The Rhode Island Conference has launched a new website that is designed to be both easy for users to navigate and easy for Conference staff to keep up-to-date with fresh content.
"The new website was built in the same system as the current Massachusetts Conference website, and a new Connecticut Conference website is being developed there as well," said Tiffany Vail, Associate Conference Minister for Communications for all three Conferences. "This makes it easy for content to be shared among the three Conference sites."
For example, she said, when one Conference is hosting an event, like Super Saturday, that is of interest to people in the other Conferences, it requires just a couple of clicks to post that event on all of the calendars. Resources, news stories and blog posts can also easily be shared.
"This shows how our Conferences can collaborate to broaden what's available to people in our churches while simultaneously relieving us from the need to duplicate one another's work," Vail said.
The new website features more current content on the front page, including blog posts from Conference Minister Barbara Libby, meaning visitors are more likely to find something new each time they visit. The website is also designed to be "responsive," meaning it will work as well on a phone or tablet as it does on a computer screen.
Local churches are invited to share their content on the site. Events can be submitted by clicking the submission button on the Events Calendar
, and Classified Ads
can be submitted by churches looking to hire staff, or to sell or give away items that may be of interest to other churches.
The new website will also offer some cost savings for the Conference.
The new system, created by Brick River Technologies
, has a lot of capabilities beyond the website itself. Event registration can now be done within the same system, saving on the cost of using an outside program. The system also includes database and bulk email capabilities. Plans are in the works to consolidate the various Conference databases into Brick River, and to use that to send out emails. This will save on the costs now associated with both an outside email program and a database program.
In the coming weeks, changes will be made to the Conference's weekly e-newsletter, to make it more user-friendly and more readable on mobile devices. The newsletter will be shortened in length by using it to link to content that is available on the website, where it is more easily shareable.
Anyone with feedback about the site is encouraged to comment below or contact Tiffany Vail
Click here to learn more about the ongoing collaboration between the three southern New England Conferences.
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