When you’re considering launching or updating your law firm website, it’s critical to include the following six pages:
- Attorney bio
It isn’t enough to create these pages quickly. Put thought, effort, and professional services to use in planning, designing, and building them. Keep reading for some of my top tips for what to include on each page.
1. Home Page
I’ve written at length about how to create a successful law firm website homepage. Highlights of what’s most important for your homepage from a content perspective include:
- Client-centric messaging. Your website isn’t about you. It’s about your prospective clients. They need your services, which is why they’ve come to your site in the first place. Acknowledge where they are, identify how you can help them, and show them the transformation that could occur in their lives if they choose to work with you.
- Calls to action. Your website’s homepage is useless if you do not make it painstakingly clear what you want your website visitors to do once they land there.
- Answers to basic questions. Make it immediately clear what you do, for whom you do it, and where you do it. Prospective clients come to your website with specific questions in mind. The law firm website that answers those questions effectively wins the prize every time.
Your About page is the second-most visited page on your site, after your homepage. A well-executed About page includes the following:
- A detailed description of your unique selling proposition (USP). What do you do differently in your practice area? What about your background makes you different from your top competition?
- Insight into your firm’s values and mission. Which values underpin your law practice? Name them! Doing so shows a bit of who you are as a human and begins to build trust with your prospective clients.
- A discussion of what it’s like to work with you. What does customer service look like in your firm? How do you interact with your clients? What do you require of your clients once they hire you as their attorney?
- An introduction to your team. Who works at your firm? With whom will the client interact? Why does it matter who you have on your team, i.e., how does your staff makeup benefit your clients?
The About page is also an ideal place to insert a testimonial or two and link to your Testimonials page.
A word of caution: Even though this page is technically about your firm, it isn’t about you. It’s about your audience. Weave in content that speaks directly to your prospective clients’ pain points and goals.
3. Attorney Bio
Lawyers are notorious for creating bio pages that regurgitate their CVs. Don’t do that.
Your bio is the perfect place for you to showcase your personality and humanity. It’s where you can dive into why you do what you do, how you do it best for your clients, and what extraordinary things you do to make sure you deliver results.
Include an engaging photo of you on this page. Hire a professional photographer to get the right photo and update your headshot every few years.
Your Services page, or Practice Areas page, or What We Do page, or…well, you get the idea. This page is all about selling what you do to prospective clients. It bears a lot of responsibility because it needs to clearly describe what you do and how potential clients can benefit by working with you.
If you have a niche practice, you can get away with your Services page speaking directly to that niche (e.g., Family Law, Business Law, Nonprofit Legal Services). If you have a broader practice, then your initial Services page should act like an overview page, offering highlights of each sub-practice area you cover. In this situation, then you’ll want to create practice-area specific services pages.
- 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
- 49% of consumers need at least a four-star rating before they choose to use a business.
- 80% of consumers say the star ratings they trust the most are 4.0, 4.5, and five stars.
This boils down to one thing: you must seek out client testimonials, and you must promote them on your website.
When asking clients for a review, do not give specific questions to answer or a form on which to fill in blanks. Instead, ask them for their thoughts about how your services helped take them from where they were before they found you to where they are now. They can speak to what it was like to work with you, the specific steps you took to help them, and the things they were able to do based on the outcome of their case.
This one may seem like a no-brainer, but I often see firms get this page wrong or leave it out altogether.
Never make a person think when they’re on your site. They want to know who you are, what you do, if you can help them, and how to contact you. An easy way to encourage them to contact you is to build a short contact form on your Contact page and include your Contact page on your top-level navigation.
Do not overlook the importance of content on your Contact page. Include your firm address and phone numbers. Include a short call-to-action paragraph that summarizes your practice area and the geographic area you serve. Then encourage prospective clients to fill out the form on the page.
Bonus Page: Case Results
If your state allows it, and if it makes sense for your practice area, include a page that offers highlights of results you have achieved for past clients. Follow attorney ethics rules by adding a disclaimer like, “Past results are no guarantee of future outcomes.” Also be sure to avoid disclosing information that would violate your attorney-client relationship.
When crafting case summaries, do your best to show the full story of what was involved. Highlight the type of case. Provide an overview of what led to the issue. Identify what the client’s goal was for your representation. Then provide the outcome.
Focus on Quality, Not Quantity
Whether your website has six pages on it or 600, it’s important to remember that your goal with all your content is to provide useful, engaging copy that speaks directly to your prospective clients. Don’t get hung up on how many words you should have on each page or how many pages you should have on each topic. Instead, write copy that answers questions your prospective clients have. Speak to their concerns. Show them how you have helped others and how you can help them. Only by doing this will you find your site to be a successful marketing tool for your law firm.
This post originally on Lawyerist.com on 8/7/18