Just How Important is a Website Anyway? The Role and Function of Your Homepage. 7 Great Features to Include on Your Website’s Homepage
Your firm’s website is one of the most important marketing tools that you should be focusing on as we make our way through 2019. Even so, amazingly, some small businesses still don’t believe that having a website can make or break future business with potential clients, as it’s estimated that only 64 percent of small businesses had websites as of 2018. And, even less are investing in content marketing and search engine optimization (SEO) services.
If your firm has a website, you’re already ahead of thousands of businesses that still haven’t gone digital. But, digital marketing success doesn’t just stop at having a website. Exactly what you put on your website is just as important as having one in the first place. So, we’re here to talk about where it all begins: The Homepage.
What exactly does your firm’s website’s homepage need to include?
Of course, to maximize click conversions, best marketing practices tell us to include easy methods for clients to contact you, visuals that engage and encourage clients to continue clicking on your site, clear information and mission statements, client testimonials, and more. Furthermore, because your homepage serves as a landing page for the majority of site traffic driven to your page by search result sites (think Google or Yahoo), it’s important that your homepage is clean, professional, accurate, functional, and engaging.
Just How Important is a Website Anyway?
Many law firms already know the importance of a website, but some may still be a bit resistant. We understand that today’s digital world has meant a lot of changes to the traditional marketing practices to which many firms are accustomed. Have a look at the following important facts:
- Businesses without a website are estimated to lose more and more business each year.
- Website investment is only growing; by last year alone, nearly 58 percent of businesses without a website had plans to build one that same year.
- Of the most-invested-in marketing methods of 2018, the top three were email marketing, websites, and social media.
The Role and Function of Your Homepage
A homepage is responsible for creating the viewer’s first impression of your firm. And, whether or not your website’s homepage is doing this well or not, the reality is that your homepage serves as the first glimpse of your firm that your website gives to the world. This is why it’s critical to recognize the significance of your homepage, and how the design and content choices you make can seriously impact the impression which potential clients glean upon first clicking on your site.
From a functionality standpoint, homepages should be thought of as a platform – a springboard of sorts – that guides the client around your site. From a design perspective, it’s important that your site have a clear navigational structure that allows viewers to quickly, easily, and accurately find what they’re looking for. If the structure is obscure or unhelpful, not only will your website’s SEO be hampered, but you also won’t be making your website as effective as it could be.
7 Great Features to Include on Your Website’s Homepage
While most businesses find that they can include a lot on their website’s homepage and still retain their audience, the best way to take full advantage of your homepage is by featuring the most helpful information to give your viewers a complete picture of both your site and your law firm itself. Here are seven of our top recommendations:
1. Include a Picture or Video of Your Firm
Why save visual media just for your About Us page? Why not also feature a profile shot of your firm, your attorneys and staff, or another photo that relevantly captures your firm in action? Or, perhaps even better: Consider featuring a video introduction to your firm on the front and center of your site’s homepage.
Much research suggests that video media can do wonders when it comes to boosting clicks, retaining viewer interest, conveying information more easily, and even increasing consumer confidence in your services. If you choose to feature a video on your firm’s homepage, be sure to refer to our guide on using video media and YouTube in your firm’s marketing plan.
2. Prominently Feature Your Firm’s Mission Statement or Tagline
One of the most important things that your firm should have established from day one is a concise, complete mission statement that captures the essence of your firm: Your practice areas, your attorneys, and your professional priorities. It might also be a great idea to feature a quick “tagline” or catchy phrase that your law firm can apply to its practice, much like your mission statement.
Once you have either (or both) of these, be sure to feature them on your homepage prominently. Because these statements encapsulate everything you and your firm stand for, they should be one of the first things every online viewer sees and reads.
3. Show Off Your Firm’s Client Testimonials
After viewing visual graphics and your firm’s mission statement, another great element for viewers to see are testimonials by your firm’s clients. One of the best ways to demonstrate both your firm’s philosophy and its successful casework is through positive testimonials from previous clients who have achieved legal victories thanks to your firm.
Client testimonials deserve to be featured on your website’s homepage, simply because of the tremendous impact they can have on potential clients’ impressions of your firm. According to one study, about 72 percent of viewers who read a positive client testimonial or review will develop a more positive, trusting opinion of that business or service. That kind of marketing impact can help your site’s homepage tremendously.
On a final note: When considering the use of client testimonials, be sure to include video testimonials if possible. Written testimonials and quotations are impactful, but video marketing is a media favored by most viewers.
4. Display Your Awards, Recognitions, and Badges
Just as with client testimonials, any awards, recognitions, badges, or similar distinctions earned by your firm should be prominently featured on your website’s homepage. Not only will these boast the professional credentials that you can give to prospective clients seeking your services, but they can also showcase your legal achievements among peers and other businesses who stumble upon your site.
Beyond just displaying awards, recognitions, and badges that your firm has earned on your site’s homepage, be sure to include information about your attorneys’ specific professional successes, such as CLE presentations, serving on boards, volunteer work, and more. This information can be highlighted on your homepage if appropriate, but they should definitely be included on your About Us page.
5. Refer to Your Firm’s Blog Posts
First, if your firm’s website still doesn’t feature a blog, start one now.
Second, take full advantage of your content by referring to your latest or most popular blog posts at various points within your homepage’s body. Perhaps you want to mention your blog with an internal link that takes interested viewers to your blog portal straightaway. Maybe you prefer to showcase a sliding display of the most recent blogs, along with their accompanying titles and pictures. In whatever way you choose to make your blog stand out on your homepage, make sure it accomplishes one fundamental goal: Encourage potential clients to read your firm’s content.
6. Ask Engaging Questions
Depending on the structure of your homepage and overall website, you may find that asking short, simple questions can add a visually pleasing and informationally helpful body to your homepage. For example, breaking up your homepage into sections that are separated by bold questions like, “what are our clients saying about us?” or “what legal services do we specialize in?” can be surprisingly helpful for site navigation and encouraging further click engagement. Instead of throwing heavy, complex legal jargon at site viewers, be sure to keep the questions short, relatively simple, engaging, and easily answerable online. Then, point viewers in the direction of your blog (for more detailed answers) or to your Contact Us page for a consultation.
7. Engage with Viewers Through a Call to Action
Just like when asking engaging questions throughout your homepage, it’s also critical that you feature a short, concise, professional call to action somewhere on your homepage, as well.
The purpose of a call to action, as the name suggests, is to spur your reader into taking the final step of contacting you regarding your services. After reading a compelling mission statement or helpful blog post, potential clients should be steered gently into the direction of contacting your firm for more information or a consultation. By providing your phone number, email, or contact link right there, taking action is much easier for the reader. If a call to action is not included, your firm could be missing out on a lot of new business intake.
Curious to Learn More About Improving Your Firm’s Homepage? Contact Us Today
A homepage is the foundation for any great website, which in turn translates to the basis of any good marketing scheme. If your firm isn’t sure exactly how to get started on improving your homepage – or if you’re simply interested in improving your existing homepage’s look and structure – contact us today.
At Black Fin, we specialize in everything that your homepage needs to fit your firm perfectly: Strong content, great web design, extensive SEO services, and social media management. In tandem, our services can help take your website to the next level and boost your digital marketing results.
If you’re interested in learning more about our services, or if you want us to take a look at your website and see what can be improved, call us today. We can’t wait to get started.