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A First Impressions Survey of Newcomers to Church

I've been doing a lot of reading on the subject of welcoming recently - as regular readers of Communicate Jesus would know! (Don't forget about the welcoming roundtable in Sydney next month!)  One book that I've found particularly helpful is Fusion: Turning first-time guests into fully engaged members of your church

by Nelson Searcy. There's a lot of great advice in this book that I've been thinking through how to apply.  One of the suggested applications is a survey of newcomers, sent out in the days after their first visit. Searcy suggests the following questions:

  • What did you notice first?
  • What did you like best?
  • What was your overall impression?
  • How can we pray with you?
  • Name
  • Email Address

I also noticed The Village Church running a similar survey on their website.  I decided to launch this at Church by the Bridge - below is a snapshot, and you can view online here. We received our first entry last week!  

 There are numerous benefits to this survey. Here's five:

  1. Show people that you care about the experience that they have.
  3. See how church is perceived through the eyes of someone who is new.
  5. Learn what your church is doing well - how the church and welcome teams can be encouraged.
  7. Discover what obstacles exist to new people feeling welcomed.
  9. Understand (over time) whether your church is welcoming or not (don't just rely on gut feel!).