As a church plans a website, that church needs to decide who is going to be responsible for the website. There needs to be someone in charge, someone ultimately responsible for keeping the site running and keeping it updated.
There are several routes to go on this. One is to use volunteers. Rarely is this a good idea. Volunteers have good intentions, but when push comes to shove, their other commitments will take priority. There are exceptions to this, but they are few.
Another solution is to use an outside party. Hire a web designer who will be willing to perform updates. Depending on who you choose, this can be expensive. I’ve seen this work well; I’ve seen this work poorly. One possibility, of course, is to pay someone in the congregation. This has its risks as well. Many times the person feels compelled to charge the church very little, then views the work as a favor and not a service. I think the church should say, “We’ll pay your going rate. If you then want to donate some of that back, it’s your business. But we will pay what’s fair.”
What usually works best is to have a site with a content management system which the staff can handle. Have someone on staff responsible for keeping the site up and running. If they don’t have the know how to troubleshoot problems, make sure they have quick access to phone numbers of those that do. A well-designed site shouldn’t need much maintenance, merely content updates.
Given my choice, I’d have a professional design the site (I’d have it done on WordPress, though there are other options), then have someone already on staff maintain the site.
Do you have other suggestions as to how a church can keep things running smoothly?