Building a website for your church allows you to engage with your community. It may also open some doors to younger audiences who use the internet more frequently. If like many churches, you accept donations, it’s also super easy to set up a donation button on your website. Discover more in our Church website builders review of 2020.
97% of consumers will check to see if a local organisation is online. Picture this; you’ve just moved into a new area and you’re looking for your local church, what do you do? You’ll probably use a search engine to track down your nearest church.
If your church doesn’t have a website, you could be missing out on a lot of potential members.
Most churches won’t have much time or money to spend on building a website. That’s why using a website builder to build your church website is going to be your new best friend! You won’t need any prior experience or coding skills to build a church website.
1. Wix (Best Overall Website Builder)
|✔ Easy to use||✖ Unable to change templates once your site is live|
|✔ Free plan available||✖ Free plan includes Wix branded adverts|
|✔ Mobile-friendly templates|
Wix is my all-time favourite website builder, not just for church websites. It’s an extremely popular platform, offering an easy-to-use interface for beginners. Because of its drag and drop nature, building a website is extremely simple and can be done in a matter of minutes.
Wix’s templates are free to use and include a wealth of church websites for you to choose from. If you’ve never seen a line of code in your life, you needn’t worry. It’s a case of choosing elements you want to include on your website like text boxes, images and videos, and dragging them where you want them to appear.
Although Wix’s templates aren’t just for church websites, they do include some handy features. For example, you can add donation buttons, contact forms and even start a blog. People can keep up-to-date with the latest events and learn more about your church.
If you want to include a map to your church, you can add one, pinpointing your location and contact details. Wix offers a free plan, so you can try it for free, and keep your website for free, for life – which is why it tops our list of free website builders. However, I would recommend upgrading to a plan that allows you to connect your own domain and remove Wix branded adverts, to look more professional.
2. SquareSpace (Best for Designs)
|✔ Beautifully designed templates||✖ Pricing plans are more expensive than some other website builders|
|✔ Great features||✖ Not as beginner-friendly compared to Wix|
|✔ Easy to use|
SquareSpace offers some really awesome designs that are guaranteed to wow your website visitors. If your website is image-heavy, SquareSpace can definitely handle the load. Although it’s not as beginner-friendly as the likes of Wix, it’s still simple to use and requires no coding skills.
Squarespace doesn’t have any church-specific templates, but it does have community and non-profit site templates. You can select the specific features you require, such as donations, and Squarespace will display any matching templates.
Pricing plans start from £10 per month, but allow you to connect a custom domain and include a free SSL certificate. The extra money you dish out on SquareSpace is definitely worthwhile. Their features are pretty awesome for a variety of industries and include 24/7 support and website metrics.
Once you sign up to Squarespace, you can upgrade or cancel at any time, you aren’t tied into any contracts. If you do have any developer experience, there’s the option to edit the HTML and CSS of your template directly, offering even more creative flair opportunities.
3. Weebly (Best for Budget)
|✔ Cheap pricing plans||✖ There aren’t any church-specific templates|
|✔ Offers good scalability||✖ Doesn’t offer as much creativity as other website builders|
|✔ Drag and drop builder|
If you’re on a budget, Weebly is my recommended website builder for your church website. It offers simple yet professional theme designs which are all mobile-friendly. If you’re not looking for as much creative freedom as Wix, Weebly is a suitable platform.
Weebly doesn’t offer a search function when it comes to their themes, so looking through them can be a bit tedious. However, they do have category selections to narrow your search down a little. there aren’t any church-specific themes or non-profit ones, but their selection is fairly small, so it shouldn’t be hard to find a suitable design.
Weebly has a free plan which gives you 500MB storage and a free SSL certificate. It does contain Weebly branding, but their cheapest plan coming in at just £4 per month will remove this.
Unlike Wix and SquareSpace, Weebly doesn’t offer specific features for each of their themes. You’ll need to preview the themes beforehand to see if they contain the features you’re after, like donation pages, and go from there.
4. Sharefaith (Best Church-Specific Website Builder)
|✔ Selection of templates with specific features included||✖ Not as beginner-friendly as other website builders|
|✔ Other services on offer||✖ More expensive pricing plans|
|✔ Church-specific templates|
Sharefaith offers many services related to churches. Included in these services are a church website builder, donation services, church graphics, live streaming, church mobile apps, and worship software. If you’re looking for all things church-related, this is what I recommend.
Sharefaith’s website themes are all dedicated to churches. You won’t have to search through to find the best template as they’ll all be suitable. There’s a wide range of templates to choose from, and you can try or preview any of them for free.
Although their themes are pretty design-focused, they aren’t a comparison against SquareSpace. However, they do provide plenty of built-in features, similar to Wix, and allow you to share sermons.
If I had to pick a flaw with Sharefaith it would be their pricing. The membership plan which grants access to their website builder comes in at $45 per month, which is around £35. The pricing plans are billed annually and include free web hosting, the ability to switch templates and offer a donations platform.
5. Ministry Designs (Best for Customer Support)
|✔ High quality and knowledgeable customer support||✖ Very expensive|
|✔ Easy to use||✖ Features available with other website builders|
|✔ Includes blogging tools|
Ministry Designs is unique in the fact that their team all have church ministry backgrounds. This is obviously a good thing if this is the industry you’re in and you need specific support. Their support is excellent and I couldn’t rate them highly enough.
However, they are extremely expensive. You’ll need to fork out an upfront fee of $1000 dollars to get started, plus $20 per month. Unless you have the budget to cater for Ministry Designs and are serious about your church website, this may not be the most suitable platform.
Saying that their website templates are geared towards church websites and offer some cool features. These include blogging tools, video backgrounds, donation pages and more. There should be enough features to get you started and see you through your church website.
On the other hand, other website builders like Wix and Squarespace that do offer church templates or non-profit themes, also offer similar features for a fraction of the cost. You won’t be tied into a contract, but you’ll need a healthy investment, to begin with.
6. Nucleus (Best for All-in-one Services)
|✔ Good customer support||✖ Expensive pricing plans|
|✔ Great for beginners||✖ Doesn’t offer much creative freedom|
|✔ Drag and drop design|
Over 115,000 people are using Nucleus to create and maintain their church website and services. You can try their services for free for 30 days. Their services include a website builder, sermon videos and social media integration, 100% donation retention, and unlimited 4K stock videos.
Their website builder offers a drag and drop functionality, making it user-friendly and easy to build your website. There’s plenty of third-party app integrations and their services allow you to reach out and get engagement from social media followings.
Nucleus’ customer support is very similar to Ministry Designs. They absolutely know what they’re doing and they’ll help any way they can, including video tutorials and support when building your website.
However, much the same as Ministry Designs, they aren’t cheap. If you pay annually, you’re looking at $99 per month which works out at $1188 over the year. Alternatively, if you pay monthly, it hikes up to $125 per month.
7. WordPress.org (Best for Experienced Individuals)
|✔ Wide range of themes and templates||✖ Additional web hosting required|
|✔ Extensive plugins||✖ Not recommended for beginners|
|✔ Unmetered creative design|
Although it’s not technically a website builder, I feel I have to mention WordPress.org on this list. WordPress.org is a self-hosted platform so you’ll need your own web hosting and domain name. Most web hosts support 1-click installs of WordPress, and hosting starts from as little as 80p per month with Hostinger.
The beauty of WordPress is that the world is your oyster. There are hundreds of themes available via WordPress itself, or you can download themes from places like ThemeForest where experienced developers upload them for your use (at a small cost).
WordPress has a huge library of plugins so you can really make your website your own. However, you do need to be somewhat experienced in coding to get your head around the platform. Saying that there are WordPress plugins specifically designed for page builders which you can view here.