Case Study: Updated Functionality for Church Website

Case StudyWhat do you do when the sermon player stops working and one of your faithful members needs to hear the sermons while in rehab?

How to you add the weekly announcements to your site when the blog page has been excluded from the original design?

These were the two questions that finally jump started the process to update the back end design of the Community Bible Church website.

I had been on the committee back in 2013 when we hired a design firm to create a church website for us on the WordPress platform. Once the site was complete, I

Getting Started with Contact Form 7

Getting Started with Contact Form 7

The Importance of a Contact Page

If you have any aspirations to generate income from your blog, then providing an email address and/or a contact form on your site is a must. If your primary goal is ministering to others, you will also want a way for your readers to respond to you in a personal way. A contact page shows credibility and allows other bloggers, businesses, and readers to connect with you in a user-friendly manner.

Setting Up Contact Form 7

I recommend installing the plugin Contact Form 7. This is another instance where the best instructions are available

Understanding Site SEO Settings

Site SEO Settings using WordPress SEO by Yoast

SEO is an acronym which stands for Search Engine Optimization. The folks at HubSpot have a fun GIF which provides this definition,

“It refers to strategies and techniques to help a website rank higher in search engine results. . . . the core goal of SEO today is to address the questions your audience is searching for.”

Sometimes it is best to go straight to the experts for tutorials and guidance. I’m recommending that path for this post. The owner and writing staff at WPBeginner are a wealth of knowledge and detailed step-by-step instructions. They have been one of my

Understanding and Using Google Analytics by Yoast

How to Set Up Google AnalyticsGoogle collects basic page tracking data from your website. When you have connected your site via a tracking code, you’ll see data in most of your Google Analytics reports, including traffic referral information, user characteristics, and browsing information.

Create a Google Analytics Account

To create a Google Analytics account for your domain, visit the Google Analytics page and sign in to your account. Guidelines from Google are found here.

How to Sign Up for Google AnalyticsThen click on the Admin menu item to the next page.

How to Sign Up for Google AnalyticsOn this page, you need to click the drop down arrow next to the account name to reach the

WordPress Plugins: Choosing Wisely

WordPress Plugins-What Why and HowPlugins add to the functionality of your WordPress site. This functionality can occur on the backend of your site that you access through your dashboard (like analytics or SEO) or on the frontend of your site that your visitors can see (like sliders or widgets).

WordPress Plugins Provide Functionality

I recommend that you add the following functions to your site:

Spam Blocking: Akismet

Security: Wordfence

Site Backup: UpdraftPlus

Analytics and SEO: Google Analytics by Monster Insights and Yoast SEO

Social Media Following: Simple Social Icons

Social Media Sharing: Sharify or Genesis Simple Share

Subscription: MailChimp for WordPress or Genesis eNews

Customize the WordPress Footer

Making the Most of the WordPress Footer - 31 Days to Success with WordPress - MerriDennis.comThe footer – the line of text at the very bottom of each page – is an often-overlooked piece of real estate on your site. Most themes include a standard bit of text in this section including a copyright, the theme name, and a link to your log in page.

Customize the WordPress Footer

To show that you are paying attention to every detail, you can customize this text on your site. You can keep the copyright and include information about your designer or theme. Delete the link to your log in page and consider including your email or link

How to Choose Fonts for Your Website

Choosing Fonts for Your Website

Choosing Fonts

Choosing the right fonts for your website effects how visitors feel about you and your site and how they understand your content.

The fonts you choose along with your color choices help determine how visitors perceive you and your message.

For many years, font selection was very limited. Now, any font found at Google Fonts can be used on your site and allow your personality to shine.

Serif and Sans-Serif Typefaces

First, understand the difference between a “serif” and a “sans-serif” typeface.

A serif typeface has small lines at the end of the stroke on the characters. In

How to Choose Colors for Your Website

How to Choose Colors for Your Website - 31 Days to Success with WordPress - MerriDennis.comRules to Choose Colors

Before you start choosing colors for your website, you need to know a few simple rules.

  1. Be consistent. If you already have a logo and brand colors, plan to use those for your site. If you think your current colors will not be a good fit for your new site, then you will want to make your color changes across the board.
  2. Consider your target audience. Many studies provide insight into the best colors to use depending up upon your audience. Blue is good for both men and women. Men prefer blue, green, and black. Women

How to Choose a Premium WordPress Theme

How to Choose a Premium WordPress Theme - 31 Days to Success with WordPress - MerriDennis.comUse a Reliable Source for Your Premium WordPress Theme

As I said in yesterday’s post, WordPress theme choices require answering several questions. Sources for premium themes abound. But you want to make sure you are getting a theme from a reliable source and with a solid support system in place.

As I shared in this post, I recommend themes from StudioPress built on the Genesis framework. Several other developers produce themes for the Genesis framework. You can see the list in the Resources section at the end of this post.

The Benefits of a Framework

Frameworks are well supported