church web traffic

Organic Versus Paid Church Web TrafficLast Updated: April 1st, 2020

Many churches face the same problem with their online presence. They have built their website, but there is no one visiting the site. This is the number one problem faced by most churches when it comes to their online efforts. Luckily, this is a problem that can be effectively rectified. The way that most churches increase their church web traffic is through search engines. In fact, the majority of websites online get their traffic directly from search engines, primarily Google. But there are different types of church web traffic that you can receive from Google: Organic Traffic and Paid Traffic. Both have their benefits, but work the best hand in hand.

Organic Church Web Traffic

Organic traffic, as the name suggests, is traffic you receive organically and at no charge from Google. To receive any organic traffic whatsoever, your website must be ranking on page 1 of Google for at least a few keywords. The simple fact is that if your website is on page 2 of Google or lower, nobody is seeing it.

There are of course a number of steps you can take to make your site appear higher in the Google Search results, which in turn boosts your Organic Church Web Traffic. This process is called Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

SEO is the process of making improvements to your website, that will make it more visible to Googles crawl bots. There are a number of improvements that can be made to boost your SEO.

SEO Improvements:

  • Page Titles: Your page titles are one of the most important SEO factors on your site, so write a title that matches the Focus Keyword for the page.
  • Meta Descriptions: Give your page a Meta Description that is relevant to the Keyword you are optimizing, and also make sure the description contains your Focus Keyword.
  • Keyword Placement: Write the Focus Keyword into the first paragraph of the page.
  • Image Tags: Tag images that appear on the page with alternative text so they match the Focus Keyword.
  • URL Structure: Include the Focus Keyword in the page’s URL.
  • Word-count: Ensure your page has at least 300 words, because Google loves pages with lots of content.
  • Body Tags: Use headers that contain your Focus Keyword (H1, H2, etc.).
  • Keyword Density: Insert your Focus Keyword into your webpage at least once for every 100 words.
  • Internal Linking: Link to other pages within your site using Keywords as the anchor text.

Once these improvements have been made, you will see your organic traffic begin to increase. However, SEO is a long-term plan, and you will not see overnight results. Google must re-crawl and re-index your site many times for you to see significant results. This can take anywhere from a couple of months to a year, but the long-term results are most definitely worth it. If you are looking for instant results, and want traffic immediately, then you can implement a Paid Church Web Traffic Campaign. 

Paid Church Web Traffic

If you are looking for an instant increase in Church Web Traffic, using Google’s ‘Paid’ feature is for you. This allows you to pay for sponsored content to appear at the top of the Google Search results. This is particularly useful for seasonal events such as Easter and Christmas.

To implement a campaign, first you create a landing page for the Keywords/Ministries you want to promote. Having a landing page that is optimized for each Keyword will increase your Google Quality Score, and boost your ad’s performance. Landing pages also make for a great user experience for your visitors. They will get delivered to content that is related to what they are searching for, instead of just your homepage. Whether someone is searching for ‘Parenting Advice’ or ‘Addiction Support’, they will be delivered to a page that helps answer their questions. You can find out more about landing pages and our Church Landing Page Service here.

Once you have your landing pages in place, you then set a bid for certain Keywords. Bid prices can vary but are all based on a pay-per-click basis. This means you only get charged when someone clicks on your link. The price fluctuates based on the competition; the number of other people bidding on the same Keywords.

Organic Versus Paid: Which is Best

When comparing an organic traffic campaign with a paid campaign, these are the two main factors:


Boosting organic traffic is the more cost-effective option. While you will pay an initial fee to optimize your whole website, ongoing fees are quite minimal, and your traffic will steadily grow.

With paid traffic, you will always be paying for your clicks. If you do not implement an organic campaign side by side, then as soon as you stop paying, traffic will dry up.


Paid traffic definitely achieves quicker results. You can deploy a Campaign and be #1 on Google within hours or days. With an organic campaign, it takes longer and can take months to see significant results. For this reason, time-sensitive or seasonal events should be promoted using a Paid Campaign.

It is hard to say which is best, as they both have their benefits for different goals. Ideally, they should be implemented side by side. This would allow you to start receiving paid traffic immediately, while the organic traffic builds up. You can then reduce your reliance and spend on paid traffic over time.

To Get Started

Missional Marketing is a dedicated Christian communications firm working with Christian Churches and Organizations across the country, and we are also a Top 5% Certified Google Partner. So get in touch today, and we can get started on your Church Marketing Campaign.

Contact Jason Hamrock or Kevin Peck, or use the Contact Us button.

Jason Hamrock – Phone: 480-773-9115 | Email:

Kevin Peck – Phone: 602-481-2991 | Email:

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Comments 2

  1. In your experience, how does a church website measure ROI for delivered ads considering that they are not for profit hence their landing pages do not have a commercial intent.

    1. Post

      Hi Kevine,

      Thanks for getting in touch. We measure ROI for church marketing in a number of ways.

      Firstly, we measure web traffic. From our research over the years with many church clients, we have found that there is a direct correlation between an increase in web traffic and church attendance.

      Secondly, churches want to help those who are in need, so we create landing pages for churches that reach people that are having particular problems such as marital, family or addiction issues. These can all be tracked, and if a church can help a person in need, that is a great ROI.

      Thirdly, many of our clients do indeed have a payment portal where people can donate to the church. While the churches a not for profit, they do have to raise funding to cover operating costs, so an increase in web traffic through SEO and advertising can indeed lead to an increase in revenues for the church.

      If you would like some more information, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

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