More than two-thirds of the world’s population has a mobile device, with most people now using a smartphone, the number of unique mobile users around the world is also growing at the rate of 4 percent year-on-year. Since technology has the power to bring people together, it comes as no surprise that churches are going digital. This helps them keep in touch with their church members at ease. With the increasing use of technology, church needs to identify the right tool that will help manage their church activities. This needs to happen with the help of technology and not let technology manage the church. This can be solved by asking simple questions that will make you get an awesome church app. Bottom line - choose a church app that makes communication and keeping in touch easy.
If you are thinking of building a church app, it takes a lot of time, money and tech planning to meet the needs of your church’s culture. It also involves dedicated resources to manage and maintain your church app. Before you decide to get an app for your church, answer these 8 questions.
Why do I need an app for my church?
To each person, the answer may be different. Some church admins want a church app to send messages to their members and get instant responses. Since everyone is digitally savvy these days, reaching church goers where they are mostly seen - ONLINE, makes communication fast and super effective. Some may way an app to keep in touch with the growing ‘younger’ generation of members in the church. While some may be frustrated with chat platforms that takes away a lot of their valuable time in unnecessary chats and forwards. Answering this first will help in defining the need of the church.
What are the features I need to have in a church app?
What are the key things you want to achieve by getting a church app? Is the primary goal engagement? Or you are keep to have complete control in communication? Once you know that, you can match it with the features you need to have in a church app. Some of the features include sharing sermon audios and videos, integrating events to get RSVP, receiving pledge, prayer requests, sending push notification, having a calendar to track activities and more.
Will chat platforms like WhatsApp suffice for my church instead of an app?
If you are already using a chat platform like WhatsApp to keep in touch with your church members, the question to answer are,
- Engage with my members effectively
- Delete, edit or unsend messages
- Get event RSVP’s
- Share it beyond chat - Like in social media platforms
- Customise the app to suit my church brand image
- Chat with structure and not lose much of my productivity time
If you are using a chat platform or thinking of using one instead of a church app, these questions will help you decide better.
What is the cost involved in developing a stand alone church app?
Approximate cost of building a simple app can range from $8,000 to $40,000, depending upon how simple or complex the requirement is. When outsourced to a company or a freelancer to develop an app, the charges would range between $40 to $150 per hour, depending on the skill level of the developer and the complexity of the app. If you decide to develop the app inhouse, although the cost is not measured, it would take considerable amount of time to develop it.
After all of that, the app has to be maintained, upgraded, bugs fixed regularly and more. It does not end with developing a stand alone app. Therefore getting a church app on ONNE is a better choice.
Will I be able to get my members to download the church app If I develop one?
Developing an app is one, but getting church members to download and ensuring that they don't delete the app is another challenge church admins must consider before getting a church app. With so many apps being launched on daily basis, people delete apps that are not frequently used on their phone. Unless the app is engaging on a daily or weekly basis, the chances of it being deleted the moment phone slows down or your member runs out of space is high.
What is the time involved in getting a church app?
Whether you decide to develop the app in house or give it to a development company, the minimum time in getting your app will be 4 to 8 months. However, if you get your church app from ONNE, your app will be ready with all these awesome church app features in less than 3 minutes. You don't need any coding skills either. ONNE provides ready to use apps for Churches.
Who will manage this app for me? Will it be easy to use?
Once you develop an app, it has to be managed and maintained to stay relevant. This includes adding content to your app, sharing pictures, posts, sermons and more. The best church app will make it easy for you to upload these information as easy as it is to share a picture on a chat platform like whatsapp. Therefore, look for the complexity of us of the app before investing in one.
Do I need technical knowledge to get an app?
When you outsource an app to a development company, it is imperative to manage the development process closely. This way you know that you are getting the app you need for your church. With a lack of technical knowledge, many a times, these companies do not take clients easily and you light end up with an app which either does not meet the requirement fully, or has cost you more than the initial quote. If you are not technically savvy, best would be to get a ready to use church app.
Do you have anymore questions? Feel free to ask and we will answer it for you.