COVID-19: Websites are Free for the First 90-Days

The Best Church Websites of 2019, Non-Megachurch Edition

by | Apr 17, 2019 | Church Websites, Small Church Websites

cover image for the Best Church Websites 2019 post

Ready to build a new church site?

These 20 stellar small church websites are worth studying before you begin.

 

An incredible church website is pretty easy to have if your church staff is large enough to support someone with those gifts and talents. Small churches, though, frequently don’t have as many financial or people resources available to them. That’s one of the reasons we always get excited by smaller churches that have terrific websites. We thought you should see some of them too!

So, here’s what we did. We asked friends, colleagues, our site visitors, and various facebook groups for recommendations of stellar small church websites (with “small” in this case meaning an average weekly worship size of 400 or fewer.) Submissions came in from all over the world. We looked carefully at well over 130 of them, ranking each one based on 6 categories of website effectiveness: church size, design, welcome, discipleship features, local SEO, and speed. (You can learn more about our methodology and criteria after the rankings.)

The 20 church websites below show incredible commitment to their web presence and ministry. We hope that the unique features in them will inspire you with some great ideas for your own church site! Be sure to click the photos to visit each site. Many of these church websites may look different by the time you visit them. Actually, we hope they do!

By the way, while the sites below are awesome, there really isn’t such a thing as “The Best Church Website,” and we can’t possibly visit every one of the hundreds of thousands of possibilities. So, tell us about a site you love that we missed using the form at the bottom. We will be sure to look at them for future updates or articles. You’ll also find a discount code so you can build a site like any of these on Aboundant!

Score: 25/30

Weekly Attendance: 100 people

Tech: Self-Coded

Why We Like It:

Holy Cow! From the video header to the incredibly high SEO score, this site has it all. Its integration of animation and videos brings a modern vibe to the site. Subtle details such as the custom map icon show deliberate thought down to the tiniest details. Incredibly, this site was self-coded. Talk about an ambitious undertaking, given their average weekly attendance is 100 or fewer people. Bravo!

Score: 24.5/30

Weekly Attendance: 160 people

Tech: WordPress

Why We Like It:

Visually stimulating, colorful, and abstract, this site integrates large scripted fonts with colorful overlays to convey a welcoming and fun atmosphere. The site makes excellent use of their branding elements throughout and uses interesting animations to draw visitors further into the site. We would especially like to draw attention to the hover effects on their hero (top) section buttons.

Score: 24/30

Weekly Attendance: 45 people

Tech: Squarespace

Why We Like It:

From the light colors to the airy layout, this site suggests an open and welcoming environment. For a church with an average of 45 attendants a week, they offer a wide range of resources and do an excellent job directing visitors around their site with their hero buttons and simple navigational menu. Fun fact: their highest attendance ever was 70 people on Mother’s Day. To quote them, “It was a landslide!”

Score: 23.5/30

Weekly Attendance: 60 people

Tech: Squarespace

Why We Like It:

If the name Anthem doesn’t create a sense of excitement, their hero section certainly does. We love the active heading backed by an appropriately exciting image. The bright colors and high contrast contribute to the “ready to go” vibe, and their call to action buttons lead you to act on this excitement.

Score: 23/30

Weekly Attendance: 240

Tech: WordPress

Why We Like It:

This high contrast site does an excellent job of using modern web design principles to create a new and cool atmosphere. Beyond their effective use of design, Anchor does a wonderful job communicating with their congregation and new visitors. They maintain an active blog and publish featured “Stories” that invite guests into a close-knit community.

Score: 23/30

Weekly Attendance: 100 people

Tech: Squarespace

Why We Like It:

This church makes getting involved easy. From their individual ministry sign ups to their Plan a Visit pop-up menu, they make excellent use of both forms and their event management system. This makes getting involved or in touch a breeze for guests.

Score: 23/30

Weekly Attendance: 30 people

Tech: WordPress

Why We Like It:

From their animated loading icon to the illustrated gospel, Plus Life makes excellent use of visual imagery throughout their website.  Their video header provides real insight into their worship and gathering time. Additionally, their easy to navigate menu and sign up platform make it easy for anyone to get involved.

Score: 22.5/30

Weekly Attendance: 220 people

Tech: WordPress

Why We Like It:

New Life Presbyterian Church does an exemplary job of integrating their brand in a modern way. Their white branding combined with black, blue, and orange accent colors work together and create an open, spacious site. Additionally, their simple and compact menu is easy to navigate, making their site very user-friendly.

Score: 22.5/30

Weekly Attendance: 90 people

Tech: FaithConnector

Why We Like It:

We were impressed by the extensive resources Asheville Church has to offer. They have an App, free downloads, recommended sites, and a merchandise store. The site itself is equipped with Google Translate, an easy way to get started with bilingual websites. Their well-kept events calendar makes it easy for visitors to plan their involvement.

Score: 22/30

Weekly Attendance: 150 people

Tech: WordPress

Why We Like It:

We love the huge colorful hero image featured on the homepage of St. John’s site, which creates an immediate sense of inclusiveness. They continue this colorful theme throughout the site through high-quality, internally-sourced photographs that add a personal touch to and provide real insight into their building, congregation, and ministries.

Score: 22/30

Weekly Attendance: 190 people

Tech: WordPress

Why We Like It:

Consistent branding and the immediate call to action for guests is what makes this site really stand out. Their homepage is packed with easy ways to get involved and learn more. Additionally, they have done an excellent job using in-house photography to provide a window into their worship and fellowship times. Pay close attention when you visit to their simple web copy, which makes quick reading a snap.

Score: 22/30

Weekly Attendance: 160 people

Tech: ShareFaith (WordPress)

Why We Like It:

Northside Christian Church does an excellent job of welcoming guests with its wide array of resources for visitors. From the “Plan a Visit” page to “Pizza with the Pastors,” they have done a good job making involvement as easy and comfortable as possible.

Score: 21.5/30

Weekly Attendance: <150 People

Tech: WordPress

Why We Like It:

This site uses bright colors and gradients to make their content pop. Their navigational header and home page are simple and easy to navigate. Additionally, their website features an active blog that includes the weekly bulletin, podcasts, sermons, and what they call “At Home Content.”

Score: 21.5/30

Weekly Attendance: 185

Tech: WordPress

Why We Like It:

This site uses bright colors and bold fonts to make their content pop. Their navigational header and home page are simple and easy to navigate, and their Q&A page connects with real-life concerns people have. In the video header and elsewhere, this church makes excellent use of videose to feature their worship experience and individual congregation members.

Score: 21.5/30

Weekly Attendance: 160

Tech: WordPress

Why We Like It:

We were excited to see the variety of guest-friendly resource groups that Village Church facilitates within its community. Their homepage features groups such as a playgroup, divorce care group, and an Wednesday after school program. Giving these groups a prominent place communicates that the church cares about people regardless of where they are in life. Their site is welcoming and laid out well, using bright colors and internally-sourced photos to draw visitors in.

Score: 21.5/30

Weekly Attendance: 100 people

Tech: Wix

Why We Like It:

For a church meeting in a high school, Life City Church does an excellent job directing visitors about how to get involved. From its pop-up that urges visitors to plan their visit to its group registration platform, this church is on top of making it easy and simple to get involved within their congregation. Additionally, their site features a simple, well designed logo which sets the design precedents for the rest of their site.

Score: 21.5/30

Weekly Attendance: <100 people

Tech: Weebly

Why We Like It:

River Market Community Church features high quality, internally-sourced images of their community in worship and fellowship. Their site puts their white background to good use, making the whole site feel airy, open, and inviting.

Score: 21/30

Weekly Attendance: 100 people

Tech: Squarespace

Why We Like It:

They had us at the logo: the Seattle Space Needle is cleverly nested inside the cross. By taking a landmark building and combining it with a classic Christian symbol, they integrated a sense of traditionalism with contemporary Christianity. Additionally, their site is clean and easy to navigate. The hard edges and flat design elements really make their content pop.

Score: 20.5/30

Weekly Attendance: 190 people

Tech: Muse

Why We Like It:

One word: bold. From the bright orange branding to the large scripted fonts, this site stands out. As you move down the homepage, patterns and bright colored gradients are integrated into all of the design elements. Even the photographs of the pastors have bright colors in background. The name “God Chasers” sets an active precedent, and their lively website lives up to it.

Score: 20.5/30

Weekly Attendance: 350

Tech: Squarespace

Why We Like It:

Faith Christian Church does an excellent job of integrating traditional fonts with scripted variations, creating a contemporary feel throughout the site. Its unique choice of mint green works to make this site’s buttons and headers stand out against their backgrounds. The individual clips featured in their video header provide a good view of their worship setup and create a warm welcome.

Score: 20/30

Weekly Attendance: <80 people

Tech: Squarespace

Why We Like It:

After you view dozens of fairly traditional website designs, it’s refreshing to find a non-traditional website for what appears to be a non-traditional congregation. This church’s menu-like home page reflects the fact that they frequently meet at restaurants and bars. It’s a great reminder that YOUR church website doesn’t have to look like everyone else’s!

Runners Up: 10 More Bonus Sites

We’re grateful for all of the churches who responded to our call for recommendations and who responded to questions like, “Can you confirm your church size?” Here are ten more websites that deserve a little recognition. If you’re still looking for more after these, here is last year’s list.

Still want more? Here's our list of the Best Church Websites for 2018.

Want a Church Site Like One of These?

You can build it on Aboundant!

Every one of these sites could be built on our powerful platform. Because of its flexible, powerful, modular design, our theme – Divi – can be used to create almost any site you can dream up. Here’s more info…

Our Methodology and Criteria

Our Research Process

We checked out dozens of websites suggested to us via email, on our website, or on social media. Each site was scored on a spreadsheet using the criteria below. We gave them a ranking from 1 to 5 for each criteria, then totaled up the scores (with 30 being the maximum possible). All together, we ranked well over 100 sites that seemed promising. Now, on to our criteria…

1. Church Size

We only considered churches with an average weekly worship attendance under 400, since the United States average is still around 75-80. Smaller churches often have to sacrifice to prioritize their web ministry and should be commended. The smaller the church, the higher they ranked. Remarkably, only 2 churches with an average over 200 made the final cut!

2. Design

We looked for sites that were laid out in a manner that is easy to digest, with consistent fonts, colors, and other brand elements. In addition, we confirmed they looked good on various screen types (i.e. had responsive design) and were aesthetically pleasing.

3. Welcome

Here we considered how welcoming each site is to guests. We looked for an obvious invitation into the life of the church, friendly language with a lack of jargon, and warm, inviting media.

4. Discipleship

Next, we looked for sites that encourage users to deepen their relationship with Christ through participation in the life of the church. Important factors included having an engaging description of ministries, sign-up forms, a clear way of connecting with guests, and an active church calendar.

5. Local SEO and Global SEO

Without a doubt, this was the toughest criteria to rank well in, and almost no church scored perfectly. We used the MOZ Local (https://moz.com/local/search) search tool and GeoRanker (https://seoapp.georanker.com/) to rate the strength of each church’s local local findability. Then we checked their global score using SEO Analyzer (https://neilpatel.com/seo-analyzer/). The final SEO score was an average of the local and global scores. This includes having good location indicators on the website as well as being cross-referenced on social media and online directories. For more information about how to improve this score, check out our post How to Get Found on Google.

6. Speed

We used Pingdom tools (https://tools.pingdom.com/) to calculate the average loading speed of each church’s site. The tool calculates load time, page size and number of requests.

No Aboundant Sites

There are some wonderful church websites on our Aboundant network that would rank highly, but we wanted to maintain impartiality in our rankings. So, we excluded these sites from the start.

Recommend a Small Church Website

We’ll be keeping an eye out for many more small church websites that are amazing. So that we can keep our list updated and growing. tell us about a site you think we really should check out.

 

  • Please enter a value less than or equal to 400.
    If a church worships more than 400, chances are they have the resources to pull off a great church website. We are more interested in honoring churches that are able to do it with less.
    Make sure you get next year’s results in your inbox.


Make Your Own Amazing Church Website

At Aboundant, we believe you deserve choices when it comes to your church website.

Like to Do It Yourself?

Our theme, Divi, has dozens of fully-customizable layouts that will make things easy to get going quickly. You can also build your site from scratch using the many drag-and-drop modules. We even have an exclusive, premium theme created for United Methodist churches. Contact Us if you want one of these approaches set up for you to try out for a month.

Need a little more help getting started?

Making a beautiful, full-featured church website is incredibly easy using Launch Pad, our quick-start system that gets you going in as little as 10 minutes. Click here to start your 30 day trial.

Ready for a custom site?

If you’re serious about your digital ministry and your online presence, maybe it’s time for you to significatly upgrade your website. Let’s chat about your needs and dreams.

Want a discount? For a limited time, you can get 15% off the first year of our annual plans when you use our discount code: Thrivein2019 (Thrive) or Transformin2019 (Transform).

By Emily Adams

Follow UnBound, The Aboundant Blog, to get more useful posts like this one.

You may also like…

Aboundant Now Provides 500% Carbon Neutral Hosting

Aboundant Now Provides 500% Carbon Neutral Hosting

On this 50th Earth Day, Aboundant is pleased to announce that for the past three months we've been offsetting the carbon emissions of our hosting by roughly 500%. We pledge to continue offering carbon-free hosting and look forward to providing more details about our...

read more
5 Best Reasons to Pick a Church Website Company

5 Best Reasons to Pick a Church Website Company

Is SquareSpace, Weebly, Wix, or GoDaddy Your Best Option? Maybe not. Many searches for church websites will return links for SquareSpace, Weebly, Wix, or GoDaddy. Why? A simple reason is that these companies have large SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and design...

read more
How to Make Sure Your Church is Found on Google and Bing

How to Make Sure Your Church is Found on Google and Bing

5 Simple Steps to Take to Get Discovered Online Every week, people in your area search for a community of faith to visit. Will they visit yours? Only if you take the necessary steps to ensure you will be found. Here are the 5 key SEO (Search Engine Optimization) steps...

read more

0 Comments

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This