Whether you are hiring a developer to design and publish a brand new legal website, or you want to refresh your current website, you may be wondering what features are essential when designing a law firm website. After all, your firm specializes in legal practices, not web design! So, what features should you include on your website? What types of calls to action are most effective? With an increase in expectations from prospective clients who are looking for a modern, easy-to-navigate website, it’s hard to know where to begin or even how to communicate your wishes to a web developer. In this post, we will share a few essential features every law firm should have to help guide your design.
Include a Compelling Call-to-Action
A call-to-action prompts a user who is already browsing your website to take the desired action, such as filling out a contact form or clicking on the phone number to call your firm. But with so much competition, how can you entice a user to contact your firm?
Dynamic headers or dynamic mastheads are the very first feature users see when they land on your website. To make them eye-catching, you’ll want to make them stand out. One way to achieve this is by adding a video instead of a static image to the masthead. This feature is eye-catching and a perfect way to highlight your differentiating factors. What makes your law firm better than your competitors? What practices do you specialize in? While a dynamic header isn’t a direct call-to-action, you can add a “Learn More” button in the header to take users to a page of your choice.
Have a Clear Call-to-Action
A clear call to action is essential for successful businesses, and law firms are no exception. To encourage a user to contact your firm, we recommend adding a clickable phone number at the top of your homepage. In addition, you may want to have your phone number listed on your Contact page as well. This way, if someone doesn’t want to fill out the form, they can call you instead. The goal is to make it easy for users to reach out to your firm with any questions.
Think about the main pages you want users to visit on your website. By having a web designer clearly label those pages, you are encouraging website visitors to click on those pages. Perhaps you want to direct their attention to your practice area, your about page, contact page, blog page, or introduce users to your firm’s attorneys. A good rule of thumb is to use 3-5 main navigation links to highlight your most important pages. This elicits the appearance of a clean, well-organized website and encourages users to click on one of those pages that are of importance.
Showcase Your Practice Areas
As you already know, there are various types of lawyers, so it’s essential to communicate to your audience what areas you specialize in. Whether you take on personal injury cases or specialize in divorce law, it’s important to clearly define your areas of practice so users can easily tell if and how you can help them. Below are a few additional ways in which you can show off your practice.
Highlight Awards and Attorney’s Experience
You can win over your audience when you offer tangible examples of how your law firm has excelled thus far. For example, if an attorney at your law firm won the Samuel L. Smith award, which is the highest level of achievement given by the American Bar Association (ABA), you’d want to add this under the area of practice in which that attorney specializes. It’s also credible to add your attorney’s academic credibility, especially if they received their degree from a prestigious school. Additionally, if your law firm won an award for the Best New Law Firm, this is certainly worth adding to your website. The goal is to provide examples of how your law firm has achieved in the past and how that experience will help you win future or prospective client cases.
Update News and Blog Post Categories
Another way you can highlight your law firm’s specialties is by writing and posting blog posts on a consistent basis. This not only shows users that your firm is active on the website, but it is a great place to write about recent awards your firm received, share a post where you answer questions you commonly get asked, and more. Essentially, think about what a prospective client would want to know and write posts that answer those commonly asked questions. The News or Blog section of a website also provides a great opportunity to boost your Search Engine Optimization (SEO). If you want to appear at the top of search results it’s essential to post SEO-friendly content on a regular basis. Not a writer or simply don’t have time? Our team specializes in SEO and is happy to help!
Our final tip is to highlight client reviews on your website. If you think about how you chose a restaurant to dine at, we are willing to bet that the reviews you read on Google were a large deciding factor. Since law firms have niche practice areas, it’s more challenging to get recommendations from friends or coworkers when it comes to choosing the best law firm for your needs, which is why reviews are key. Besides adding credibility to your law firm, client testimonials are typically written by previous clients in layman’s terms which makes it easy for prospective clients to read and resonate with. The more client reviews you can showcase, the easier it will be for prospective clients to imagine themselves working with your law firm.
In sum, all law firm websites should have a clear call to action, a page that expands on your practice areas, a section or page that highlights your firm’s awards, and a reel of client reviews. While there are other features you can utilize to make your website even more appealing, these are the features you should prioritize on your website.