Archive for category Statisics
The Pew Internet and American Life Project just released results of a new survey regarding the use of tech devices. While some of this may not be that surprising, it is interesting to see how we love gadgets as a culture.
- 85% of American adults own a cellphone
- Desktop computers are most popular with the 35-65 age group
- 70% of Millennials own a laptop, 54% own a desktop machine
- Almost half of all adults own an iPod or other MP3 player
- 74% of those 18-34 own an iPod or other MP3 player with only 56% of those 35-46 owning one
- 63% of those 18-46 own a game console
- 5% of all adults own an e-reader
- 4% own an iPad or other tablet
Interestingly, 9% of adults polled do not own ANY of the devices listed, but that number jumped to 43% of adults age 75 and older.
Clearly, we are (especially in the younger age groups) a culture that loves our gadgets. I hope that we as Christians, will continue to strive to learn to use these devices to spread the saving message of the cross and strengthen the church throughout this land.
Let’s talk about traffic. No I don’t mean how long it took you to get to work today or that logjam of cars on the Interstate trying to get across town. I am talking about who is coming to your website or blog. Traffic is obviously important in this sense of the word. If no one is coming to your website or reading the posts that you labored over and posted to your blog, then why do it? If, on the other hand, you have people visiting your site from Korea or Ukraine or India, and you are in Denver, Colorado are what time your services are held and cool Mapquest directions to your building really all that important? We need to understand that the web is an international tool. That visitor from Korea, quite honestly, couldn’t care less about what time services start. You need to provide him (or her) with more. Teach him some biblical truth that he didn’t know before. Share something that will plant a seed in his life that may bear fruit for the Lord.
So who is coming to your site and where do they come from? I am often asked if there is a way to tell when people visit your website or blog. The answer is a resounding YES with the help our our friends at Google. Google Analytics is a free statistics package that you can easily add to your website or blog. Once installed on the pages or your website or blog you can get detailed stats about the number of people visiting your site and even where they come from. The amount of detail that can be gained from this tool is really impressive. You can learn the number of new visitors vs. returning visitors and dozens of other stats to help you understand who is looking at your site. One of the more interesting reports shows you a map of the world and when you hover you mouse over a color coded country (the color coding indicates traffic volume) you can see how many visitors have come to your site from that country. A simple click on the country shows a close up map of that country with dots from the various cities containing visitors. As an example, I know that within the last 30 days our school website (www.bvbid.org) has received:
– 2090 visits
– 55.89% of those visitors are first-time visitors to our site
– 50 countries had visitors
– within the U.S. we had visits from 49 states – North Dakota was a no show
Certainly this information can be very useful to a ministry website or blog. Knowing that a vast majority of your traffic come from a particular region or area of the globe may help you realize that you have an opportunity to reach out to people in places and lands you never dreamed were possible.
A recent Pew Internet Life survey reports that the number of people who have downloaded podcasts for later listening has risen to 12%. That figure is up from 7% earlier this year. While the report also shows that only 1% download podcasts on a daily basis that shouldn’t come as a huge surprise. Many podcasts don’t even produce episodes daily. While 12% may not seem like much, with 600 million current U.S. Internet users, that amounts to approximately 72 million users. That is certainly nothing to sneeze at!
The report also states that the number of podcasts available to Internet users has exploded in the last two years. In 2004, Podcast Alley, a popular podcast directory website listed fewer than 1000 podcasts available for download. That same directory now lists over 26,000 different podcasts, representing over 1 million episodes in November of 2006.
Churches need to consider how they can use this tool to tap into a wider audience for delivering audio files online. The Bear Valley Bible Institute of Denver currently podcasts chapel sermons and presentations through the BVBID Chapelcast. You can subscribe free to this podcast through Apple’s iTunes (also free) or get more information from the Institute’s website. The Bear Valley church of Christ Sermoncast is just beginning to podcasts their sermons and some Bible classes and the Parker church of Christ in Parker, CO. has a good selection of episodes available as well. You can find others through the iTunes Store within the iTunes software. Remember that subscribing to these podcasts is absolutely FREE!
I found some interesting statistics recently in an article by Walt Wilson in Christian Computer Magazine. The article is entitled, “Web 2.0 – The Second Generation Revolution is Underway” and talks mostly about the new revival of web start-ups and technologies. The interesting part to me, is the stats at the end of the article. The stats were acquired from Facts and Faith Newsletter.
- 27% of ALL U.S. churches make no use of the Internet
- 12% of Protestant pastors never use the Internet
- 94% of church websites are inwardly focused
- Only 46% of churches provide staff e-mail
- Only 23% of churches make use of e-mail prayer chains
- Only 18% have an e-mail newsletter
- Only 2% of U.S. churches offer a way to donate online
- 0% report using social networking software
While some of these numbers shouldn’t completely surprise anyone – they should open our eyes to the opportunity to make use of these tools. We need to understand the generation that is coming behind us and reach out with the technology available.
I thought the most interesting stat was that “94% of church websites are inward focused” – that needs to change. The church is about reaching out – we need to be thinking about getting the gospel to others as must as posting a notice on when the next potluck is.