Is Your Synagogue Homepage Welcoming?

welcome 2By Molly Ritvo

Your website is the front door for prospective members. They may have heard about your synagogue from their real estate agent when they were shopping for a new home, from new friends at a party or from a colleague at work. And where do they go to check out your synagogue? Chances are the first interaction they will have with you is through your website.

Is your website ready to welcome them and make the best first impression?

Your homepage opens the front door of your synagogue
and tells the story of your community.

Are you giving a warm welcome online?

Below are some easy ways to create a more welcoming homepage:

  1. Create a featured slideshow or video of compelling images from your community that creates a vibrant header on your home page. Think of this area as the trailer for a fabulous movie that draws viewers in to see more.
  2. Invest in high quality photography. When you walk into your synagogue, are you welcomed with a plywood floor and concrete walls, or do you have a marble walkway that leads you to a warm and welcoming entryway? A great deal of thought and money went into your entry area; your website should have the same quality feel. And, that requires high quality photography.
  3. Start telling your story right away. Using words and imagery, show and tell the story of your synagogue. Are your clergy prominently displayed? Is your address & contact information displayed on every page? Is your calendar updated with services times & locations? Think about what first time visitors are looking for from your synagogue and then make it easy for them to find it.
  4. Use Google Analytics. Google Analytics will give valuable information about how your community is using your website and what they are looking for. Once you understand what is most important to your website visitors, you can then deepen the content you are providing. Having Google Analytics will help you cater your website to the needs of your community.
  5. Get a Mobile Website. More and more members of your community are viewing your website on their mobile devices. Is your homepage mobile-ready? If not, you are probably losing potential visitors.

Your homepage is the welcoming area for your prospective members. Just as your front office is filled with welcoming staff, your website needs the same message.

Molly Ritvo is Partnership Development & Digital Marketing Associate at Jvillage Network.