How to Build a Church Website for Under $200 (or less)
A Website is Worth Having!
Having a website for your church is a great way to let future visitors know about your church and how you serve the community. It’s also, a terrific way to keep current members up-to-date on what’s going on in the church.
You can spend thousands of dollars having a custom website built (some have), but you don’t have to. Instead, you can build a fantastic site that stands out and do it for less than you might have imagined. In fact, you can build a website using WordPress and do it for under $200.
For Under $200, Really?
Although the cost of building and implementing a church website can cost thousands of dollars, believe it or not you can do it yourself. In fact if you are willing to put in some work for your church you can do it for approximately $150-$200. Don’t believe me? Then read the rest of this article and I will make you a believer!
The average costs associated with building your church website are:
- Domain Name – $15 (Per Year)
- Hosting Service – $85 (Per Year)
- WordPress Theme – $80 (One-Time-Cost)
“One Important Note:” Designing Your Church Website
Although I have not included this as a step, this is the hardest part of the process and should be considered before you spend any time building your church website. The designing process involves things like:
- What the site will look like, layout, colors, etc.
- What pages will be part of your website, such as ministry pages, church calendar, etc.
- What will be included in the menu system that visitors will use to navigate your website.
Anyone can build a website, but creating a site that is user friendly and appealing takes thought and patience. I would strongly recommend that you spend some time reading this article on “Website Design” and this guide on “How to build a website” before performing the steps below.
Steps to Creating a WordPress Website
- Buy a Domain Name
- Buy Hosting Service
- Install WordPress
- Configure WordPress
- Choose a WordPress Theme
Step 1. Buy a Domain Name
The important first step is coming up with a website name or address for your church website. The three primary extensions are .com, .net and .org. Since churches are primarily non profit organizations, I recommend you select a name with a .org extension, which was created for non profit entities. To find out more about domain names checkout this article by ChicagoSouthSEO
Step 2. Buy Hosting Service
This involves renting space on a server to store the files associated with your site, such as your webpages, images, videos, and any other files that help make up your church website.
Many hosting company will have a promotional price, that provides a discount for the first year. Some will also throw in the cost of the domain name for the first year as well. Bluehost does this on occasions.
Note: *The promotional price is for the first year only and renews at the regular rate.
Step 3. Install WordPress
Installing WordPress is not as hard as it use to be. Most hosting companies use some form of automated process to install the files. For instance, Bluehost currently uses a program known as the MOJO Marketplace. Mojo is a “One-Click” program that allows anyone from novice users to experienced developers to install WordPress.
The video below shows you how to install WordPress using MOJO:
Step 4. Configure WordPress
After the initial installation of WordPress there are a few setting changes I recommend to ensure that your church website is operating at its best. Some of the changes will make your website more secure and others will make adding your content, pictures and videos much easier.
During this step, you will also have the opportunity to install WordPress plugins. Plugins are additional programs that you can install to enhance WordPress and provide your website with greater functionality.
Here are the plugins I high recommend that you install:
- Audio Player
- BackUpWordPress Backup Plugin
- Contact Form 7
- FV Simpler SEO
- Google Analytics Dashboard for WP
- Google XML Sitemaps
- Robots Meta
Step 5. Choose a WordPress Theme
A WordPress theme determines the look, style and layout of your website. Themes make designing your site much easier. You need not be a developer or have a lot of technical skill to install and make changes to a theme. WordPress even grants the ability to store multiple themes and switch between them with a few clicks.
WordPress comes with a handful of pre-installed themes. However, you may want to install another theme that is more attractive and useful. There are thousands of free themes available online, but the better (premium) themes cost.
The price can range from $10 to $80. Here is an article that reviews the top church themes for 2015, titled “55+ Best WordPress Church Themes 2015“
Now obviously I have gone through the process pretty quickly and the actual time spent doing this will take a little longer but these are the steps. If you repeat these steps you too will be able to build a website for your church.
In addition to this article, check out my “Guide on Building a Website”. This article and the guide will be more than enough to allow you to create a church website.
If along the way, you get stuck, use the contact form and ask me a question. I will help you as best I can.
Hire Me to Build Your Website!
If you’d rather not tackle the project of building your church’s website, please feel free to contact me. It will cost more than the $200, but I assure you your church will get a website that will be well-designed, user-friendly and well worth your investment.
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