It is important for law firms to stay up to date with current technology. Apart from using the latest apps, they should also focus on developing their presence online. Having a website for your law firm is integral, as it makes your practice accessible to a wider audience. You cannot always rely on word-of-mouth and newspaper ads to gain attention.
As more people rely on the web to search for the services they need, having your own website makes it easier to connect with potential clients. You just need to know how to build a website that works well not only in attracting leads but also in converting these into clients.
You wouldn’t want to settle for the bare minimum when it comes to building a professional website for your law firm. Here are the differences between a great website and a basic one.
1. A clear intent
Before you get around to building a website for your legal practice, it’s important to identify the reason for the project. The best way you can approach this is to look at your firm’s overall goals for the year. Are you looking to grow your revenue streams? Are you focusing more on raising brand awareness and improving your reputation?
The success of your website depends on specific objectives. Targeting goals that are too broad won’t benefit your firm in the long run. You will need to identify what matters the most to your practice right now.
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2. A user-friendly interface
When building a website, it’s important that you make it easy and convenient for visitors to use. Designing an effective interface matters for keeping people interested in the services you offer.
A well-designed website can do more in keeping people engaged for a long time until they are ready to convert, while a website with a confusing layout will only frustrate visitors. If you don’t want to lose potential clients, you need to look for web design templates that are clean and responsive.
3. Relevant and engaging information
The legal world is full of highly technical terms, and people are more likely to engage if you are able to communicate difficult concepts to them using simple and concise language.
While it’s always great to demonstrate how much you know about the law, you will only push people away if the content on your website reads like the terms and conditions of a product.
You will want to communicate what you can do for potential clients in a straightforward manner. Whether you specialize in personal injury law or intellectual property law, it’s always possible to showcase your knowledge without turning people off.
Your website helps you build valuable relationships. You need to make the most of it by writing clear and actionable web page copy. It seems simple on the surface, but writing web page content involves a great deal of research and planning.
The key to effective content writing is to use a conversational tone. You wouldn’t want to keep repeating the same phrases just to sound sophisticated. After all, visitors will focus on what you are trying to say rather than how you say it.
4. A mobile-friendly design
Potential clients are using mobile devices to search for firms that cater to their needs. It’s more convenient and allows for instantaneous communication if these people are likely to end up becoming your clients.
For this reason, you wouldn’t want to use a website theme that doesn’t adjust automatically depending on the screen size or orientation. Thankfully, many website templates are optimized to fit a variety of screen sizes, from smartphones to tablets. However, it’s still important to find a mobile-optimized theme for your website that matches the tone and feel of your law firm. As a good rule of thumb, try viewing a template using your own mobile device to see if it’s the right fit for your website.
5. Short loading times
When it comes down to convenience and engagement, speed matters. If a website takes more than three seconds to load, the visitors are less likely to stay on the page. On the other hand, if your site loads instantaneously, then people will be willing to explore what else is on your website.
It is for this reason that reducing the loading speed of your firm’s website is critical to your success in building and nurturing relationships with potential clients. You can start by compressing your content and using plugins that aren’t heavy. Apart from that, you should also reduce the number of HTTP requests your site makes and remove any redundant and unnecessary characters from the source code.
Now that you have learned the elements of a great website for your law firm, you will need to start building one. Here are a few of the best practices you might want to follow.
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6. Highlight your services and areas of specialty
By providing as much information as possible about your areas of practice helps potential clients know that you are the right firm for their legal needs. Just be sure to keep the content on the homepage simple and personal. A good rule of thumb is to address your visitors directly.
For example, if your firm represents workers who are injured due to employer negligence, write something along the lines of: “Injured on the Job? Get the Settlement YOU Deserve!” Writing great web copy seems easy, but it takes skill to come up with content that reels the right people to your practice.
7. Opt for a simple yet eye-catching design
Designing an eye-catching website for your firm is a challenge in itself. You don’t want it to be bland and boring, but at the same time, you don’t want to have anything chaotic.
The safest choice you can make is to opt for a website template that offers a perfect balance using a simple interface. You only need to give it a unique twist so it’s distinguishable from other sites that may be using the same template.
While minimalist websites are widely popular at the moment, you will want your firm to stand out. Try experimenting with different themes and add features that other law firms lack. Your website is brand material in itself and it’s important to pass it off as original.
8. Balance out the text with visuals
You’ll want to avoid using long blocks of copy on your website to keep people’s attention, so consider balancing it out with visual content. For this, add high-quality photos and videos that give visitors a good view of your firm. You can also create infographics and slideshows that can provide a simplified explanation for certain concepts of the law.
It also helps to write blogs that address certain issues or questions. Make sure to provide visual relief by maintaining enough white space around each article and adding high-quality photos and graphics. Take care not to overpopulate your web pages with too many visual assets.
You should also make sure that all visual elements don’t clash with each other. Brand consistency is crucial, so use only content that matches the requirements of your firm’s brand kit.
9. Make time for keyword research
Building a website for your firm doesn’t end with creating content. In order to reach out to people who are looking for the legal services your firm specializes in, you need to develop an effective keyword strategy.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a crucial component in web development. You will want your website to be on the top of the search results. In order to do that, you need to use certain keywords that your target audience is using.
As you build your keyword list, make sure that it contains phrases related to the location you are serving and your areas of practice. If your firm specializes in corporate governance in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, you could include “business attorney DFW” as a target keyword.
If you are not sure if you are doing it right, you can use keyword research platforms that will point towards high-value keywords that have a higher search volume and generate the most clicks. Apart from Google’s Keyword Planner, you can also use tools like SpyFu, Moz, UberSuggest, or SEMRush for zeroing in on keywords that will deliver the best opportunities for your law firm.
If you are still at a dead-end when it comes to SEO, you can recruit a digital marketing specialist to help your law firm attain a better rank in the search results pages.
10. Enhance data security
Building a great website is not just about aesthetics and performance. You also need to make sure you have the right cybersecurity tools in place. Data breaches even in law practice websites can lead to costly problems.
In the age of IoT, you must never put your clients at risk. As you focus on building an eye-catching website, make sure to install security plugins to protect sensitive information.
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There’s a lot more to keep in mind when building a great website for your law firm, but the tips above should help you get started.