Barna: Church Internet Use Continues to Lag

According to a new study published today by The Barna Group, churches continue to lag behind in their use of Internet technology.

Only 56% of churches use “email blasts” or eNewsletters to communicate with people in their congregations.  That percentage is unchanged from a similar survey conducted in 2005.  Less than 2/3 of churches (62%) have a website.  That is up from 57% in 2005.

Among other Internet technology being used – 1/4 of churches have a presence on a social networking site like MySpace, 1/6 podcast, and 1/8 blog.

I can understand why churches – particularly smaller churches – wouldn’t be doing social networking, podcasting, or blogging.  Those are more time-intensive and technical tasks and are not as widely used.  But I’m surprised that such a large percentage of churches are still don’t have a website and don’t have an eNewsletter.

At this point, websites and eNewsletters are beyond the late majority on the innovation adoption curve.  In other words, the vast majority of people use websites and subscribe to eNewsletters and would utilize their church’s website and eNewsletter if it had them.  Additionally, a website and eNewsletter continue to be among the most time-effective and cost-effective ways to communicate.

Read more about the study on The Barna Group website.

About the author

Paul Steinbrueck

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