Friday, March 9, 2018

Weekly Church Sign: Don’t visit us, visit our website

Ritson Road Alliance Church sign in Oshawa

½ star out of 5 stars

Ritson Road is a very busy street in Oshawa. Thousands of cars are driving past this sign for Ritson Road Alliance Church everyday. Why not grab people’s attention with your sign, invite them to come to your church, or at least give them a smile? This sign is an epic fail. It probably got more second looks while my dog was sitting there than it had up to that point. Yes, it’s a clever website address with that .church domain, but let’s be serious most people driving by could find your church website if they wanted to. The sign is an opportunity to give them a reason to look you up online. And this website address fails to give them that reason.

At a minimum the church could’ve use the second line on their sign to say “Join us Sunday 10:30 am.” Instead they put that message, “Join us Sunday 10:30 am,” on the other side of the sign. That is a serious sign sin. You can’t put half the message on one side and the other half-message on the other side. Do they think commuters will put together the two halves by the end of the day? They could easily have put the full message on both sides of the sign. It still wouldn’t be very good, but it would’ve been better than splitting it up.

I’ll give them a ½ star for effort. Their church website http://www.ritsonalliance.church/ is actually pretty good. It’s friendly, welcoming and interesting. But I’m not evaluating websites in the Weekly Church Sign Review, I’m looking at signs. And the sign at Ritson Road Alliance Church is pathetic. Don’t advertise website addresses. Don’t do that! Instead give people a reason to google your church! They did have Sunday info on the other side of the sign, but there’s no humor here or any attempt to grab people’s attention. The sign doesn’t even light up at night! I was very tempted to downgrade to 0 out of 5 stars when I discovered the sign doesn’t light up at night. It’s very dark around this church at night, kind of spooky and not welcoming.

As I said last week, all too often churches fail to use their signs to try to draw people in. Admittedly, Ritson Road Alliance Church, you do not have much space on this sign. You might be able to purchase a set of slightly smaller letters that would allow you to put a little more info on the second line. That might help a bit. Even better would be to get a sign maker in to refresh and reconfigure the whole sign. Using your current letter set, I think this would fit (on both sides of the sign):

YOU’RE INVITED TO JOIN US
SUNDAY 10:30 AM

You could promote an upcoming event at your church. Why not put up a quotation from Jesus? I suspect you’ll find this to be too edgy, but here’s another suggestion that would fit:

LESS BUSY THAN WAL-MART
JOIN US SUNDAY 10:30 AM

If you can catch people’s attention and make them think about something, they just might think about your church the next time they think about going to church. And, yes, they might even google “Ritson Road Alliance Church” and find your website.

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