Businesses rely on a clear and effective website to attract customers, provide information, distinguish themselves from competing services, and convert site visits into sales. However, as more retailers and services set up websites, it’s essential that you take specific steps to maximize your website’s performance. Whether your law firm has been using the same website for several years or you are in the process of creating a website for the first time, it’s worth taking some time to understand the best practices surrounding effective website design. This post will explore some of the do’s and don’ts of creating an engaging, client-centered website to attract more clients to your growing law practice.
Do: Focus on Your Local Presence
As search engines like Google evolve, local search engine optimization (SEO) is becoming more important than ever. When people enter a search query, the algorithm will use their location to provide results and services in their area. By integrating your primary location into headings, calls to action, and other areas of your site where mentioning the city or town feels most natural, search engine algorithms will use this information to prioritize your position on the search results pages for those looking for legal assistance in your community. Additionally, people enjoy knowing that their attorney is an integral part of the local community. If possible, include your volunteer work or other signs of your investment in your local area—the Attorney Bio or About pages are great places to mention this information.
Don’t: Bombard Site Visitors With Dense Legal Jargon
People in need of legal services want their attorneys to be knowledgeable and experienced in a particular practice area. However, this doesn’t mean that they want to read dense paragraphs full of legal terminology. When writing content for your legal website, consider what your clients respond to most. Rarely do people gravitate toward long blocks of text, as they prefer shorter, easily digestible lines of text that provide reassurance and clear steps to connect searchers with the law firm as quickly and efficiently as possible. Short bursts of text surrounded by ample space create a calmer, more inviting reading experience.
Do: Make the Most of Prominent “Hero” Sections
If someone has a legal issue, they want to find a trustworthy attorney immediately. They usually search for a law firm in their area, click on the top few websites on the search results page, and scan the websites to determine which site is the most appealing and promising. People often evaluate a website in a matter of seconds before deciding whether to click away or continue exploring the site. Knowing that you only have the briefest of moments to capture someone’s attention, use specific strategies to increase the chances of keeping the visitor engaged and interested in your website. For example, use the “Hero” section near the top of the homepage to display your client-focused core mission. This is an excellent opportunity to communicate who you are in just a few words. Additionally, make sure your page loads quickly (ideally, under 3 seconds) to prevent site visitors from growing impatient and clicking away.
Don’t: Make the Website Too Busy or Over-Complicated
As emerging research reveals that website visitors naturally prefer cleaner and simpler website designs, now is not the time to include too many photos or icons. A visually cluttered website can overwhelm visitors, even on a subconscious level. The eye prefers quick-loading websites with simple, clean, calming aesthetics and easy-to-digest content. Avoid scrolling text or animated components, which tend to distract and detract from your site’s message and accessibility. Prioritize simplicity over ornateness, and you’re likely to find that site visitors respond more quickly and positively to your website.
Do: Show Clients Who You Are
With so many law firms to choose from, people want to know more about the people behind the profession. While qualities like trustworthiness, authority, and experience are all important to clients, they also want to know about your communication style and what drives you to practice law. Consider updating your Attorney Bio page to go beyond your education, qualifications, and professional accomplishments. Find ways to display who you are and what motivates you, both in and out of the office. Writing a brief paragraph about what inspires you to practice law, how you give back to your community, and what your interests and hobbies are can go a long way in showing clients a complete picture of the attorney they will be entrusting with their legal matters.
Website Design is an Ever-Evolving Process
Once you’ve updated your website to appeal more directly to search engines and potential clients, it’s natural to feel a sense of accomplishment with completing this task. However, website design is an ongoing process, as search engine algorithms change over time and people start gravitating towards different elements of professional websites. Recognizing that website design is a continuously evolving process can help you stay current and focused on how well your website is performing, allowing you to make adjustments as you move toward your desired goals.
If you are looking for ways to grow your legal practice and attract more clients, call LegalRev at (800) 893-2590 to learn more about your options.