Top 15 Church Website SEO Tips To Increase Visitors 2023

Table of Contents

Filling your church website with lots of new viewers can be a challenge.

In this article, we will discuss how to increase website visitors with church website SEO strategies.

Let’s get right into Tip 1.

Church Website SEO Tip 1: Create A Google Search Console Account

Google Search Console, also known as GSC is a free tool from Google that helps you monitor your website and improve Google search performance.

This tool will help you see where your website ranks on Google, which pages of your website perform best, home many people see your website on Google every day, and how many ultimately click on your links.

If your website suffers from a penalty or issues with indexation, the tool will notify you. It will provide information on how to fix it, along with relevant advice. You can even submit sitemaps to help Google know about new content faster.

To create an account follow the link provided HERE and create your free account. 

Church Website SEO Tip 2: Use GSC To Optimize Your Church Website SEO

After adding your website, you should see a screen like this: 

You can use this data to better understand what church SEO content Google likes and what content it doesn’t. 

To show up when people search more, it’s important to optimize church website SEO. To do this you need to understand the different components of your page. This includes meta titles and meta descriptions. 

These are what’s displayed in Google search engine results pages (SERPs) and other search engines and can help increase your click-through rates in Google, among other things. If Google searchers notice a relevant or interesting title tag, they’ll click on it. 

Use the data in Google Search Console to help improve the number of people finding your website. 

Church Website SEO Tip 3: Create A Google Analytics Account

Google Analytics is a free tool from Google that shows information about how users interact with your church website. This includes data and metrics like how many visitors you have, where they’re coming from, how long they stay, and how they found your church website online.

For example, if half of your church website visitors are using mobile devices, it’s a good idea to optimize your church website SEO for these users. 

If most people who visit your church website arrive via search engines, you should make sure all your church website pages are optimized for relevant keywords. 

Google Analytics will tell you what is important for your website and to your audience so you can make changes to your website they will love.

When users on your website love what they find on your website they will stay longer. Google tracks how long people stay on your website and will rank you more highly if you keep visitors on your website longer than other similar websites. This will improve your church website SEO rankings and boost the traffic coming to your church website from Google Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs).

You can sign up for a Google Analytics account for free by visiting the Google Analytics Website and creating an account.

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Church Website SEO Tip 4: Do In-Depth Keyword Research

Your next most important goal is to be found by those searching for a church online. When you optimize your church website SEO, it must be optimized for the right keywords.

There are two elements to this: figuring out how many people are searching for your church (this is called Search Volume), and what keywords they are looking for. To do this, you need to do keyword research. 

Keyword research involves finding words or phrases that describe what your church offers and its activities. 

How to improve Google search ranking for churches is greatly helped if these keywords are not only related to church ministry but also common enough to attract a large audience.

To get people to your church service you may include terms like “worship service near me” on your page. 

(You may not have noticed, but this whole blog is written around very specific keywords to be sure you can find it on Google.) 

Keyword tools like SEM Rush or KWfinder will help you discover how many times each month any word or phrase is searched on Google. You will then be able to decide if you should include it on your website, or as the subjects of sermons or Bible studies.  

If you would like to learn more about keyword research, I discuss this very deeply throughout my 200+ page eBook you can find on Amazon: The Digital Ministry: Reaching The Ends Of The Earth Without Leaving Home 

(If you purchase the eBook through our website we offer a 10% Discount Code HERE.)

Church Website SEO Tip 5: Create More Content

A church’s next most important goal is to convert visitors into leads. When people visit your church website, how will they be encouraged to give their contact details? 

You need high-quality church SEO content (this means blogs, written content, and video sermons)– but don’t just stick it on the homepage! Take the time to create keyword-targeted pages for your church sermons, blogs, service, and programs.

Make sure your church website is easily viewable on mobile devices. This is known as “mobile-responsiveness”. 

The problem is, in 2020 only 53% of churches have a responsive website design. This means 47% of churches are losing out on potential web traffic because they don’t have a responsive web design. 

Get familiar with the latest trends in church website design to help improve your church website SEO.

Church Website SEO Tip 6: Keep URLs Simple

It’s important to keep church website URLs simple and easy to remember. 

This will help people find them on search engines, whether they already know the page title or not. 

Google will also search your URLs to find keywords. The easier your keyword can be found in the URL, the more likely Google is to rank you well on the search results. 

Bad Example: www.clickmill.co/9/12/2021adoid;lkneoia 

Example: www.clickmill.co/church-marketing

Example: www.clickmill.co/church-growth

Clear church website URLs are also likely to boost click rates if users notice a church URL in an app or on social media. Your click-through rate is the percentage of people who see your page on Google and click through to your website page. 

3 clicks per 100 impressions = 3% click-through rate (CTR)

You can find your CTRs from Google in your Google Search Console account. 

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Church Website SEO Tip 7: Optimize Your On-Page SEO

What is on-page SEO? On-page church website SEO refers to the content on your church website. You On-page Church SEO Content includes:

  • Keyword optimized titles
  • Keywords in the content
  • Inbound links
  • Outbound links
  • Word count
  • Content quality
  • Etc. 

After identifying what your church’s goals are, create relevant church page titles that include relevant keywords and what users can expect to learn in the article.

Optimize church pages with keywords, but not too many so that it becomes overkill or spammy! Remember to keep things reader-friendly and simple.

Blogs or informational pages rank better with higher word counts. Shoot for a word count of at least 2,000 words per post. 

If you have keyword-targeted sermon pages where you embed your sermon videos, you can also include an automatically generated transcript to increase sermon page word count. This will increase your Google ranking for every sermon.

Also, be sure to only have one sermon and transcript per website page. This means each sermon has one keyword, and each page has one targeted keyword. This keeps Google from getting confused by too many keywords on the same page. 

By optimizing your church on-page SEO you will increase website traffic. 

Church Website SEO Tip 8: Don’t Keyword-Stuff Church Website Pages

When church website SEO is handled poorly, church pages become filled with keywords, and sentences are stuffed full to get the most church SEO ‘juice’. 

This can be confusing for users trying to find the real information they’re looking for. 

Be wary of overusing the same words over & over again!

Church pages can lead to problems when there’s an overuse of keywords on the page. This is called “keyword stuffing”. The result of keyword-stuffing will often be irrelevant content that focuses more on church SEO than providing useful information that visitors want in their search for a church.

Church Website SEO Tip 9: Create Content That Stays Evergreen

Evergreen content is content that stays relevant over a long period. I recommend creating church pages that are evergreen to ensure your hard work creating content continues to generate website traffic for years to come. 

When writing content about events or subjects that change over time, your website pages will become outdated. Event pages should be removed or “no-indexed” after the event is over. Other technical content that may change as the technology or process changes will require frequent updates to keep current. Try to avoid this type of content if possible. Old pages and content that no longer get visitors are called “dead pages”. Google de-ranks church websites with too many dead pages.

Creating evergreen content also means you don’t have to go back and update as much outdated content.

Best Practice: When writing evergreen content, stick to topics regarding theory, ideas, and technical topics that don’t change. The good news is that the Bible and theology never change, so any content written around Biblical principles will be good forever!

Just be sure not to include dates or other time-sensitive references.

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Church Website SEO Tip 10: Use More Internal Links

An internal link is a hyperlink that takes users to another page within your church website. Google likes to see people moving through multiple pages of your website and this can’t happen if you don’t give people links to additional pages they may find valuable.

Here is an example of an internal link:

If you love getting free traffic from Google using church SEO, you’re going to love our ultimate guide about the $10,000 PER MONTH Google Advertising Grant. Google gives churches and nonprofits $10,000 per month to advertise on the Google Search Engine.

(Be sure to add 2 or 3 internal links on each page of your website.)

Church Website SEO Tip 11: Open A Google My Business Account

Church Website SEO Google Map Pack

No church website is truly optimized for Local SEO without claiming your Google My Business profile.

Google My Business is the tool that allows your church to show up on the Google Map Pack. 

You can find the Google My Business website HERE and claim your organization’s listing. 

Once you have claimed your church’s Google My Business profile, fill in all relevant information such as church address, hours, and phone number. Having accurate information in your GMB account means you can stay at the top of local church search results forever!

Church Website SEO Tip 12: Incentivize Church Reviews

To receive the Local SEO benefits of the Google Map Pack, you must have at least 10 church website reviews. This increases the likelihood that Google will show you your church at the top of the Google Map Pack.

By encouraging church members to leave a testimonial about your services and community, you will accumulate website reviews from real users that will help you take the #1 Google ranking.

Church Website SEO Tip 13: Optimize SEO Meta Tags & Titles

Meta titles and meta descriptions are essential for church website SEO. 

These appear in search engine results pages (SERPs) as snippets of text on your church website listings.

These components of church website SEO are particularly important because they can significantly influence how well you attract people using search engines to your church website.

Take a look at the picture and see which churches have shorter or longer meta titles. Ask yourself which descriptions are more appealing to people looking for a new church to visit. 

Review your website meta-titles and descriptions to increase your church website rankings and visitors to your website. 

Church Website SEO Tip 14: Expect Church Website SEO To Take A While

As church website SEO becomes more and more competitive, church organizations are going to need to start investing more time into church website SEO strategies. 

There’s no fast way to do it – it just takes patience and determination to succeed!

Of course, church ministry marketing is about much more than church SEO. Your goal should be to create content that provides useful information for your church website visitors. 

By providing content your visitors find valuable you can eventually get people to trust your church enough to come back to your website or visit in person.

When people find the content they love, they stay on the page longer (called dwell time or time-on-page) and come back more frequently. 

Google’s algorithm tracks all of this information (and more) to determine who will show up at the top of their search results page.

Don’t get discouraged, this can take months of consistent effort before you begin to see the results. 

If you would like help with your church website SEO, schedule a free strategy session with Clickmill today. Our #1 priority is to help church leaders like you reach more people, more effectively.

Claim your ministry marketing strategy session today!

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Church Website SEO Tip 15: Respond to Comments & Reviews

There’s no question that getting reviews & comments on your church website can be incredibly helpful for gaining more traffic. Google loves to see people engaging with your website. 

But Google loves it, even more, when they see your team respond promptly to comments or reviews on your website, Google My Business Account, Yelp, and anywhere else you have a digital presence. 

Google sees prompt replies like good customer service.

This means being aware of how comments are posted, where comments are posted, and how often church leaders are responding to these comments. 

Creating a routine check of these comments and reviews is a great habit for increasing your church website reach and ranking on the Google Search Results Pages (SERPs).

By implementing these 16 church website SEO tips, you will begin to increase the number of people finding your church each month.

That brings us to the end of this article. 

We hope that you find it helpful and useful and that God will bless your efforts as you seek to grow your church.

Which tip will you implement first? Let us know in the comments!

2 comments

    1. Hey Jerry,
      Thanks for your comment.
      Yes, the safest ways to create ministry content is to do so by addressing things that don’t go out of date. For example, ideas, theories, concepts, or truths that don’t change over time. Of course, ministries have a massive advantage in this area because the bible hasn’t changed in thousands of years, so any content on this (that is also properly keyword targeted) will bring traffic into your ministry website for along time to come!

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