Over the last decade and a half, most successful law firms have shifted a considerable amount of their marketing and advertising resources away from print, television, and radio and towards online mediums like PPC ads, social media, and content marketing. And while just about every law firm has invested in a website, there’s a big difference between having a site and extracting value from it.
The 4 Elements Your Site Needs
Web design and development is something each law firm has to think about through the lens of branding. However, there are some specific elements that your site needs, regardless of your area of law and target audience. These elements include:
What was once an optional strategy for making a website stand out is now a must-have. With users accessing websites from a variety of devices – including smartphones, tablets, laptops, and desktop computers – you need a site that automatically adapts to the size of the screen without negatively impacting usability or visual design.
Responsive web design is the gold standard of modern website development, so make sure you’re prepared. If you currently have a desktop version and mobile version of your site, it’s imperative that you make the switch as soon as possible.
Consistent Color Scheme
A professional website should offer visitors a cohesive experience from the moment they land on your homepage until the second they leave. One of the ways you can establish some visual consistency is by utilizing a coordinated color scheme.
As a rule of thumb, you want to stick with two or three main colors throughout your web design. Any more than this and you risk distracting visitors. Any fewer and the site will look bland and lifeless. If you’re unsure of how to select a color scheme, this primer on color psychology will prove helpful.
Lead Capture Forms
Unlike some businesses, a law firm can’t really make a “sale” directly from its website. You’re selling an intangible good – a service – and the website itself is incapable of being monetized. This means your website is really a glorified lead magnet.
In order to get the most out of your site, you need to implement lead capture forms that help you collect information on the potential clients you’re nurturing. You can see an example of what this looks like in practice by checking out the Edwards & Patterson Law site. Notice the simplicity of the lead capture form – just a name and phone/email – and how it offers a simple call-to-action (“Talk to a lawyer for free”).
Because a law firm website is designed to nurture leads, you need to be sure that your site is educating and informing (not just delivering a sales pitch). The best way to do this is through the creation of resourceful content.
The Stimmel, Stimmel, & Smith site is a good example. They feature a number of educational articles and blog posts on topics that are relevant to the audience. There are some calls-to-action in these articles, but each piece of content focuses on informing the reader first and foremost. As a result, visitors leave the site feeling like they’ve learned something.
Set Your Firm Up for Success
It’s not enough to have a website. If you want to maximize the value of your online presence, you must be sure you’re doing everything you can to attract leads and convert them into clients. By developing a responsive site, using a consistent color scheme, integrating lead capture forms, and creating educational content, you can leap past the competition.