and influences their everyday lives and activities. These days, churches can face many obstacles when it comes to choosing the right messages to send to people. A lot of times, these messages can be misinterpreted or misunderstood as something else, and the fact is that maintaining a well-organized church includes maintaining an appropriate image, for members as well as the public at large. The Internet is the best way for any church to create and disseminate a message about what it stands for.

There are certain steps that a church should follow when they are deciding how to build a church website. These 10 important steps will help with that process.

1. Make sure to choose an attractive but professional design. Church is just like any other organization that requires certain degrees of formality when establishing its ideals and offering information. This is why it's important to have a professional looking site. The site is going to reflect the church in many ways, so be sure that you are adding things that current and potential church members can relate to.

2. The site needs to be interactive as well as useful to visitors. There are so many millions of sites on the Internet that there is always going to be one that's more popular than the other. It is important to keep your site just as interesting and useful as the best ones like it, and let the popularity find its own level. Keep your members coming back to the site by listing up-to-date information and upcoming events. You can even include pictures, blogs and information on classes or ministry activities.

3. Choose a web hosting provider that will offer you all the support necessary to run a successful site. This step is very important but often overlooked. Don't allow the "do it yourself" approach to ruin anything for your site so be prepared if something goes wrong. Technical problems need to be put into the hands of the professionals, so get some help from staff or volunteers. When you hire a hosting provider, you need to be sure you trust them, as well.

4. Choose a provider that offers features that are especially designed for a church site. Having the right features can make all the difference. Providers that offer such things as site statistics can be a huge help. A hosting provider can offer a weekly backup to alleviate any headaches about potentially losing your data. The more features offered, the better.

5. Regardless of your site's size, you want a provider to offer plans according to the needs of your church, no matter how small it is or how big it grows.

6. Providers should be upfront with all of the applicable fees associated with starting your site. Avoid the hidden charges by asking for an itemized estimate. This way, you won't be paying for anything you don't need.

7. Have a good set of management tools in place. You need to acquaint yourself with the term CMS (content management system). This is a system put in place to help you organize content that is on your site like blogs, media and calendars, as your church will want to deliver the right message, in a professional way, to site visitors.

8. Be sure to have an idea of how much bandwidth the church will require. Some providers allow you to choose the bandwidth space you need. If your church will be expanding and growing it's important to plan ahead and be prepared with extra space.

9. When you're considering a provider that can help you maintain, design and host your site, it's necessary that you investigate what the "administrator interface" looks like. You don't want to get stuck with a site control panel that is highly advanced if you are a beginner. This can be way out of your league. Start with a simple interface if you're a beginner who has no expert help.

10. The more advanced your tools are the better. Beside the CMS, your church may need advanced tools such as a "ministries management" system, newsletter tools, volunteer management forms, membership records and a photo album. A "prayer center" and an advance calendar system are other things that could be handled by a good CMS (see #7 above) plus some low- or no-cost utilities.

The most important thing to consider when choosing the right hosting provider for you church's website is the fact that, if your church grows and expands, you will need a provider that can grow and expand with you. Make sure to plan ahead and design your site around the members, so that they truly get a sense of the message your ministry is trying to send. Design a site that will allow for your members to feel interactive with it. Search for a provider that can offer the essential tools needed for a successful site, but realize up front that it takes a lot of work on your part. If you really put your heart into it, your congregation just might consider the church's new website a true godsend.

About The Author Community Spice offers the tools you need to help connect your community, through its online presence. Offering church website hosting http://www.communityspice.com and everything you need to build your church website. Visit online at www.communityspice.com/ and get started with a free trial today.