Religious Organizations Elevate Their Website Communications With LightCMS
Churches, Ministries, Synagogues and Other Religious Institutions Benefit from LightCMS’s Ease of Use, Elegant Design and Affordability
OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla., Nov. 13, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — LightCMS, a NetSuite (NYSE: N) company that provides a powerful, yet easy-to-use cloud-based content management system (CMS), today announced continued strong growth in the use of LightCMS by religious organizations, with thousands of churches, ministries, synagogues and others relying on the hosted CMS solution to present high quality websites effectively and affordably. For these organizations, LightCMS addresses the critical need to communicate with members, leaders, and communities with an attractive, informative web presence that can deliver information on services and events, offer archived videos of services, accept donations, sell goods, and outline programs all around the world. Just as in the business world, religious organizations rely on websites as their focal point of communications in both deepening engagement with existing members and attracting new members to the community.
Ease of use in managing and updating content is essential as most religious organizations have non-technical staff and volunteers maintaining the websites. With an intuitive drag-and-drop interface, LightCMS allows religious organizations to delegate site responsibilities across a broader user base to help ensure that content is updated in a timely manner. With built-in capabilities for responsive design, LightCMS enables religious organization websites to adjust automatically to mobile devices to drive engagement among those accessing a site over a smartphone or tablet. To learn more about LightCMS for religious organizations, please visit www.lightcms.com/church-and-ministry.
“Religious organizations are fundamentally about communication, and an engaging website is a prerequisite to fulfill their mission while having the greatest positive impact,” said Justin Cowan, Director of Content Management for LightCMS. “The religious community has long been an important vertical segment for LightCMS, and we’re seeing continued growth as organizations look to upgrade from legacy sites that are difficult and complex to maintain and capitalize on the web as a vital communications channel.”
Besides an external website, religious organizations also use LightCMS as an intranet to consolidate and manage content, documents, and records needed for operations. A blogging tool built into LightCMS is ideal for publishing news and articles, while an event calendar makes it easy to showcase upcoming events. Multimedia management capabilities make it simple to share photos, videos and podcasts anywhere on a website. LightCMS for religious organizations is distinguished by:
Ease of use. With a very low learning curve, LightCMS enables religious organizations to empower non-technical users with responsibilities to maintain and update text, images, links, videos, blogs and more.
Unlimited users. With unlimited user accounts included in the base price, religious organizations can engage more people in site updates, and use role-based permissions to designate certain people to manage certain pages.
Online donations and sales. The built-in LightCMS donation element makes it easy to accept online donations, while religious organizations can raise funds by selling goods through the LightCMS online store.
Registration and payment. With the LightCMS drag-and-drop online form builder, religious organizations can easily offer and capture registrations for events and programs and securely accept payments if needed.
Affordability. LightCMS pricing begins at $19 a month, including free hosting and all features.
Bethany First Church of the Nazarene and Council Road Baptist Church are among the hundreds of religious organizations running LightCMS.
Bethany First Church of the Nazarene (www.bethanynaz.org), attracting a weekly congregation of 2,500 members, has continually enhanced its original implementation of LightCMS to be an attractive, informative website for both parishioners and those interested in joining the church. Replacing a custom-built site that was difficult to manage, LightCMS has enabled the church to engage numerous program leaders and volunteers in updating the site, using role-based permissions to govern who updates which pages and helping ensure content is updated in a timely manner. On-demand sermon videos are especially popular among shut-ins and people who may have missed a service or moved from the area. A recent addition of responsive design capabilities by the LightCMS services team, enabling the church site to automatically adapt to mobile devices, has proven valuable for visitors using smartphones and tablets. Meanwhile, the church has saved substantial printing and postage costs by curtailing what had been up to 3,000 print mailings every two weeks. The church also runs a separate website on LightCMS, www.swazipartners.org, a charitable foundation to combat AIDS in Swaziland. “Our website is the mother lode of information for anything going on at Bethany First Church. Most people visit our website first before they visit the church for the first time, and it’s very important they get a feel for who we are before they walk in the door,” said Bob Miller, Communications Pastor. “The ease of use in LightCMS has made my job much easier because I don’t have to worry about behind-the-scene technical stuff.”
Council Road Baptist Church (www.councilroad.org), with a congregation of 2,000, gave its website a makeover during Easter season 2013 with an upgrade to LightCMS, replacing a customized legacy site that had gone stale after six years. The upgrade includes responsive design capabilities to adjust to mobile devices, which make up an increasing share of the church’s website traffic, and has resulted in an 88 percent increase in unique visitors and large gains in such metrics as page views per session and time on site, with positive feedback from members of the church community. The inviting new site has improved the presentation of information for the church’s ministries in such areas as child well being, unwed mothers, Bible studies, addiction recovery and a mission in Uganda, while LightCMS’s ease of use has enabled the church to enlist non-technical volunteers in updating the site without relying on those with significant website experience. Council Road selected LightCMS over WordPress, which it considered overly complex with a risk of crashing, and helped ensure a quality site with implementation and training services from Collision Media. “An outstanding web presence is one of the church’s top priorities, almost as important as having a pastor. The website is your face, and like a business, a church needs a good face,” said Brad Mardis, Director of Communications. “One reason LightCMS is a great platform is because the learning curve is very, very low. I can teach a novice how to update the website with text, images, bullet points, links and videos very easily. Plus as a hosted platform, we don’t need to worry about downtime.”
LightCMS is a NetSuite Inc. company that provides a powerful, yet easy-to-use cloud-based platform for creating beautiful websites and online stores. Guided by its philosophy of sophisticated simplicity, LightCMS offers an ideal set of tools for individuals, non-profits, and small to medium-sized businesses who want to communicate, conduct business, and sell products online. LightCMS is also a leading platform of choice for web designers and creative agencies. With industry-leading design flexibility, LightCMS offers designers and developers the opportunity to create custom websites their clients can easily manage themselves.
For more information about LightCMS, please visit www.lightcms.com.
NOTE: NetSuite, the NetSuite logo, LightCMS, and the LightCMS logo are service marks of NetSuite Inc.
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