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Lawyer Web Design: Focus Less on the ‘Wow,’ and More on the Client

Usability is the number one priority when creating an attorney website, focusing on the clients’ needs is how your law firm can see an increase in inquiries.


/// 10/26/2011

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Dallas, Texas-- Lawyer Web design today is much different than it was 10 years ago, because now there is an immense amount of interactive and flashy tools and features that you can incorporate into your lawyer website. Many law firms are looking for that “wow factor” and want to stand out from the competition when creating their law firm’s website. But, the bells and whistles could actually overshadow your law firm’s core message.

Too often we focus on the bells and whistles that come with a website and miss the core message that our prospects/clients want and need to see. Instead of focusing on the “wow”—focus on your audience, who is on your lawyer website for a reason: They need a qualified attorney to represent their case.

The focus should always be on the user experience, not on what massages our egos or the programmer uses to impress you. Usability should be the top priority when working with a web designer to create your attorney website; because if the potential client can’t navigate your page easily, then you’re not going to get new cases. In fact, a flashy site can be more cumbersome to navigate.

A few areas of usability an effective lawyer website should focus on include:

• Navigability: Visitors to your lawyer website should be able to easily locate all your information on the site through navigation menus, search boxes and links. Having a well-placed navigation bar, like on the top of the website, can help your potential clients find and access important information easily. This will help eliminate your website’s bounce rate and keep people on your lawyer website.

• Readability: Consumers are on your lawyer website to learn more about your law firm, so give them something to read. Having quality content on your website’s pages, which isn’t heavy in legal jargon, can help give the potential client a better experience and help SEO efforts. Incorporating a law firm blog on your site is also another good idea to create content and establish confidence with the potential client.

• Accessibility: Almost everyone needs a lawyer at some point, including people with disabilities. Incorporating features that cater to the disabled can broaden your reach with potential clients. In addition, the mobile Web is an up and coming avenue in which people are accessing the web. Making your lawyer website mobile Web-friendly will allow people who are using smartphones, tablets, iPads, web-enabled TVs and game consoles to access your website easily. By failing to include these features, your law firm can miss out on a large pool of consumers who are seeking the assistance of an attorney.

• Speed:  If your website is taking more than a minute to load, chances are people are clicking off as fast as they clicked onto your attorney website. Having a fast website is key in eliminating the bounce rate and keeping potential clients from leaving your site for another lawyer website. In today’s society no one has patience, so if it’s taking forever for a consumer to access your website’s information, they are likely just going to move on to the next lawyer website.

• Experience: Overall, this is the most important factor for your lawyer website. If potential clients don’t have a good experience while visiting your site, then they are likely not going to call your law firm to speak with an attorney. The best way to find out how well consumers are experiencing your website is to talk to them about it and ask them to fill out a survey about your website. Through that information, you and your web designer can work together to make your website fit better to the consumers needs.

About the writer:
Rene Perras is a lawyer Web design consultant, who has worked alongside law firms of all types to help build effective lawyer Internet marketing campaigns for over 20 years. For a free consultation about an attorney website, please contact Rene Perras at 720-ONE-RENE or visit Cepac.com



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