Website Keys for Law Firms: How to Get Clients Online – Part 1
Today, the website for any law firm is a key component of successful marketing today. For your law firm to reach new people on the web, you have to have high-quality content and a relevant online presence to reach and inform potential clients. The following tips will assure your law firm website is successful in helping you reach a wider base of interested people. This is Part 1 of a 2 part blog series on Online Marketing for Law Firms.
A Note About Ethics
When advertising for your law firm it’s important to know what you can and cannot do online. First, never make claims you cannot back up. The statements you make have to be ones that can be proven. Second, don’t compare your firm to others. It’s simply not allowed. The job of your online marketing is to highlight what you can do, not make statements about others. Third, don’t make assurances that your past settlements are an exact statement of what you can get for other clients. Lastly, if your state requires it, register your advertisements and websites with the local government.
Effective Web Messaging And Website Design
Your web presence is critical to online marketing success. A business’s website should tell people what they need to know and your law firm’s site is no different. You want your site to inform people about who you are, what you do, the areas you specialize in and where you are located.
Think from the perspective of a first-time visitor. If you were a visitor to your site and didn’t know anything about your law firm, would you understand the firm’s core service area. Your firm’s website should explain clearly and upfront what you specialize in, why they should hire you, and how to reach you with phone numbers and emails being easy to find. Take time to get professional copywritten to say well on the web what you do.
Fast Loading Site Speed
With high-speed internet being widely available, people expect sites to load quickly and easily. If your law firm website takes too long to load, such as over 5 seconds, people will get frustrated and look elsewhere for the information and services they need. When designing your website, overly large images, video clips, and outdated design concepts or bad coding can slow it down. Your site should be designed with the latest design methods and programming standards to ensure it is as efficient as it can be. This is an often overlooked area of online marketing. You can get people to the site by ads, but if they have a poor experience on the site, they’ll leave.
Responsive Mobile Friendly Design
The modern internet user is most often on their smartphone or tablet. For many people, their smartphones are their primary method of accessing the internet and digital content. Your site should have an optimized mobile layout to make sure it works on the smaller screens and touchscreen design smartphone users are used to. A website that is only optimized for desktop or laptop computers will be hard for mobile users to browse and read, increasing visitor frustration. It’s a mobile-first world online, so ensure your online marketing starts with a website that is working very well on mobile.
It’s a good practice to allow satisfied customers to share their experience on your website. A dedicated area of testimonials that you select from happy clients and get their permission to post can go a long way in helping someone select your law firm. The testimonials should be specific to your core competency areas and not just general statements.
Blog Resource Center
One of the best practices you can do for your SEO and law firm online marketing is to showcase your expertise by having a blog resource center. By writing and sharing posts on a regular basis that inform and educate potential clients you can demonstrate your knowledge and authority and be viewed as the trusted resource and experts you are. This growing body of content online then helps your firm rank well in search engines for those topics and resources.
The Importance Of Online Reviews
Once your website has been optimized and is formatted with all the proper information the next step is to build your online reputation. Be sure to claim your business website under Google’s listings and collect reviews through communicating with customers after you provide successful service. Also, keep other online profiles such as Yelp, Yellowpages, Linkedin, and Findlaw up to date to not only collect more reviews but also guide people to your website.
As the above shows, there is more that goes into online marketing than might initially meet the eye. The speed is important because if your site is slow loading, people won’t take the time to stick around. If your site is not up to date with current design trends and accessibility consider hiring professional assistance to bring it into the modern era. A well-made site allows visitors easy access to information about your law firm which can encourage them to reach out to you for professional assistance.
Again, this post on website keys for law firms is Part 1 of 2. Stay tuned for Part 2 where I’ll outline online marketing and social media keys for law firms.