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Let Your Mouse do the Clicking

telephonoRemember the slogan of the Yellow Pages?  “Let Your Fingers do the Walking.”  While the Yellow Pages still have a place on counter tops and on the bottom shelf under the coffee table, more and more people are letting their mouse do the clicking.

Think of your web address as your “property” online.  What you build on it becomes your store front.  Many small businesses and churches have web sites that they have designed themselves, or by someone who knows a little bit about web design has developed it for them for free.  For some businesses and churches this works just fine.  For many others they are hoping to do better but don’t have thousands of dollars to spend.

One reason why a good church site is important is that when people move to a new place the first place many start church shopping is online.  If they find a nice looking site that is easy to navigate and has a lot to say about the church, it’s already a good first impression.  If not, they may never come through the front doors.

Same with a business.  It’s very important to have a site that looks good and is functional.  Otherwise potential clients will surf, and then drive, to the competition.

In addition to having a professional site that looks good with easy to find information, a web site can also include a blog.  A Blog Site!  This is particularly important for a church.  A pastor can write about;  what God is showing Him, church news, how excited he is that 6 people got baptized last Sunday, etc.  People can also comment on posts, and a conversation can take place right on the site.  New visitors get a feeling for what’s on the Pastor’s heart.  Current congregates feel more plugged in to the church.

For a small business, the blog can be a place to offer helpful hints on how to use a product, or ask for comments.

It’s also part of using the new media to market online.  There is a big rush to combine Twitter, Facebook and Blogs to build an audience.

Ultimately, it’s all about building relationships.  If you have a web site that has compelling content and a way for visitors to participate, then it will help build relationships.  Through those relationships a church can speak (and demonstrate) God’s Love.  A business can cultivate relationships and increase sales.

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