One of the most daunting tasks of any new legal practice isn’t how to build a solid base of clients or expand into new communities. It isn’t about demographics or experience or relationships. It’s about what to show those with whom you network, and how. For example, how does a lawyer with a new firm build the perfect website to interact with clients? You have years of legal education behind you — but how do you share that experience in a few pages on one screen?
You made it through law school, so we will assume you are not easily overwhelmed with this kind of task. It’s just one more thing to learn, after all, and it doesn’t take as much time or monetary investment as you might think.
First, check out matteuccifamilylaw.com. What do you see? The answer is: it depends. On your desktop browser, you see the face of the firm, contact information, a call for consultation, phone number, access to other pages, and access to payment in addition to an explanation of the type of law firm. You also see important credentials. Scroll down to find testimonials, “about” information, practice areas, and reasons why it might be smart to choose this particular family firm over similar ones. All this is presented with a simple yet attractive color scheme.
How you view the website matters, though. Although this website and similar websites are also available on mobile, they are optimized for both — but perhaps more amenable on desktop. The reason for that is simple. Most prospective clients are already married with children. That means the demographic is older than the one another might be searching for. Criminal defense firms should make sure their websites are best viewed on mobile, for example.
The aforementioned website is nearly perfect, but the owners might benefit from making it more interactive or using videos to grab attention. Videos that “auto start” can be grating for prospective clients, but background videos can achieve an interactive feel without becoming overbearing.
What should you keep in mind when building your website? First and foremost, speak directly to prospective clients. What are their concerns? How can you solve their problems? How do you add value over another firm? Figure out what clients you hear from the most, and then target them directly.
You want to make sure the site uses all available space. Make it easy to navigate but pack information tightly. Users will always benefit from a decent search mechanism, so include one at the top of every page and blog, if you have one — and speaking of a blog, you should definitely have one. These can generate income all by themselves. Add a sitemap. This is like a search feature for search engines. When they crawl your website and find reliable information they “think” customers might want, your website will be boosted in the search engine’s rankings.