Currently if someone is interested in joining a small group at my church and goes online, this is where they look to find a group:
This is how people find a group at The Church at Chapel Hill in Douglasville, Georgia. They go to a page that looks like this:
Which small groups would you rather join?
- Web pages communicate.
- Ours: unfriendly and impersonal.
- Theirs: warm and inviting. Lots of smiling faces.
- Groups are not just names, they are people. Many churches don’t have any names for their small groups other than “Wednesday Night Men’s Group” or “John and Sally Smith’s Small Group.”
- Us: We name our groups. The most popular name was a men’s group that met for breakfast. They were called “MOO,” for “Men of Oatmeal.” Many people noticed and remembered that name and people joined and soon it was full! Some of our groups still have generic names though.
- Them: They name their groups too. Some groups have a name that they keep no matter what they’re studying, other names are the name of the study material.
- Tapping into skilled photographers at the church is a huge win!
- Us: We started a photo team. This would take us to the next level as we don’t do any portrait photography.
- Them: Nice consistent photos, same background, same lighting.
- Search features can be helpful or a hindrance.
- Us:Our site looks the way it does (doesn’t fit the look of the rest of our website) because it is tied into our database that automatically generates the groups. There is a search feature that you can use to find by day, time, demographic, etc. However, if we broke our groups down by category (which our paper directory does), there are only about 6-10 groups per category. It’s very easy to see these groups all at once when they are put on the page with a photo. However, I can see that a search feature would be very helpful for a place that has tons of small groups.
- Them: They already do that. Good job!