Increase your visibility online this Christmas
All Church of England churches are now on Google Maps thanks to achurchnearyou.com. Now is the time to update your parish’s information and ensure your Christmas services are on their Christmas site, achristmasnearyou.com.
In today’s world, a church’s visibility to the community has as much to do with its rating on Google as the height of its spire.
achurchnearyou.com (ACNY) is THE national website which people use to find churches. As it’s so large it produces top search results on Google, meaning whatever the strength of your church website, if your information on ACNY is up to date, then your parish will be well represented online.
This year, the Church of England has managed to ensure that every church is on Google Maps. At the same time, ACNY has taken on the initiative achristmasnearyou.org, pioneered last year by the Diocese of Bristol and the Diocese of Exeter, enabling parishes to input their Advent and Christmas services.
So now is the time to check and update your ACNY and Google Maps entry and add your Christmas services.
Here’s what you should do.
1. If you (or someone responsible in your parish) isn’t already in charge of your data on ACNY, select your church from the list here and use the “update this church” link on the upper-right of the page to register. Once registered you can control your church’s information.
2. Please update your church’s standing information as a matter of priority – including any contacts or website addresses, and verify that any quoted addresses/phone numbers are up to date – this information is NOT maintained at a diocesan or national level, and so must be checked regularly. If the positioning of the church is incorrect on the site, please alert Phil Hind webmaster for ACNY first (phil.hind a_t oxford d_o_t anglican d_o_t org).
3. By using the “add event” button, you can input recurring events, or one-off special events such as your Christmas services! Any Christmas services will be nationally advertised via a co-ordinated central campaign, so it’s vital that you add your Advent services there
4. If the positioning is correct on ACNY but missing or incorrect on Google maps, parishes should add themselves on www.google.co.uk/places or takeover their entry. If there is a mistake on their entry then there is a link at the bottom of the page that says report a problem.