According to the American Bar Association’s 2010 Legal Technology Survey Report, just over half of lawyers in solo practices and 81% of those working in law offices have websites. In today’s day and age, having a website is essential for any business, no matter the industry.
For lawyers, having a website is especially important. Your site will be your online representation; potential clients will check your site to determine your legitimacy and to ultimately decide if they want to hire you. According to a recent poll, 44% of respondents said that they were very or somewhat likely to check a lawyer’s own website, and that number will only increase in the years to come.
Of course, having a website isn’t enough to keep you in business. With the general public becoming increasingly tech-savvy, your site is going to be judged harshly. To demonstrate your value and attract business, you will need to create a highly impressive website. Here are three features every great legal services website must have to succeed.
- Responsive web design
More and more internet users are using mobile devices like smartphones to access the web. In fact, a growing number of consumers only use mobile devices to go online.A responsive web design creates a tailored experience for devices that use a range of screen resolutions. The last thing you want to do is alienate mobile visitors by presenting them with a site that is difficult to navigate on a phone or tablet. By optimizing your website for mobile users, you will make sure that your current and prospective clients can get the information or legal advice they need and call you immediately.
- Several methods of contact
Your website should make it easy for users to contact you for your legal services. That’s why the best sites provide more than one way to get in touch. Web designers recommend including a general inquiries contact form, a phone number in the header so that it appears on every page, and an email address listed for each individual attorney on their profile page. This may sound like overkill, but clients will appreciate having options.Also, some clients will have a stronger sense of urgency when it comes to hiring your legal services. For instance, more than 1.4 million people are arrested each year for a DUI first offense. These individuals will need to be able to find your contact information quickly without taking the time to search through your entire site. For your mobile site, consider adding a “click-to-call” button. Not only is this easier for potential clients, it allows you to keep track of exactly how many visitors found you through the web.
- A blog
Content marketing is one of the best ways for a law firm to attract new clientele. A blog demonstrates your knowledge about recent legislation and the law in general, and offers significant SEO value for your website as a whole. Creative and well-written blog content will contribute to your website’s ranking on the most popular search engines, driving more traffic to your website in the long run.
If your site is missing any of these features, it might be time for a makeover. If you have any additional ideas for optimizing a legal website, feel free to comment below.