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The Best Church Websites: 1) Have a Memorable Domain Name

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Written by Paul Steinbrueck

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Our theme for July is Level Up Month.  Today (July 13, 2020) we’re excited to be kicking off the 10 Day Level Up Your Website Challenge!

The Challenge is designed to help you “Level Up” your website so it better helps your organization live out its mission online.

The 10 Day Level Up Your Website Challenge includes:

  • A guide to help you figure out the best “next step” to take with your website
  • 10 short, daily training sessions that will explain the 10 most common website problems and show you how to fix them immediately.
  • A private Facebook Group where you will get help and encouragement from the OurChurch.Com team and other Christian website administrators
  • Exclusive offers only available to people doing the Challenge

Join our private Facebook Group to be a part of the Challenge!

And now on to today’s training…

Are you familiar with the 80 / 20 rule?

The 80 / 20 rule (also known as the Pareto principle) is the principle that for many events roughly 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes. In most churches, 80% of the work is done by 20% of the people. For many businesses, 80% of the revenue comes from 20% of the clients.

Over the last 20+ years, we’ve helped thousands of churches with their websites. Through that experience, we’ve observed about 80% of the problems with church websites come down to just 10 common issues.

We have the idea… If we educate, motivate and assist churches on these 10 issues, we could eliminate 80% of website problems.

So, that’s what we’re going to do.

The Best Church Websites… 1) Have a Memorable Domain Name

The first issue we’re going to look at is domain names, because having no domain name or a bad domain name can prevent people from ever getting to your website.

5 Tips for Choosing a Memorable Domain Name

1) Register a domain name! Some small churches with limited financial resources get a free site that doesn’t have its own domain name. We understand many churches are struggling financially, but unless you’re in a 3rd world country and are living off a dollar a day, this is a REALLY bad idea. Free sites have a long website address that is hard for people to remember, often misspelled and terrible for search rankings.  If you genuinely want to reach people in your community, invest the $20-$40 a year to get your church it’s own domain name.

2) Keep it short. Long domain names are also hard to remember and easy to misspell. If your church has a long name, don’t include the entire name in your domain name like firstepiscopalbaptistchurchmontgomery.org. It’d be better to go with FEBCMontgomery.org or even Montgomery.church

3) Go with .org, .com or .church. Most people think of .com for companies and .org for nonprofits. Therefore, if you can get your preferred domain name with the .org TLD, that’s ideal. If your preferred .org is not available, choosing the .com is a good second choice.  .church domains are relatively new option and becoming more common.  Often though those domains not available, so if you have to choose between a really long .org and a good, short .net, .us or something else choose the latter.

4) No dashes. Don’t choose a domain name with a dash in it like first-lutheran-church.org. People have a hard time remembering the dashes, and its difficult to verbally communicate the dashes.

5) Get feedback before choosing. Family of Christ is a Christian School in Tampa whose mascot is the Knights. The domain name FOCKnights.com would have been a bad choice. Before you make your final decision, have a few other people take a look at it.

You can’t underestimate the importance of a good domain name.  To quote Tony Messer…

A domain name is online real estate. It’s where your brand lives. -Tony Messer

quote domain name online real estate

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Free Domain Name – OurChurch.Com makes it extremely easy and affordable to get a great domain name.  If you order your church web hosting by July 14, we give you your first year of domain registration for free!

Comment & Discuss

  • Do you think its essential for a church website to have its own domain name?  Why or why not?
  • Do you have any other advice for selecting a good, memorable domain name?

Other posts in this series:

Level Up Your Website >> 2) Mobile-Friendly

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About the author

Paul Steinbrueck

Paul Steinbrueck is co-founder and CEO of OurChurch.Com, husband, father of 3, blogger. You can follow him on Twitter at @PaulSteinbrueck.

2 Comments

  • Good information. My church has its own domain name and we made it easy to remember. The training is good–even though we have an easy to remember domain name–because it lets me know we did well in choosing. Our site has been so helpful to our members and we have other churches and individuals going to the website to get the Pastor’s bio and other important reference information.

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