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Church Website Design Secret for Better Search Rankings

Written by Paul Steinbrueck

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Is your church using its weekly sermons to maximize the church website’s search rankings?

I want to share an idea with you that could dramatically improve your church website’s search rankings.

We’ve known for years that publishing original content is one of the best ways to improve search rankings. Each piece of content has the potential to rank well in search engines for specific keywords. Links to each piece of content and social shares of that content improves the search rankings not only of that specific piece of content but the entire site.

Fortunately, your church is probably already creating a lot of original content. Even the smallest church usually has a sermon as a part of its weekly gatherings.

This is probably not news to you. In fact, maybe you’re already posting audio of your sermons on the church website. If so, kudos to you! That’s great! However…

How sermons are posted to a church website can dramatically affect their search impact.

Consider the way most churches post sermons to their website…

Usually, the title of the sermon is displayed on a web page, and the title links to an audio file of the sermon. That’s great for human use, but guess what… search engines don’t have ears.

In this scenario, the only thing search engines see is the text title of the sermon. As a result, these sermons will have little impact on search rankings. Additionally, if all there is for each sermon is a link on an existing page to the audio file, there are no new pages being published.

There is a much better way to publish sermons from a church SEO perspective. To start…

Design your church website with a sermon blog.

Then each week, publish a new post for each sermon. The sermon posts could be as simple as a 3 sentence summary and a link to the audio. The important thing from an SEO perspective is that there is some text there for the search engines to read. If you’re ambitious, there are all sorts of other things that could be included in each post:

  • A summary of the sermon
  • A link to the audio of the sermon
  • Video of the sermon embedded in the post
  • Discussion questions
  • One or more next steps or calls to action
  • Quotes from the sermon
  • Scripture references used in the sermon
  • Any graphics or videos used to promote the sermon series

If your church website uses WordPress, blogging functionality is already built into it. You just have to create a “Sermons” page that lists your blog posts. If you’d like some help with your church website design or church SEO, we’d be happy to discuss it with you, no cost or obligation.

The important thing is that your website is designed with the functionality to help you live out your mission online.

Great web design without functionality is like a sports car with no engine. -Paul Cookson

Post a comment:

  • What do you think of the idea of using a sermon blog to improve a church’s search rankings?
  • Does your church already do this? Are you aware of other churches doing this? If so, post a link to an examples.

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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.