When searching for a website company and CMS provider for your church, often you are a looking for more than just the tools they offer. More often than not, churches are looking for a provider that will that cater to the specific needs of their church. One of those needs is often support for nontechnical users. What we’ve done with the list below is organized CMS providers that offer church websites, great service, and have demonstrated an understanding of the needs of the church.
Here is a list, in order, of companies considered to provide the best church websites.
The number one solution, head and shoulders above the rest, is Ministry Designs. Ministry Designs not only has the most intuitive and comprehensive church website builder (CMS) but they also have all of the features you need to make sure that your website stays up to date. One of the amazing things that they do, that is really outside of the norm for this industry, is roll out monthly updates. They do this to ensure that you’ll never have to buy another website. Additionally, when working with the folks at Ministry Designs, they assign you a customer success representative who will share their screen with you and teach you how to use their tools. When shopping for your new website for your church, you would be making a mistake not considering Ministry Designs first.
Share Faith is a great competitor in the space with a good solution. They are number 2 on our list for website building solutions for your church. Share Faith does have a unique set of tools that seems to be very helpful for churches, but—and this is a big but—they’ve built their tools to be an overlay of Wordpress. And for the church that normally has nontechnical users, this can present a slew of problems.
We have to take a break from our list to provide a little bit of additional information that we believe is helpful in the decision making process. Currently, in the church technology space, the market of individual standing companies is being consolidated. We have included a couple of companies that have been purchased by the larger company in this list because some of the companies still provide their own CMS which could still be a viable option for your church. However, some market research has shown that because of quick acquisitions and employee consolidation, the technical support of the following companies has suffered a bit.
Clover at one point was the leader in the church-specific CMS industry, but unfortunately that day has come and gone. Clover lacks the flexibility needed to really personalize and customize your website. That, in addition to them selling out, is the reason they’ve landed number 3 on our list.
Ekklesia360 has made a name for themselves among larger churches because of the company’s willingness to make changes to the their CMS and customize their features. The problem is, that puts them out of reach for most churches because it is so expensive to do anything. Also, the website editor is sadly out of date, a bit clunky and hard to work with.
If you're wondering what Thrive CMS is, you're not alone. Thrive is the website editor solution that the consolidation company created and has pushed most of its brands to use. Bridge Element, Site Organic, and Ezekiel are now all selling the Thrive CMS solution. The question becomes, why is it priced differently across those brands? From what we could tell, the solution is limited and a bit hard to work with, but it was obviously better than what these established brands had before.
Although this list isn’t comprehensive we felt like the options listed above were the best in the market that targets churches. We would recommend demoing any of these CMS solutions to see what is the best option for your church and its needs.