How to keep church visitors coming back after Christmas

WelcomeMatMost churches experience an influx of church visitors at Christmas time.

  • Some are out of town guests.
  • Other church visitors seek out the Christmas traditions of their youth.
  • Others are awakening to their spiritual thirst.

Churches have special activities that are geared at increasing the number of personal invitations that members give.

While your attendance may swell at Christmas time, the critical question is

  • How can you get your church visitors to come back after visiting your church this Christmas season?

Here are four factors to keep in mind.

1. A excellent and meaningful Christmas worship experience.

Make sure all your Christmas season events and worship services are done with excellence and quality.

Don’t let sloppiness or a lacksidasical attitude hinder your visitors experience of the Christmas season.

Think about your worship experiences and ask “Is this helping our visitors and members experience God and hear God’s truth?”

If a visitor doesn’t have a sense of encountering God during their visit, it’s highly unlikely they will return.  Instead, they’ll simply wonder “What’s the point of that?”

2.  Well done hospitality that reflects Christmas cheer.

Remove the unnecessary barriers to a return visit.

  • Make sure your greeters are smiling at Christmas.   Read 10 Tips for Greeters.
  • Make sure your facility is cleaned up and well decorated.
  • Make sure your processes of getting from parking lot to pew are frictionless.
  • Make sure your bulletins are easy to follow.

And most of all, make sure your members people say hello to the visitors.

There is lots of other information on this website about church hospitality in this tutorial.

Create the best experience possible at Christmas.

You can’t make a long term influence for Christ on a church visitor if they don’t come back to your church.

3.  Use the Advent time build momentum for your January sermon series.

The four weeks of advent is also a great time to start promoting your post Christmas sermon series.

Pick a topic that is relevant to life.

Do a six week  sermon series connected with the launch of new small groups.

These are great avenues to invite people back to church after the Christmas season is over.

Small groups allow for relationships to form, which increases the possibility your visitor will become a regular attender.

Consider this webinar on Church Visitor Assimilation.

4.  Get visitor contact information.

There are many ways to get contact information.

I recommend the use of contact cards.   (Read and listen: How to Get Church Visitor Contact Information).  In our congregation, we are small enough to recognize first time church visitors. We hand them first time visitor cards.

Drop a note or Christmas card in the mail.

Invite them to other Christmas specials.  Remind your visitors they can bring a friend.

Also, use the card to remind your church visitors of the upcoming January series.

Even drop a little gift in the mail like a $5 gift card or gas card.

Some churches still make a personal visit within 24-48 hours.

Find ways to show honor to your visitor and invite them to return for January’s sermon series.

You can’t follow up if you don’t get any contact information.

Let me ask you this?

What specifically are you doing to be intentional about inviting your church visitors to return after Christmas?

Please share in the comments below.

This might help.

Consider this webinar on Church Visitor Assimilation to give you further ideas on how to help your visitor become a regular attender.

Image credit: wiml / 123RF Stock Photo

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Comments

  1. says

    Imagine with me what impact a church might have if only 8-10 first time Christmas time visitors got connected to your local church.

    Imagine thousands of churches across the country. . .

    Imagine the baptisms that might occur as new believers come to faith over the next few months as a result of a faith journey that was influenced by Christmas services at church. . .

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