Church Web & Social Media Research

January 25, 2011 by

Last week LifeWay Research put out two reports on how churches use technology. The first covers how churches use the web and the second covers how churches use social media. The reports were covered by USA Today. LifeWay blogger Ed Stetzer also offers his own recap.

Among the interesting stats…

  • 47% of churches actively use Facebook.
  • 20% of churches use social media tools included in church management software.
  • 40% of churches don’t use any social media tools.
  • Bigger churches are more likely to use Facebook: 81% of churches with 500 people or more use Facebook, compared to 27% of churches with fewer than 50 people.
  • 78% of churches have a website.
  • Less than half of those churches use their site for interactive purposes (prayer requests, event registration, streamlining church processes).
  • 15% of churches update their site more than once a week.
  • 40% update it once a week.
  • 42% update it once a month or less.
  • 7% update it once a year.
  • Limited staff time (46%), limited financial resources (41%), limited volunteer time (39%) and lack of interest or demand (35%) keep churches from providing more online content and services.

Lots of interesting stats to dive into and the USA Today story also includes a quote from Vince Marotte, one of our Regional Network Coordinators:

“Our Web page is an extension of everything we do,” says Marotte. It also offers live chat online prayer available a few hours a week, “just like when you go to church and there’s someone there to pray with you.”

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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10 Responses to “Church Web & Social Media Research”

  • David Bunce
    January 27, 2011

    I don’t know if anyone is interested, but I have put the above data into an infographic. I hope this is a useful resource to anyone who wants to communicate the data in a more visual fashion:


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    • shane brown
      May 9, 2013

      david, can you send me that link? when i click on it it is broken…

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  • Justin Brackett
    February 1, 2011


    Thanks for posting this info. I really don’t see anything surprising! Thing that worries me is that most churches still see the way they have communicated for “all those years” as both efficient and cost affective.

    I wonder how much of (39%) and lack of interest or demand was caused by 40% update it (facebook) once a week.

    Justin Brackett

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  • Ben
    February 4, 2011

    47% of churches actively use Facebook.
    40% of churches don’t use any social media tools.

    This is probably a dumb question, but then again, I’m a designer and not a statistician. So would this mean that of the remaining 60% of churches that use Social Media, only 47% use it actively? Thanks

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    • Kevin D. Hendricks
      February 4, 2011

      No, I don’t think the 47% is a subset of the 60%.

      60% of churches use social media. 47% of churches use Facebook. 13% of churches use some social media other than Facebook. And 40% don’t use social media at all.

      At least that’s my understanding. Hit up Ed Stetzer if you’ve got more questions.

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      • Ben
        February 4, 2011

        Sweet. That break down helps. I’m not sure when I’d use this data, but it’s nice to have numbers/stats like this to mention whenever the opportunity arises. Have a great weekend.

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  • Steph
    June 26, 2017

    I’m using this data for a short-ish research paper I’m writing about social media being used in religious organizations. Thanks!

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