In case you haven’t noticed, mobile devices are everywhere. Phones and tablets are part of our everyday lives. They’re how we connect, find information, watch, listen and read. Our smartphones are in our pockets at all times—even in church.
Since mobile devices have become an essential part of our everyday lives, why not work to make them a tool for good? Why not invest in making mobile an extension of the church for your congregation members? It’s another way you can minister to people’s daily lives and advance their discipleship.
The Changing Face of Church Mobile Applications
In the past, having a mobile app for your church basically meant just having a mobile version of your website. It was a passive way for churches to deliver information to community members. That has changed significantly.
Today’s church mobile apps give staff and congregation members access to a wide array of actions and features—and benefit churches greatly when it comes to the collection and upkeep of data. Being present in the mobile space in a way that is different than how churches have done things traditionally is incredibly important.
3 Key Advantages of an Effective Church Mobile App
Here are a trio of ways a quality mobile app can benefit your church:
Share information about upcoming events, let people know a new sermon has posted, ask for feedback or members to complete a survey, or give members a place to send a message to a pastor. It’s another way for you to speak to members and members to speak to you—even when they’re not at church.
Give members a quick and easy way to respond to the spirit moving them in real time. Rather than waiting in line at a table to register for an event you mention at a service, they can do it immediately on the app. Rather than going home and getting on the computer to listen to a sermon, they can do it from anywhere on the app.
One of the great things about a strong church mobile app is that it puts giving at people’s fingertips. Even if an individual forgot to bring an envelope or cash to a service on Sunday, they can still make a contribution right then and there. Or they can sign up for monthly or recurring giving on the spot.
Examples of actions church members can take using a mobile app:
Register for events
Manage their giving
Manage volunteer commitments
Update communication preferences
Listen to sermons
Take a survey
Sign up for a community group
Log a prayer request
Read a morning/evening devotional
How A Mobile App Can Improve Your Data Hygiene
Beyond the benefits listed above, having a quality mobile app can also benefit your church when it comes to data. This is generally true in two ways:
It can help you collect more data – You can connect your app to your database so that anyone who registers for the app is automatically added to the database. You can also use your app as a place to share surveys with members to gain additional feedback (data), and learn more about app users based on how they use the app (actions they take).
It can help you keep your data updated – Your app enables members to update critical information that may change like their address or phone number. When they do, that information will also be updated in your database. Keeping data on your members up to date is key to having a useful database.
The more your mobile app becomes integrated into your church, and the more staff and congregation members use it, the more valuable it becomes as a data tool.