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Archive: MyCom Articles

Innovative online practices to engage your members during Lent. Photo illustration by Kathleen Barry, United Methodist Communications.

Online engagement ideas for Lent

Lent is a time of reflection. Here are some creative ways churches can engage members and potential visitors during Lent. Read More

Essential podcasts for United Methodist Leaders

Podcasts give us levity and wisdom while we're waiting around. Here's 12 United Methodist podcasts covering the gamut of communications, technology, leadership, lectionary, young people's ministry and more! Read More

How to write a terrific sermon title and why it matters

If your sermon is like a sandwich, then the title is the bread — not the condiments. Here’s how you can create a terrific title. Read More

How to rock your mobile website

Fewer people are viewing your website via desktop these days. Use these tips to help navigate the road to an awesome mobile-first web strategy. Read More

Creating excellent content pieces to help attract your community is essential, but all that work can be for naught if your audience never reads it. Image by IPGGutenbergUKLtd,

4 pitfalls that make people ignore you

These common pitfalls can make your marketing fall flat. Use these tips to keep your audience engaged. Read More

The United Methodist Church offers a variety of branding and advertising resources. Photo by Kathleen Barry, United Methodist Communications.

Making the most of your advertising dollars

Even with limited funds, you can learn how to effectively share the good word about your church. Employ these strategies from successful advertising campaigns. Read More

Online forms for dummies: Easy tips to save time and money

Easily collect emails, donations and volunteer registrations. This isn't up for discussion. Start saving time, money and the environment today. Read More

Drastically increase your email audience

Churches can use opt-ins to gather new names for their databases, send emails and connect with people. Start maximizing the effectiveness of your ministry with opt-ins now. Read More

11 mistakes to avoid in church website design

If you already have a fabulous church website, congratulations! If you don't, use these tips and you will soon have an attractive, clear and engaging web presence. Read More

5 steps to spring clean your church website

Inevitably, people will search church websites and come across dead pages, bad links and outdated information. Don't let a bad online experience keep people from visiting your church in person. Read More

Make a perfect landing on your website

You point people to your website, but do you have landing pages for specific ministries or missions or special emphases? Read More

What is private online? Why should churches care?

It seems every month, another huge hack lights up the Internet. All of that raises questions for churches. What is private online? How do I ensure my privacy? Read More

5 Google Analytics tools for the mission of the church (part 2)

Google Analytics has a bevy of tools that will help you refine and adapt your church website to be an extension of mission instead of another brochure. Read More

Analytics 101 for churches. Why measure? What services?

Without analytics data, everyone in web ministry is guessing in the dark as to how effective your church website is. If you have a church website, then you need to... Read More

10 tips for keeping your website or blog fresh

Updating your church’s website or blog can seem daunting, especially if you lack inspiration or time. Use these 10 ideas when you are stuck in a rut. Read More

8 DIY security hacks to protect church and family on the web

Granting your church and children web access opens a Pandora’s box of content that you don't want them to see. Here are several free security measures you can implement. Read More

How to draw searchers to your church with terrific title tags

Optimize your titles, so your church website can be found. Follow these tips and you are sure to see an increase in search traffic to your website and, ultimately, visitors... Read More

Ironclad Internet security software for church and family

Protect your loved ones from damaging online content by using security software designed to keep them from accessing the wrong places and connecting with the wrong people on the web. Read More

Think you know the Web? Think again: Web myths debunked

New technology that measures second-by-second and pixel-by-pixel behavior is proving that clicks are pretty poor indicators of actual engagement. Here’s what churches can learn from these new findings. Read More

5 church website examples optimized for search engines (SEO)

If someone searching the generic term “United Methodist Church” cannot find your church website, then you haven’t optimized for search. Here are examples you can tweak to optimize five... Read More

Web hosting reviews for churches

Shopping for a new web hosting solution is tough. So instead of delving into the exhaustive web hosting abyss, we considered the church's needs first and offer several affordable solutions. Read More

Graphic design trends for churches

Like most artistic expressions graphic design goes through changes that reflect the spirit of the times. Learn about and view several examples of the most current trends in 2014. Read More

Online security for churches

Churches produce and store large amounts of information. What happens when computers crash, viruses attack and hackers hack? Are you prepared to stop these problems or repair a broken system? Read More

Avoid computer nightmares: Free and paid backup solutions

Even if communications is already a priority in your church, might there be opportunities for growth? Find out. Gather a team and perform a church communications audit. Read More

Are you designing a new website for your church? Does your outdated website need a new look? Consider these web-design trends. Image designed by Freepik.

Web design trends

Are you designing a new website for your church? Does your outdated website need a new look? Consider these web-design trends. Read More

Why online courses? Tips for course ideas and setup

Though physical training should never be replaced, developing an online education component is easier than ever and a great opportunity to reach out to those who cannot (or will not)... Read More

Use Wordpress to build a great church website

This affordable content management solution will enable your church to create a website that is professional, provides great user experience, and is current and interactive. Read More

Improve your church website’s search results: SEO Guide

People search for everything. Does your website offer answers to questions that people are asking? If it does, can people find them? Read More

Illustration of man pointing to a mobile device with youtube on the screen. Illustration by Mohamed Hassan,

Optimization and cards in YouTube (Part 2)

Optimized YouTube videos increase your channel's rank in search results. Here are a few tips and advanced techniques for adding keywords, call to actions and more. Read More

5 sections to include on your church website

Your website is more than a resource for members. It’s also a fun place to show potential visitors how God is at work in your church. Learn the essentials... View

Choosing the best website hosting service for your church

Whether you made the plunge long ago or are delving in for the first time, picking a website hosting service can be a nerve-wracking experience. We want to help you... Read More

5 Steps to building and managing a digital music library

Having a digital music library will make finding the right music for your church’s needs more efficient, and it will keep your church’s music assets safe and secure. Read More

How churches use pay-per-click ads for seasonal outreach

By using pay-per-click (PPC) ads that appear in search results, you can deliver outreach and seasonal messages directly to nonmembers looking for what your congregation is offering. Read More

5 Websites/apps that are “new places for new people”

Here are five sites (new places) where people of faith can reach out to others in their community (new people). Read More

How user-friendly is your website?

A cardinal rulein developing a good website is to remember that it is for the user, not the creator. Here are three ways to make your website more usable and,... Read More

Make your move to a mobile website

The number of mobile Internet users is rapidly growing, so the need fora mobile version of your church's website is increasing each day. Read More

10 New Year’s resolutions for bloggers

As the newness wears off, it's easy to let blogging slip to the bottom of the "to-do" list. However, don't stop. These tips can make blogging easier and more effective. Read More

Placing your church within an arm’s reach

Mobile messaging and applications are the latest innovations your church can use to reach a wider audience. In today's busy world, this technology enables you to reach people while they're... Read More

Empowering children’s ministry through technology

One way to encourage dedicated time focused on Jesus is to use technologiesreadily accessible in many homes and libraries to connect with lessons. Read More

A nature scene from Lake Junaluska taken August, 2013. Photo by Kay Panovec, United Methodist Communications.

Practicing the means of grace through your website

Learn how your church website can guide individuals to practicing the "means of grace." This will enhance individual spirituality, as well as the spirituality of the whole church. Read More

Web ministry: Privacy and permissions

Does your church have a policy that describes how it uses staff and member information online? Does it honor others' creativity by complying with copyright laws? Read More

Free software downloads: office and ministry tools

Software, graphic design tools and music licenses can cost churches thousands of dollars. However, many programs have a free and open source equivalent. Read More

9 tips for starting online small groups

Online Bible studies can bring group members together for instant interaction without the logistical hurdles of travel time, babysitters and work schedules. Read More

Give your church website an SEO tune-up

Search-engine technology is constantly changing. As long as your church has an indexed website, your search-engine-optimization (SEO) work will never end! Read More

5 minutes of (unwanted?) fame

Before you post video and photographs from your church's events online, use these best practices. Read More

6 ways to avoid online plagiarism

Know the value of citing and linking to put the kibosh on unintentional plagiarism. Read More

C-M-S spells website maintenance relief

A Content Management System (CMS) is a software program that enables a person with little or no programming skills to create and manage a website's content. Read More

Is Google the future of evangelism?

Once we break down the science of SEO into chewable bites, you will see a wealth of outreach possibilities. Read More

Make your homepage sizzle like bacon!

Look at your Web site as though you were a seeker. Ask yourself, "Based solely on this website, would I want to go here?" Read More

Make your web ministry user-centered

To avoid the common RFA or "Ready-Fire-Aim" approach, we suggest you follow the user-centered design process. Read More