If you’re running a law practice, there’s never been a better time to upgrade to a new website or improve your existing one. Having built the best law firm websites for many years, the team at dNovo Group has gathered a list of 10 law firm web design tips that will ensure you not only maintain top rankings on search engines but also retain the web visitors that land on your site and convert them into loyal clients.
What Do The Best Law Firm Websites Have In Common?
Law firm website design involves a lot more than just making your web pages look pretty. It’s about how people interact with the law firm’s website, whether it drives leads and conversions, as well as how effectively search engines like Google can crawl the web pages.
The best law firm websites are also designed to load efficiently, perform great on mobile devices, and should be easily found online. In fact, before you spend so much money on law firm marketing tactics like PPC advertising, pay attention to where you’re driving the traffic – your law firm’s website. If the law firm website design is shoddy, it means that you will be wasting your advertising efforts.
A quick question law firms need to ask themselves is – how many leads have you received in the last year? Your law firm website should provide a consistent supply of leads by making your law practice prominent on search engines. Through law firm SEO and effective web design, you should not only rank for relevant keywords but also enhance your authority and trust in the legal industry.
10 Tips For Building The Best Law Firm Website
1. Focus On A Primary Goal
First things first, what is the main desired goal of your law firm website? For most law practices, the idea is to get more leads online. If this is your case, every element that forms your law firm web design should push people towards this goal. Don’t randomly select design and layout elements before understanding how each of them helps push website visitors to convert into leads and ultimately clients.
2. Think About The Website Structure
The best law firm websites will have a proper foundation. This simply means that users can find an ideal path when browsing through the site and easily get the help or information they need. Keep in mind that not all of your website visitors will land on the homepage.
The structure of those internal pages will play a huge on how your website is perceived by users and search engines. Make it easy for users to move from your homepage to your practice area pages by including them in your main navigation which is prominently displayed on every page.
3. Quality And Optimized Visual Content
Bad photography will never set your law firm’s website apart. Put a little more effort into the photos that display your law firm, and it will be worth the investment. Remember that people will probably notice at least one photo of your law firm the minute they land on your law firm’s website.
It should go without saying that law firms need to avoid just grabbing any image from the internet because of copyright infringement issues. Use stock photos as a temporary solution but aim at taking your own photos that display your lawyers and law offices. A few photo ideas that you can invest in for your law firm website include:
- Photos of your building
- Photos of your team
- A video of a recent team-building
- Video testimonials
Before adding these photos, consider technical issues such as compressing them before uploading them on the website. Uncompressed images will slow down your site and compromise your law firm SEO. You’ll also want to make sure that all photos you upload have a keyword in the image file name and alt attributes. It’s also a good idea to include captions in videos and photos so that search engines can understand what the content is about.
4. Provide Some Form Of Social Proof
Clients will always want to work with law practices that have already offered or are currently offering the services they are looking for. This means that your law firm website shouldn’t make a visitor feel like they are the first client.
There are different ways for law firms to enhance social proof on their websites:
- Provide case studies: They show that you’ve had successful cases in the past. Ask your clients for permission to share their stories. Most people will agree to this if you keep them anonymous. Case studies on law firms’ websites help people going through similar situations to see that they can get a positive experience working with you.
- Include testimonials: Testimonials can be short 1-2 sentence quotes from former clients that are shared across different website pages or brief videos highlighting a specific client’s journey working with your law firm. Video testimonials are excellent, even though it can be difficult to convince customers to record them.
- Showcase reviews: These are often a lot more general than testimonials as they don’t get into the details of the case.
- Display how many people you have helped: Law firms can showcase how much money has been awarded to their clients as compensation. This, together with case studies and testimonials, is especially critical for small law firms to create social proof.
- Include endorsements you have from respectable lawyers, judges, or personalities in the legal field: Endorsements on law firms’ websites are a mark of trust and credibility.
5. Avoid Thin Content
Content is still a critical aspect of law firm marketing. Law practices have a sea of content that they can cover and display themselves as an authority on any legal subject. This content gives you votes in the search engine ranking world. It makes it easy for Google to select your law firm’s website over a competitor’s.
If there’s little to cover on a given topic, consider combining the content with an existing article that is closely related instead of making a dedicated page for it. However, if you can figure out how to stretch the content and cover as much as possible, it deserves a page on its own.
6. Keep Your Website Content Dynamic
Make an effort to post content regularly on your website. Lawyer websites with evergreen content are favoured more by search engines over those with stale content.
The advantage of having a schedule and sticking to it is that it allows you to post more content on your website, which makes Google bots/spiders revisit the site multiple times to check for updates. If you stop updating the website with fresh content, Google will stop sending their bot your way, and this will affect your rankings.
7. Keep An Eye On Load Times And Page Speed
How fast is your law firm website? If your website visitors have to wait longer than 3 seconds for the page to load, you’re risking them bouncing off and leaving your website completely. You can use a simple PageSpeed tool to test how fast your site is.
8. Get Your Call To Actions Right
A Call to Action or CTA is simply a tool you use on the law firm website to tell visitors what you’d like them to do. Once someone finds their way to your website, there’s no shame in telling them what action you’d want them to take.
There are many rules to designing effective CTAs. They include:
- Make all the CTAs noticeable and ensure they’re not buried in the text
- Don’t jump into placing a CTA too early on the web page
- Use effective words on your CTAs. Changing simple wording from ‘submit’ to ‘find out more’ can make a big difference in conversion rates.
- Avoid using ambiguous language on your CTAs. You need to be concise because this is the moment when your visitor is about to convert into a lead.
- CTAs should appear on every single page, including the thank you page.
9. Make Use Of Videos
Lawyer websites become more interactive with proper use of videos. Videos offer web users a richer experience. They allow potential clients to put a face to your brand, which makes you more trustworthy and likeable. A few video ideas you can implement for your law firm website include:
- Recording a video for each FAQ on your law firm website
- Recording basic videos to cover each practice area
- Consider adding video testimonials of customers
- Short videos that showcase your team of lawyers
To avoid bogging down your website with video content, don’t upload them on your own server. Instead, host them from YouTube, then embed them on your website.
10. Graphics And White Space
Graphics, typography, and white space, when used well, can help your website users scan through your pages more quickly and get the information they need with ease. Use adequate whitespace to allow graphic elements on your law firm website to breathe.