Growth is a key goal that naturally as a church you should have. Growing a church in itself requires vision and a strategy. It is not about competition with other churches but more about the mission of the body of Christ and developing the people God has planted in your church. Every now and again our churches receive people as visitors and this is a sign that people around us are open to the function and importance of churches in the community. However, studies have proven that the church loses those visitors due to poor hospitality, poor integration programs and lack of engagement activities.
We define a visitor as a non-member who visits your church during your services, and any non-member that you make contact with even outside your church building, during evangelistic activities like crusades, outreach programs and even those you interact with online. It is key for us to understand that church growth is dependent on how well you convert visitors into members.
Visitor conversion is a process of changing visitors to fully engaged congregational members. The church goes through different stages in this process of converting visitors to fully engaged members of the congregation. These stages are:
- Excellent Hospitality
- New Member Integration
- Member Engagement
These processes will be used to explain the visitor conversion software that will help your church growth efforts.
Since the growth of the church is a process, studies show that visitors usually make their decision whether to join the church or not before the Preacher steps on the auditorium.
The first 10 minutes are critical in ensuring the attitude of the visitors towards your church/ service and those 10 minutes determine whether they come back to your church or not. Several factors determine visitors to come to that decision. For example: preferences – the visitor might not like the location of the church, music, building or they just don’t feel connected to the church and there is nothing much that can be done, not every church is for everybody. However, it is unacceptable to have visitors not staying because of hospitality reasons – for example they were not welcomed properly, no one noticed them to serve them or help them with information and after the service no one followed up on them. You should as a church ensure that this never happens.
The importance of visitors in your church
The purpose of the church is to evangelise the lost and disciple believers. Your church is the place where the lost will come to, seeking to know more about Christ and your church is the place where the undiscipled will come, seeking to be taught and empowered. All these people will come to your church as visitors, therefore the effectiveness and the growth of the church is determined by how visitors are handled. The growth of the church is associated with Jesus’ commission for the church to go and “…make disciples…” (Matthew 28:19).
Your success and passion for church growth does not depend only on the number of people invited to church but on the number retained. Studies have shown that the average church will lose about 10% of their members each year and will only convert about 15% of visitors to full members. This means that a church has to attract the equivalent of about 75% of their church size in new members each year just to maintain their church size. Picture this – if you have a church of 200 members, you have to have about 150 visitors each year just to maintain your church around 200 members. That’s 150 visitors for no church growth.
Research also has also shown that most Christians attend church services during Easter and Christmas holidays. This proves that the average church lacks engagement activities that keep members connected to the ministrations of the church. Without an effective strategy, it is impossible to attain sustainable growth in any church.
This platform will provide your church with access to excellent education and technology tools to boost your church growth efforts.