The Audit


In 2021, about 8.4% of Americans moved.
According to Moving Trends in 2021: Moving Industry Stats & Data |
20% of these people moved out of state.
How would they likely find a church in their new place?

Here is my audit persona:

I am an older man, so I pretend that my wife and I will move to be closer to two of our children,
They attend separate churches, so we probably won't attend either church, 
just to give them their own space, AND to have a life of our own.
So, I am going to look for a church via a national or state website.

As an older person, I have certain website-attitudes that web-techs should be aware of:

1) All I can see is what's on the page in front of me. I'm not good at scrolling left or right.
2) An email icon doesn't work for me because I don't know how to set it up on my computer, 
     and this doesn't interest me in the least. 
     I need the email address printed, character-for-character.
3) I absolutely despise cookies-stuff. 
     If an icon flashes up, demanding I have to accept, I leave that website.
4) If I have to check-in, to see a church's Facebook site, I'm gone, 
     I'll suspect that church is a closed-rank, ingrown conclave, uninterested in receiving visitors.

That said, here is the audit, done with percentages to further anonymize the Denomination.
I worked from the national website, using the Home State of the national HQ.
Percentage numbers indicate what percent of churches had each particular listing.
(I obviously don't know if all the churches in any State are listed).

1) Name of church                                  100% accounted for
2) Address                                                 100%
3) Pastor's name                                        96%
4) Phone # * (see note below)                83%
5) email                                                        37%
6) Facebook                                                  1.2% (FB address inserted into the website position)
7) Website                                                   27/16%                      

Here's where it gets tricky...
Yes, 27% of churches listed websites, but of those listing
41% of those websites were not functioning websites.

So, only 16% of the churches in that state, listed on the National site 
had functional websites that could be reached from the National website..

* I'm sure that many more churches published their phone numbers,
but because their website info pushes the phone number off the screen,
I only gave credit for phone numbers I could clearly see at first impression.

This matters for geezers like me. 
The phone number should be columnized on the left of the screen,
then it cannot be pushed off the screen, leaving someone to think the church 
doesn't want phone calls. 

Additionally, this national website, keyed to one state, listed churches from three states
other than the intended state - Hawaii, Illinois and Nevada.

Also, not included in this count:
The 20 churches in the state that are called 'satellite', 'campus' or 'franchise' churches. 
When a church has one website for all churches and one phone number and/or one email, 
I sent only one email, because someone other than that church pastor decides 
which phone calls or which emails are important. 
It can also be construed that these pastors aren't very interested in public contact.

The Host State's HQ listing was also not counted.

Audit performed August 22-23, 2023.
eric j rose

PS, additionally, in the number of my emails that have been returned as undeliverable, 
I estimate that 2-5% of email addresses, gathered somehow from the internet, are not viable.
I get more 'mailer-daemon' notices than I get affirmations for prayer about my request.
Not that I expect these affirmations, (but I do enjoy them).

Yet another thing to consider.