28
May
Posted in Church Resources by Mike

So I’ve added quite a few new church websites to my portfolio lately and I’m pretty happy with how they all came out. I’m just about burned out creatively though so I will probably take a few new clients this month and then not take any more for the rest of the year. I wanted to post some random musings though:

1. I’ve just discovered FLICKR and I love it (yes I’m about 10 years behind)! Here are some great christian designs Ive found http://www.flickr.com/photos/51204974@N00/favorites/

2. Sites everywhere are stealing my content AND graphics from mychurchwebsite.com! Grrrrr. PLEASE don’t steal my content. I wrote and designed it all myself and even though its not THAT great, its still my own :-) I find it hilarious when they take personal content I wrote that only applies to ME and post it on their site.

3. Gospel Software contacted me and asked me to be an affiliate. I just might do so… but if anyone wants to check them out, they are at http://www.gospelsoftware.com. Let me know if you have a good experience with them. The people behind it are real great guys, that I know. They offer:

  • Directory › An online photo directory & member database for your church.
  • GuestView › A complete guest management solution for your church.
  • SongBook › Manage your church’s worship songs and set lists.

4. I made this book thing a while ago and never finished it http://www.noperfectpeople.com/book/. It was supposed to be a way to reach people with the gospel in a creative way but I never got inspired enough to continue work on it. If anyone has any ideas or wants to try their hand at it, let me know. We really need creative way to do so online. There isnt much out there that I’ve seen that’s any good.

5. I always get asked if I can recommend anyone good to design a church site when I am not taking clients. Although I can’t recommend anyone you do get what you pay for, so be careful. I would stay away from anyone offering full flash sites. I would stay away from anyone that doesn’t have a portfolio readily available to view. I would stay away from anyone that is offering the world to you because no one is the best at EVERYTHING.
 
6.  I can’t believe I’m still number 1 in google and yahoo for church website design! Its been like 3 years since I got up there! It is truly a blessing :-)
 
7. My IPHONE is my best friend, is that so wrong? :-p My favorite games right now on it are: Peggle, Bobby Carrot 2, Flight Control, and DoodleJump.

  


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4
Oct
Posted in Church Resources by Mike

All summer I’ve been working on getting my newest online store up. It’s consumed me. Which is why I’m happy to announce that my new worship video loop store, Christian Collages Video, is officially online! I really hope everyone likes what I’ve made and finds the video loops useful for their church. Its hard making videos that are universal in appeal, and on top of that, able to be used as backgrounds for worship in a way that doesn’t distract the audience, but instead enhances the worship environment.

For now, these videos will not be found elsewhere online. They will only be sold on my website.

 

On the church website front, I am still not taking any new clients. I’ve only taken 10 this year and I’m sorry to all the churches I’ve had to turn down. I still love web design but right now its not my passion. I will probably be focusing more on my worship video loops store in the coming months so I’m not sure when/if I will take new website clients. If i do take any, it will be posted on my website www.mychurchwebsite.com.


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23
Jan
Posted in Church Resources by Mike

I have invested in the creation of a new volunteer management tool for my church website clients! There is nothing like it out there for the general public, which is what forced me to pay to have one created. I am thinking about selling it to all churches who use joomla as their CMS, perhaps later in the year, if their is enough demand for it. The features are: Read the rest of this entry »


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23
Jan
Posted in Church Resources by Mike

I found a great little free program that will convert your sermon to a great sized mp3 file. You can follow the instructions here: Read the rest of this entry »


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10
Nov
Posted in Church Resources by Mike

After creating over 70 church websites over the past 2 years, each with their own different needs, I want to share with you some thoughts on what I’ve seen that hopefully will help those building a new church website. So here are both my observations and tips:

1. By far, the most popular page on a website is your calendar. So make SURE your calendar page looks nice, is easy to navigate, and fits in with the design of your site.

2. Audio sermons are actually the 2nd most popular part of a church website (if they have them). So its a good idea to do some research if you don’t know how and start getting your sermons online. 98% of church sites I’ve been to are giving them away for free. Personally, I’m against churches trying to sell their sermons online to download. It doesn’t cost the church anything to put up an audio file. And a lot of times you want to send the sermon to a friend, who will NOT want to pay for it. Read the rest of this entry »


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29
Oct
Posted in Church Resources by Mike

A lot of people ask me how I got both my websites www.christiancollages.com and www.mychurchwebsite.com both to the number 1 spot in google, yahoo and msn, for the keywords I wanted. Well it wasn’t by accident. I put alot of time and study (and NOT alot of money) into optimizing both of them. The stats so far are like this: Read the rest of this entry »


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29
Oct
Posted in Church Resources by Mike

I would love for any church who is interested in church worship backgrounds to visit my site at http://www.christiancollages.com/ and download a free worship background

Just shameless self promotion… I know! :-)


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28
Oct
Posted in Church Resources by Mike

I often get asked 2 questions ever since I’ve stopped taking new clients. One is, “can you refer me to someone who does what you do?” Because I only know my business and I don’t know the business practices of other companies and don’t want to accidentally recommend someone who might end up not being a good company, I really can’t answer this question for anyone. I just think what you want to look for is that companies client portfolio. If you cannot easily find it on their site, skip them. Any company that makes great looking websites would want to show them off. If you can’t find them, chances are they are hiding them.

Once you have found someone who can make you a nice looking church website, THEN its time to look at and play around with their Content Management System.

So here are some quick tips on finding a good church website company: Read the rest of this entry »


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28
Oct
Posted in Church Resources by Mike

First of all, I’m NOT a writer! I’m just someone who is passionate about design and is trying to use the gifts God gave him to help other churches put something out there on the web that helps them appeal to both their members and visitors interested in going to their church. Read the rest of this entry »


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28
Oct
Posted in Church Resources by Mike

I ALWAYS suggest to churches they add SOME graphic to every page they have on their site, if they can. Its not that the graphic will enhance the content. Its that for the end user, psychologically it creates more interest in the content of the page as it doesn’t create that “overwhelming” impression one can get when they see a page which is full of JUST text. 

There are quite a few sites that allow you to download images to use on your website for free. You do NOT want to take images from other church or business websites and use them on your site. That is stealing. If you see an image you want to use from another website, you should write to that site to ask for permission first.

The following sites are the best for free images to use on nonprofit websites:

http://www.sxc.hu/
http://free-stockphotos.com/
http://yotophoto.com/
http://www.freeimages.co.uk/
http://www.photocase.com/photobrowser.asp
http://www.morguefile.com/
http://www.freefoto.com/index.jsp
http://www.stockvault.net/gallery/
http://www.pixelperfectdigital.com/free_image_archive/
http://www2.woophy.com/map/index.php

The following sites are the best for very cheap, high quality images to use on your church website:

http://www.istockphoto.com/
http://www.dreamstime.com/
http://www.bigstockphoto.com/
http://www.fotolia.co.uk/

The following sites are best for high quality images in which you can buy a subscription to to use on your church website:

http://www.photos.com/
http://www.photoobjects.net/
http://www.comstock1700k.com/
http://www.jiunlimited.com/
http://www.ablestock.com/
http:/www.clipart.com


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