I’m always talking about branding. You probably get tired of my mantra. Branding is the story (or promise) behind who you are. I hope you as a Church/Ministry knows what your story is.
But I’ll save more on that for another day.
Have you considered who your web hosting is associated with?
Every year I watch the Superbowl ads and the GoDaddy ads pop up. I find them degrading, not funny and opportunistic. So why do so many churches use them!?! I can’t imagine any church who wants to be associated with that brand. But they are.
Here’s 7 tips on picking a good web hosting package for your ministry:
- Association and Branding-friendly. It’s what we just talked about. The cost of associating with a brand that is “anti-morals” is far too high for a church. Or if they gain most of their income from pornographic websites. Change your hosting package now! Or you’re supporting their marketing.
- Allow you to Move easily. Some hosts register your domain in THEIR name, not yours. It makes it difficult to switch for any reason. We got caught with our first host that we used for our PinPoint website almost a decade ago. It took the threat of legal action for them to allow us the “permission” to move OUR website. Crazy.
- Good Tech Support. Make sure they support you and want to help. Toll-free number and live chats. In fact, if you can get 24/7 service that’s perfect. And if you can get domestic call centers it’s even better (and less frustration).
- Easy to update, change and add unlimited emails. This is a no brainer — but many hosting packages require you to contact them to make changes. Some need you to put a request in, and then wait. And wait.
- Upgradeable. Be sure that plug-ins are available so that you can add components to your website as needed. E-commerce is a perfect example. You may want to add that later.
- Included Analytics. The ability to see who comes to your website, what keywords are used, where they’re coming from, when they come, how long they stay on which pages, etc. This is worth hundreds of dollars!
- Low cost. You shouldn’t pay much more than $150/year for all your hosting needs.
I’m sure there are other things too, but this is a good start. I don’t tell you these to scare you or to give you a sales pitch. There are lots of alternatives. We do offer a package through a well-known, large, reliable host. If you buy it through this link, you’ll get a great deal — and (in full disclosure) you give us some revenue.
Let me know if we can help in any way — or if you have additional questions! Or leave a comment below.