Are Your Easter Service Times on Your Website?

Are Your Easter Service Times on Your Website?

March 19, 2015 by
A simple yet powerful Easter idea: Put your Easter service times on your website. Right now. Go! Do it.

Easter is coming hard and fast folks. We’ve got less than 20 days. Are you ready?

A lot of churches with communication teams are all hands on deck. Everyone is busy making final preparations, tweaking production and rolling out social media elements. Your print pieces are already done. It’s a lot of work, but you’re getting there.

Then there are the churches that don’t have a communication team. You don’t do fancy sermon graphics or a giant production. Oh you’ll bust out the choir robes on Easter Sunday and you’ll have a production, but it won’t involve a projector and mood lighting.

These are churches like mine. And for these churches I have a simple yet powerful Easter idea: Put your Easter service times on your website. Right now. Go! Do it.

We already know that more people will visit your church on Easter than any other Sunday of the year. But how can they visit if they don’t know when your Easter services are?

Less than 20 days before Easter and only 9 out of 20 churches had Easter info on the front page.

Welcome the Visitors

This seems brain-dead obvious. But somehow we overlook it. We assume people will figure it out. Or your Easter service times are the same as every other Sunday, so there’s no need, right? Wrong. People thinking about coming to your church for Easter are likely a little nervous and unsure of what they’re doing. You want them to feel welcomed, to know they’re going to the right place at the right time. If they visit your website and there’s not a word about Easter, you’re just stoking that anxiety. But if they see Easter mentioned, they’ll feel welcomed and reaffirmed.

It’s such a tiny thing, but it can make a big difference.

Especially if you’re doing something different. If you’ve got an extra service, different times or something special, you must let people know.

We’ve written an entire book about welcoming visitors and have tons of resources. Get in their shoes, especially at Easter, and help them feel welcome.

Easter Survey

I did a quick experiment with a Google search for “church” in my area. I checked out the area churches less than 20 days before Easter and found that only nine out of 20 churches had Easter info on the front page. Now granted, a lot of these are smaller neighborhood churches. Not a megachurch in the bunch. They likely don’t have a communication team.

But this isn’t a case where the tech savvy churches automatically had their Easter info up. Some had slick, new websites without a mention of Easter. Others had pretty woeful websites that still had Easter info. What matters here is actually updating that site. A lot of them could easily slap some text on the homepage with Easter service times. Or put a quick graphic in the slider (we’ve got some free Easter graphics you can use).

(And megachurches? I checked a few and three out of four had Easter info on the front page. So maybe some bigger churches need a reminder too.)

Put Easter on Your Site

Those big churches (most of them anyway) have had their Easter graphics splashed across their website for a few weeks now. Good for them. We may covet their quality design, but we can borrow this simple idea of putting the info out there.

Here are a few tips on how to do it right and lessons from my Google searching:

  •  Put Easter info on the front page. Don’t make potential guests hunt for it. Don’t think your newsletter or events calendar is good enough. One church had a kids’ Easter celebration mentioned in their newsletter. But how many people will dig that deep? Home page, people.
  • It’s OK to link deeper for more details. A lot of us don’t have a lot of flexibility on our website and it can be hard to squeeze in new stuff (and it’s a good way to clutter up your design). One church simply had a “Holy Week Schedule” link. It wasn’t flashy and it linked to a PDF (ug), but it’s better than nothing.
  • Make sure it’s actually linked. Test it. One church site I visited had a slick graphic in their homepage slider. Nicely done. But the graphic had no details and when I clicked it didn’t go anywhere. Fail. Other graphics in the slider were linked, but not this one. That’s either an oversight (test it!) or it’s useless.
  • Above the fold. Ideally your Easter info should be above the fold. One church had it all the way at the bottom. Good job for getting it out there, and maybe that’s the only place they could put it. But that’s expecting a lot out of your visitors.
  • More than a calendar. One church had their Easter info in an automatic calendar in the sidebar. They had the date and the time, which is better than nothing. But clicking through didn’t give any extra details. This is an opportunity to invite people to your Easter service. Take that opportunity and at least give them something. You could always link to your general visitor page (you have one, right?) to answer basic questions. Or link to your contact page and invite them to ask questions.
  • Get social. Now is also the time to start talking about Easter on social media.

Go Do It

So whether your church is big or small, fancy website or something basic, communication team or solo volunteer, Easter plan or seat of your pants—go put your Easter service times on your website!

(If  your website doesn’t have it yet, don’t worry. I put mine up this morning, then wrote this blog post. Nobody’s perfect.)

Super Sunday: Planning Easter for Your ChurchNeed More? 3 Easter Resources:

  1. Get more Easter ideas with our growing collection of articles, examples, and more.
  2. Check out our book, Super Sunday: Planning Easter for Your Church, for tips on how to plan, promote, and survive Easter.
  3. Go deeper for even more Easter resources and join our Courageous Storytellers Membership Site. You'll get access to downloadable resources including planners, guides, worksheets, graphics, and more.
Post By:

Kevin D. Hendricks

When Kevin isn't busy as the editor of Church Marketing Sucks, he runs his own writing and editing company, Monkey Outta Nowhere. Kevin has been blogging since 1998, runs the hyperlocal site West St. Paul Reader, and has published several books, including 137 Books in One Year: How to Fall in Love With Reading, The Stephanies and all of our church communication books.
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2 Responses to “Are Your Easter Service Times on Your Website?”

  • Eric Dye
    March 20, 2015

    Yes, please!

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  • Tim Pennington-Russell
    March 20, 2015

    Thanks Kevin & CMS!
    Your little prompt was just the reminder I needed to be sure our guests for Holy Week didn’t have to struggle to hear the oh-so-good news, or move on to other churches because it seemed we did not care enough to let them know when and where to celebrate our risen Jesus.

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