Top Webs Design

Maximizing your web effectiveness

Mar 01 2012

Advantages of a CMS Church Website

Top Church Websites designs custom content management system (CMS) websites for churches and ministries. A state of the art CMS church website has many advantages over other types of websites that churches have traditionally used. The predominant type of church website in existence today is a static website. A static website is a site in which each webpage is constructed separately and contains both the design and content. Static websites can be constructed based on a design template used by many other sites or they can be custom designed. In general, the content of a static website can only be updated by the web designer using professional software, such as Adobe Dreamweaver. Reliance on web professionals to update a church website can be expensive and it is difficult to keep the site up to date. Adding speciality features to a static website also relies on custom development by web professionals. Today, a static church website is essentially outdated and inefficient.

A CMS church website is a dynamic site in which the design and the content is separated. The content is stored in a database. The webpages are dynamically generated from the design template and the database content when a visitor requests the page with their web browser. The operation and updating of a CMS church website is controlled by software running on a web server. The content management system websites that Top Church Websites creates use PHP software with MySQL databases and run on Apache web servers using the Linux operating system. A dynamic CMS church website has many advantages over a static church website.

The biggest advantage of a CMS church website over a static church website is that the CMS software allows church staff or volunteers to easily update the website content. The updating of content is simplified because the CMS software is designed to be accessed through a web browser rather than professional software. Since the content is separate from design in a CMS website, updating of content is as easy as working in a word processor. Well designed CMS software, such as that used by Top Church Websites, allows different levels of access control to updating the website. Thus, the site administrator can designate various types of users, such as Author, Editor, Publisher and Manager, each of which has different permissions regarding updating content.

For example, the content that an Author or Editor creates, must be approved by a Publisher or higher level user before it is actually published to the website. This allows multiple people to be easily involved in updating the sections of the website that they are responsible for. The end result is distribution of the website tasks and more comprehensive and up to date content. Content publishing by the church staff relieves the necessity of paying a web professional to continually update content. However, since the CMS software is constantly being updated to deal with security threats as well as changes in web browsers, software languages and database operation, minimal monthly maintenance and support fees are required to keep everything running smoothly.

The separation of design and content in a CMS church website, also leads to another advantage. The redesign of a static website would generally be almost the same price as the design of a new website. However, since the content and design is separated in a CMS church website, the design can be changed with virtually no change needed in the content or the CMS data setup. Thus, a new design can be created, giving an entirely new look to the church website for about half the price of an entirely new site. Smaller changes in the design would take even less work.

Other advantages to a CMS church website include the availability of a wide range of functionality and special features to enhance your church website. The access control mentioned above makes possible the creation of webpages that can only be seen by Registered users. Thus, you can easily create members-only sections of the website that are invisible to non-registered users. This section could contain things such as church directories, specific church ministry and members-only information and downloads that you do not want available to the general public. As the CMS church software used by Top Church Websites is constantly being improved, new functionality and special features will be made available to our clients on an ongoing basis.

The custom content management system (CMS) church websites created by Top Church Websites will prepare your church to communicate God’s message today and in the future. There is no reason to continue to use outdated static church websites or inferior templated church CMS systems. Communicate the message that God has given you with a powerful custom CMS church website from Top Church Websites.

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