"I saved our church A TON of money..."
— Eric Johnson What They Say

Recommendations

Sometimes we’re asked for recommendations for hosting, plugins and WordPress-related services. These are services and products that we use or have good reason to trust. By good reason we mean that they are recommended by people we trust or have a generally good reputation. None of them are required.

Disclosure: We receive commission from referring you to some of these products/services.

Web Hosting

WP Church Host is the best choice for hosting a church website that uses WordPress.

This is a service we are involved with so we can confirm that it is ideal for our themes and plugins. Hassle-free WordPress hosting for churches is the idea. You get managed WordPress hosting at a price of about half what you’d normally pay. Here’s why to use WP Church Host over typical web hosting.

  • It’s tailored to churches. Have church website questions? You’re covered.
  • It’s optimized for WordPress so it’s fast, secure and reliable.
  • You get support for WordPress issues, something typical hosts will not help with.
  • WordPress is preinstalled to make setup easier for you.
  • WP Church Host will move your website for free if you’re already on another host.
  • There is a 14 day free trial and a 30 day money back guarantee.
  • Automatic nightly backups of your church’s entire website. No worries.
  • Automatic WordPress updates to help keep your site secure and stable.
  • There is a 99.9% uptime guarantee and if that doesn’t happen, you get money back.
  • Proactive security monitoring plus free SSL certificates (automatic installation).
  • Performance monitoring and automatic scaling help keep your site running fast.
  • Easy to use control panel so you don’t get bogged down by anything unnecessary.
  • No pricing gimmicks, multi-year contracts or surprise price hikes like with typical hosts.

Tips

  • Choose a host whose support covers WordPress issues. Typical shared hosts usually don’t.
  • Be careful not to get locked into a host that only offers annual payment terms. It’s a good idea to pay monthly to see if the service is worthwhile before committing to an annual term (usually discounted).
  • Find out what the cost is to renew for additional years. Many hosts offer a discounted rate for the first year. Know what the regular price is so you can be prepared for a possible increase on renewal.
  • Be aware that hosting “review” sites in general are commission-driven and usually favor hosts who will pay them more. Read our Church Web Hosting Rated and Ranked article.
  • If you’re looking for hosting, you may also be about to pick a domain name. Read How to Pick a Domain Name for Your Church Website for our tips.

Plugins

You can search thousands of WordPress plugins in the WordPress.org Plugin Directory. Commercial plugins are not found in the directory. For those, try Pro Plugin Directory or give Google a search. Here are some plugins that we use on a regular basis.

Also see our Add-ons for the Church Theme Content plugin. We have several free plugins in the WordPress Plugin Directory as well.

Backup Solutions

We very much recommend having a backup solution in place.

If you’re hosted with WP Church Host, your website is backed up automatically every night. If you want to switch to WP Church Host, they will move your website for you for free.

  • BackUpWordPress – A free backup plugin with a good ratings.
  • UpdraftPlus – Another highly rated free plugin with optional paid addons.
  • VaultPress – a paid service provided by one of the WordPress founders’ company.
  • BackupBuddy – a popular paid backup plugin

You can do manual backups of WordPress as well. Read WordPress Backups on the WordPress Codex. Many web hosts provide general website backups as part of their service. See Best Backup WordPress Plugins According to 21 Pros for other options.

Stock Photos

Here are places you can obtain photos for your church website.

Our theme demos use stock photography to show how a real site might look. These photos are not included with the theme. If you see a photo used in a demo that you want to use, you can find its source in Specific Themes.

Stock Videos

Some of our themes feature video backgrounds. It can be economical to buy a stock video shot and edited by a professional instead of using a video of your own.

  • Lightstock has church-centric stock video footage
  • VideoHive has a wide selection of lower priced videos
  • Dissolve has moderately prices videos of high quality
  • iStock has higher quality videos at a higher price
  • Shutterstock is another source worth considering

Important: Videos should not be used on the web without first converting and compressing them. Read our Video Backgrounds guide for how to prepare your video.

Online Giving

Read our How can we handle giving? article for several options for online giving.

Code Customizations

We recommend Codeable for professional code customizations. They have WordPress developers on hand. Be sure to ask them to use a child theme.