We’ve been working with Perth Baptist Church in Scotland over the past year on the redevelopment of their website. We were approached in early 2019 as the platform the existing site was built on was being discontinued.
The Church asked us to suggest a suitable alternative and assist with the building and population of the new site.
The original Perth Baptist website was updated using a tool called Adobe Business Catalyst. Adobe announced in 2018 that this service would cease in early 2020.
The Church needed a replacement website content management system (CMS) that can be updated easily. They also wanted a way to host sermons online that wouldn’t eat too much into their hosting space allowance.
Inspired by other Church websites from around Scotland, they favoured a simple, minimalist design that steers users to the information that’s important to them.
Solutions for Perth Baptist Church
We started by assessing what the most popular content was on the existing site using stats from Business Catalyst. This information informed content decisions on the new website, such as the pages to link from the homepage.
We encouraged the development of the new website using WordPress as a CMS. Our main contact had previously used this system for their own business website so it made sense to make use of this existing knowledge. WordPress is also free to install and easy to learn.
The site also uses Divi as a theme. Divi provides a powerful drag and drop interface allowing for the quick setup of interesting and user-friendly pages with blocks.
We worked closely with Perth Baptist throughout the project to discuss the best way of presenting information, using many of the content blocks available.
Content review and development
We collated all the content and structure information in a Google Doc and Sheet respectively which helped guide improvements to both.
We also conducted keyword research using Google Ads to ensure the new content included words and phrases used by those looking for the Church online. This, in turn, serves to improve the performance of the website on search engines like Google.
Perth Baptist previously made their sermons available to the congregation using a Dropbox folder, but they found the size of files led to their account quickly filling up.
They now use SoundCloud to host the sermons as the annual paid plan allows for unlimited uploads and embedding of sermons on pages. They used a WordPress plugin to display details of individual sermons, improving the overall user experience.
It’s important to monitor how users interact with a site to ensure it’s performing well and they can find what they’re looking for easily. This information can help inform future improvements to navigation and page content.
The launch of the new website in early 2020 coincided with the Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak around the world. This period of lockdown saw people consigned to their homes and social distancing encouraged. It also saw a ban on mass gatherings, leading to the temporary closure of schools and Churches, amongst other things.
Many Churches switched to streaming services and holding virtual prayer meetings online. Perth Baptist Church set up a new YouTube channel and also incorporated a Zoom meeting plugin so that users could access private meetings quickly. We worked with them during this period to set up an online church section with all the relevant links.
Work with us
We have worked on a number of church websites over the years, providing guidance and training for those responsible for keeping them up to date. We offer a discount for charitable organisations as well. Get in touch to see how we can help you.