When building and maintaining a website for your law firm, it goes without saying that there are many factors to consider..
How should your firm craft the website? To what consumer base should the site cater most? What should your landing page look like? How many web pages and how much anchor text should your site include? When should your website launch, if it hasn’t already? And what about the design: Simple or lavish?
Before long, it’s easy to get so caught up in site mapping, font styles, and blog headers that you lose sight of the principle objectives of your law firm’s website. While every law firm will have personalized objectives of their own to some extent, generally speaking we know that all law firm websites will share the same fundamental key objectives. Trust us – we know websites!
What the Numbers Tell Us
How can we be so certain that law firm websites share the same key objectives, you ask? To answer that question, let’s look at the numbers:
- According to one survey, 30 percent of respondents believe that websites’ primary goal is to provide information.
- About 68 percent of users say that shared values and prerogatives help increase their trust in a business’s brand.
- It’s estimated that only about 22 percent of all businesses are content with their client conversion rate.
- Business websites that engage with their site visitors and publish 16 or more blog posts each month lead to nearly five times more leads than compared to websites that add four posts or less per month.
- Understanding how website visitors are interacting with your site is one of the most important factors for determining what you need to change most about your site to increase conversions.
So, what do all of these various statistics have in common? We believe that they touch broadly on each of the main factors that all law firms should bear in mind when crafting their websites.
What Objectives Should Your Law Firm’s Website Accomplish?
1. Conveying Information
The first thing that any website – and particularly those that offer legal services – should prioritize is the adequate conveyance of information. Think about it: Why would anyone visit, much less stay engaged with, a website that is worthless in terms of information? There’s simply no benefit to hosting a website that doesn’t immediately and completely convey information in a user-friendly manner to its audience. It’s not effective for your law firm, nor is it helpful for potential clients.
Sure, you may be thinking, “but we do have valuable information on our website.” If that’s the case, then great! But, consider this: About 23 percent of small businesses don’t update their websites more than once per year. Sixty-eight percent of small businesses don’t feature an email address on their websites’ home pages. For those businesses and firms that don’t update their sites often, nor give visitors enough information to access their services, that’s a lot of overhead work being put into websites that are effectively useless in terms of increasing conversion rates.
Beyond just including information on your law firm’s website that actually helps clients, remember that your firm’s website should try to do the following:
Your Website Should Share Your Practice Areas
This seems like a no-brainer for a law firm website, but it isn’t necessarily intuitive for all firms. When you share your practice areas, be sure to include information about those areas, relevant local or state laws that often affect such cases, and even perhaps some frequently asked questions.
Your Website Should Show Professionalism
Because your firm’s potential clients are seeking out legal services, a high degree of professionalism is to be expected. Informal pictures or graphics, spelling or grammatical errors in content, complicated website design, or incorrect or severely outdated information can easily work against every credible, professional impression you’ve already given the audience upon first visiting your site.
Your Website Should Give Visitors a Sense of Security and Trust
After visiting your law firm’s website, potential clients should get the impression that you and your firm are credible, trustworthy, and capable to take on their cases. There should be a sense of security that would-be clients experience from you – and yes, all this is possible to feel when simply visiting a website.
2. A Clear Firm Branding
Being in the business of marketing, we can’t overstate enough just how important tailoring your law firm’s branding can be. The cold, hard fact is that, without giving your audience a strong understanding of your firm’s market presence and uniqueness, there’s really nothing stopping a potential client from choosing another firm for their case. By featuring your attorneys’ biographies, your target client base, your case results, and your city pages, you’re able to effectively carve out an online presence for your firm that will help you garner the attention of your niche market.
Without clear, effective, specific branding, your law firm can easily fall in line with all the other firms in your area and, in essence, go unnoticed. Not to mention, Google rankings won’t climb as high when such branding components are missing from your website.
3. Increasing Leads and Conversions
The days of creating leads and conversions exclusively through brick-and-mortar methods are likely gone forever – in fact, one marketer even says, “Look, in 2018, you need a website.” All that’s to say, research tells us that online platforms are simply much more effective at boosting leads and conversion rates for business and law firms these days. And, after all, isn’t turning would-be clients into actual clients the aim of any good marketing strategy?
Here’s the bottom line: When a website is well-designed, when it conveys the firm’s information and branding, and when it is easily navigable, clients are able to receive services before ever setting foot in the firm’s office.
By improving your website’s search engine optimization (SEO) techniques through analytically sound methods, you’re able to appear in more search results and maximize your online reach. By including calls to actions and internal site links in your web pages and blog posts, you can increase the likelihood of click conversion among potential clients after they’ve read about your attorneys, your practice areas, and your case results. And, by pairing your website with a sophisticated social media presence, you can do both at the same time.
4. Getting and Keeping Your Clients’ Attention
Beyond simply conveying useful information to potential clients concerning why they should choose your law firm over all others, your law firm’s website should keep current clients engaged and informed. By featuring web pages or blog posts that focus on trending developments in legislation that affect your practice areas and clientele, your website can host relevant content for an ever-changing field while also increasing your firm’s credibility and professional profile.
You can also use your firm’s website as a platform for announcing major announcements in your firm and your community, which helps reinforce your branding among online audiences. In effect, you can keep former and current clients updated. This makes them feel as if they’re remaining part of your focus and attention. You can also take advantage of having fresh content and localized web focus – two things that Google notably loves when ranking sites.
5. Informing Your Law Firm’s Current and Future Marketing Strategies
Alright, this objective may not be as client-centric as the others, but it can’t always be about the client, right? When you practice effective website authorship by meeting these other objectives, your internal marketing strategy will start to thank you. Why? Because, just as your clients benefit from an excellent website, so does your law firm.
Measurable data is much more easily tracked via your website. With this, you can see which web pages are most visited, when blog topics strike a chord with your readers (and when they don’t), and how well your overall website does from day-to-day, week-to-week, and month-to-month. You can use video marketing and social media outreach to compliment your law firm website, then in turn analyze the results of both to determine how well one encourages your audience to visit the other. You can more easily track clicks on your web pages, conversions through your Contact Us page, and more.
And, here’s the best part: You’re already hosting a website anyway! So the analytic benefits that your firm gets to experience (if you take advantage of them – which you absolutely should!) are just an added bonus.
Of course, this information is really only useful if it’s put to good use. Make sure that, when analyzing your website’s data, you’re taking a careful look at the numbers. Let them inform current and future marketing strategies. When something is or isn’t working, the numbers don’t lie.
How Can We Help Your Law Firm’s Website?
Now that you have a snapshot of what main objectives your law firm’s website should be accomplishing, how does Black Fin fit in?
We have been helping law firms craft, design, market, update, maintain, optimize, and analyze their websites for several years. We know who we’re working with; more importantly, we know who your law firm is working with and what your clientele expects to see and feel when searching for legal services. We are always up-to-date on the latest trends and developments in SEO, online conversions, brand marketing, content creation, and more. Black Fin can help your firm find its digital voice by reaching your consumer base. We never approach two firm websites in the exact same way, just as we know you wouldn’t approach two clients’ cases the exact same way.
Contact us today and tell us more about your firm’s practice areas, target audience, and website expectations. Our team is ready and willing to dive into the analytics so that you can brand a website that exceeds these five objectives and more. Reach out to us online or by phone at 1-888-829-1479.