Do You Really Need An Attorney Website?
Though it is often tempting to stay in the box of your own industry when it comes to website design, attorneys could benefit significantly from looking outside the traditional law firm website design. The digital landscape has changed substantially in the past year, and in 2017, lawyers need to draw website design inspiration from external sources.
Attorney Websites Are Lacking Engagement
It is undeniable that media websites are some of the most popular and engaging sites on the web today. While it is true that the news has a leg up in the field of content that users are compelled to seek out, the amount of time users spend on the site is no mistake. These sites are also designed for maximum engagement. You can use the same tricks and design features that media websites use on your firm’s site to improve engagement on your site.
Cross Promote With Suggested Content
The use of “suggested content” is critical in the engagement potential of these sites. If your firm has put time and effort into content marketing, developing a variety of articles or blog posts to inform potential clients about both the law and the benefits of working with you, you can take inspiration from these news sites to get the maximum benefit from it. Never let your site visitor come to a “dead end.” Instead, provide options for learning more about the topic; you might link to other blog posts about the same services, direct visitors to whitepapers or case studies, or provide a contact form where they can reach out to get more information from an attorney.
Make sure you use this opportunity to cross promote the newest content on your site; this is an excellent way to keep your site feeling fresh for visitors and continuing to add new value to older pages. Search engines have permanently changed the way that people use the internet; you can no longer assume that a visitor will start at your homepage. Instead of treating your homepage as the “front door” of your website, make sure that more important information and content is readily available throughout the site.
Content Strategy for Attorneys
Implementing a suggested content strategy not only helps your visitors learn more about the capabilities of your firm, but also improves your overall search ranking. Search engines track how long visitors spend on sites, and how many pages they visit before leaving the website. By suggesting related articles or other content to visitors, you offer opportunities for them to explore your site, visiting more pages and staying on-site longer. Visitors staying on your site tells the search engine that your website is helpful and makes it more likely to return your site as a search result for other users.
In addition to suggested content, take the opportunity to introduce calls to action throughout the site, like asking visitors to submit their email to receive a useful worksheet related to the topic or to get in touch with an attorney. When you collect contact information, you can reach out to provide further services and do more advanced tracking of your visitors. Depending on the technology you have in place, you may even be able to start implementing personalization. This new web trend uses data about the visitors to your site to deliver a unique web experience personalized specifically for them.
For example, if a visitor researched real estate law on your site in the past, personalization software would allow your website to recognize them when they return and include content related to real estate law on the homepage where you might not otherwise feature it. Your site may also be able to be personalized based on location, featuring one type of content for visitors who are in your county and another for those who are accessing your site from farther away. Having this kind of information about your visitors and the ability to show them what they are most interested in will help you increase site engagement and the likelihood of converting visitors to clients.
Ditch The Typical Lawyer Website
Instead of staying within your own industry for attorney website design inspiration, consider what strategies you can adopt from some of the world’s most popular sites. Many media sites have lead the charge in new technology and methods to keep users entertained and engaged in the site for as long as possible. You can implement many of these strategies, like recommended content, calls to action to help you collect personal information, and site personalization on your firm’s website to improve your own engagement rates with visitors and potential clients.