Affordable Law Firm Website Design: Why Cheap may not be the Answer

Affordable Law Firm Website Design: Why Cheap may not be the Answer

Consumer behavior has changed over time, as everyone is transitioning to the digital age. The yellow pages of the telephone directory have been the primary advertising venue for businesses and law firms for many decades.

The yellow pages have now been rendered obsolete by the increasing use of the World Wide Web.

The law industry needs to go along with the trend. This is especially for the number of people who rely on the internet to find a local business. If you want to increase your chances of acquiring new clients, your law firm needs to have a website.

Reasons your Law Firm Needs a Website

A website is a powerful tool to establish your business and build your brand. Your law firm is a business and brand; thus, you will need a website just like any other business.

Reason 1: Perfect Venue to Promote Legal Services

A well-created website details everything about your law firm, including lawyers, legal services, lawyers, contact information, business address, blogs, and testimonial from satisfied clients, as well as other pertinent information to help prospective clients consider your law firm.

Reason 2: Builds a Unique Brand for your Law Firm

A website creates the right image and helps build your law firm’s reputation.

Reason 3: Educates your Audience

A website can provide valuable information to your prospective clients. Video content and blogs educate potential clients, and they know more, trusting your brand,  and even solve simple legal issues while building your brand and promoting your legal services.

Choosing the right law firm to handle your legal issue entails a lot of research. Your website will provide valuable information to convince prospective clients to engage the services of your law firm. The About Us section of your website will help satisfy your potential clients that they will get positive results when availing of your legal services.

Reason 4: Builds Credibility and Trust

A website is a venue to brag about your law firm’s achievements. This is a way to display the knowledge and skills of your law to emphasize the level of your legal services. This builds credibility and trust.

High-value content also builds credibility and trust because prospective clients are always searching for proof before they entrust their fate in your hands. Your website will convince potential clients that you are all they need to solve their legal issues.

Reason 5: Powerful Marketing Tool

The internet is a powerful tool to reach a wide range of prospective clients that can overtime be converted into paying clients. Over 70% of people search for websites when they need legal services. A robust digital marketing campaign builds brand awareness leading to the acquisition of more clients.

An excellent digital marketing campaign can boost your website’s rank in Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs), allowing your law firm to attract more clients.

Reason 6: Keeps your Law Firm on Top of the Competition

Good customer support should be the foundation of every business. Your website can offer 24/7 customer support allowing prospective clients to get information about the firm’s legal services with the aim to convince them to try services. Existing clients can also get in touch with customer support to ask about updates of their cases.

A physical law firm office is no longer enough. Your law firm needs a website to have an online presence where most prospective clients turn to when they need legal services.

Reason 7: Qualities of a Good Law firm website

A well-built website increases traffic that is the source of acquiring potential clients. A poorly-built webpage, on the other hand, is a waste of money and a futile exercise.

Here are some of the best practices for law firm websites.

Has a Simple Interface

The best law firm website is intuitive and responsive both for desktops and mobile devices. It includes:

• Has a homepage containing the areas of law specializations of the law firm. It will assure prospective clients that they are at the right place to move through the sales funnel efficiently.

• Has an easy-to-read design, including optimal fonts and sizes and color combinations.

• Includes sufficient links for easy navigation but not so many as to confuse.

• Minimum pop-ups, flashy animations, and video and audio content because they can annoy visitors. Besides, they do not work well on mobile devices.

Includes Contact Information on Every Page

Your website aims to attract prospective clients; thus, you should display your contact information. Your law firm’s contact information should be the most accessible information visitors should find on your website.

Your contact information should not only be limited to the About Us and Contact Us pages, but it should also be seen on your website’s homepage and every page. Your contact information should include every prospective channel clients can get in touch with your law firm: phone, mobile, and e-mail. A chat box is also a powerful tool on your website.

Lists all Legal Services

A good website should showcase all the legal services offered by your website. A visitor should, at first glance, know whether the legal services you provide are what he needs. If your visitor (prospective client) cannot easily find this information, he will most likely click away.

The list of legal services you offer can be displayed on the homepage or a separate Service page.

Maintains Blogs

New and fresh content in the form of blogs that speak about legal services you offer, success stories of the firm, and educational articles should be part of your website. These blogs on your website are optimized and allow search engines to drive traffic to your site.

The best legal websites use relevant keywords in their articles to ensure Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Keywords should be used sufficiently. Thus, written materials should not be overfilled with keywords because it may create harmful effects. Content on your website should regularly be updated.

Includes Optimized Contact Forms

The best law firm website does not drown visitors with comprehensive forms. Extensive forms are useless if you do not provide potential clients with enough information to decide if they need your legal services.

A contact form included in your website should be simple, including the prospective client’s name, phone number, e-mail address, a brief explanation of his legal issue, and the preferred date and time for consultation. An easy-to-fill-up form will encourage prospective clients to fill it up.

Incorporates their Social Media Pages

Most of your business potential clients are currently on social media. Therefore, it is wise to integrate your social media sites within your website to expand your reach. Your social media accounts should be prominently listed on your website because your law firm’s life largely depends on the continuous flow of new clients.

Including a link to your social media pages such as Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+, and more will enable potential clients to engage more with your law firm online and access more information.

Includes a Powerful Call-to-Action

Include a compelling call-to-action (CTA) on your website. Many SEO tricks make clients click the CTA, but your site should seamlessly encourage potential clients to fill out the online form and select a legal service.

Uses High-Quality Photos

The best legal websites use high-resolution and high-quality photos, which should include pictures of your physical office, lawyers, and staff. Include a brief bio of the lawyers and their social media sites.  This will ensure potential clients that they will be dealing with a top-quality law firm.  Good quality photos also make websites appear more professional.

Includes Client Testimonials

When potential clients read about what past clients have to say about their law firm’s experience, it makes your law firm more credible and trustworthy. Client testimonials are the most effective strategy for content marketing.

The best web design professionals create the best websites for law firms.  Well-built websites do not come cheap. However, a well-build website provides the best brand imaging for your law firm that will translate to potential clients developing their trust and confidence with your law firm.

Well-built websites require a substantial investment. Mediocre websites are cheap. How can you spot the difference?

Well-Build Website  Mediocre Website
Designed to achieve law firm goals Not tailored to achieve law firm goals
Comes with clear navigation Difficult to navigate
Easy to access critical information. Difficult to find critical information
Easy-to-read copy Uses vague language
Loads quickly across all devices Long loading times
Optimized in search engines Not visible in search engines
Designed for mobile devices Not compatible with mobile devices

The list can go on.  The cost of a cheap law firm website may seem appealing until you realize that it does not help your firm acquire new clients. The realization will see the need to spend more money and time redesigning your website to achieve your desired results.

How Much Does It Cost to Build a Law Firm’s Websites?

There are many factors to be considered in designing a law firm website. Each element comes with a corresponding cost.

When sourcing out the right web designer, it is essential to note that some designers charge an hourly rate, some have a per-page rate, and others charge a flat rate. Regardless of the terms of payment, the cost of a law firm website depends on these factors:

What is the size of the website?

This includes the number of pages needed by your website. A law firm with 100 lawyers and ten areas of law specializations will have a costlier website than a law firm with five lawyers and three areas of law specializations.

Is it an existing site or a new site?

Starting from scratch will likely be costlier.  Redesigning an existing website with content and images will cost less.

To what extent do you want the website to be customized?

Ready-made templates for your law firm website are widely available for just a few hundred dollars. If you need a website to function just like a calling card, you can choose ready-made templates.

However, if you need a website to acquire new clients for your law firm, the site will need more functionality, and therefore a customized website is what you need.

Have you already written the content for the website?

If you already have high-value content on your website ready for SEO, you will be able to cut down on cost significantly.

Rate of the web design company

Designing a website entails a lot of hard work than you realize. It can get complicated, too. This is the reason customized websites are costlier than template sites.

Customized sites come with original photos and videos, while template sites use “stock” photos to fit the website design. Custom photos and videos are good for SEO and can, therefore, increase website traffic and conversions. Custom photos and videos can be costly.

Cheap is Never the Answer

An affordable website is more often a wrong business decision. Here are some of the pitfalls that can come with cutting costs and deciding on a cheap law firm website:

Many things can go wrong

Cheap websites are prone to hosting issues, DNS issues, hacks, and attacks. When these happen, it can take weeks for cheaper web designers to resolve these issues, which should not have occurred if the website was well-designed.

You will need to spend again to have your website redone.

A mediocre-designed website quickly becomes outdated. The savings you gained by going for cheaper web design or even more will be spent to redo the website. It will also derail your digital marketing efforts since your website’s problems often happen a few months after its launch.

Many cheaper websites experience “code rot” which is defined by Google as the slow deterioration in software performance. It also refers to the decline in software responsiveness leading to the software being unusable, faulty, and needing an upgrade.

A well-designed and optimized website can slow down code rot allowing longer website cycles and aid in SEO.

Low-cost websites also have old or outdated content management systems. This translates to performance issues and security vulnerabilities, which can cause real risk for your law firm.

You will most likely be “burned and churned.”

You always want to get the most value for everything you pay for, but you also get value based on what you pay for.

It is common for cheap website designers to create mediocre websites. They try to get as many clients as possible, do mediocre jobs, and hope for the best. They will be lucky with some of the websites they build, but most of the work will leave clients disappointed.

To avoid these pitfalls, qualify web designers based on the qualities of a well-designed website. Take a look at their past works and answer these questions:

• Does the website thoroughly explain what the business does?

• Is it easy to get in touch with the business?

• Does it show what the user needs to do without much thinking should they decide to buy something or engage in the business’s services?

If you answer yes to these questions, you have just visited a well-built website, and the web designer will do an excellent job with your law firm website as well.

Affordable Law Firm Website Design

If you visited a website and immediately left with the thought that you do not want to deal with this business, you will realize the importance of first impressions. You do not want visitors to your law firm website to have the same first impression of your site.

Studies reveal that it only takes less than 0.2s for a website visitor to form a first impression of your law firm as they visit your website.

It often happens that businesses spend so much on digital marketing such as Facebook Ads, AdWorks but are not generating sales on their website.

Looking closer, you will discover that these websites have well-designed ads and a significant social media presence. What seems to be the problem? They have a website that takes over 10 seconds to load and does not allow a good user experience.

Investing in a well-built website will create an excellent first impression for your visitors and will build the trust and confidence of potential clients to your law firm.

Buying an affordable and well-designed website means you are buying:

• Credibility

• Reliability

• Online safety

• Good first impressions and user experience for your potential clients

• Marketing advice and help

• Technical Help and support

All these things require a lot of time to create and are costlier. However, in the long-term, you will be spending less money by doing it right.

Choose a website developer/designer that is passionate about what he does. He will be able to build a website that will benefit your law firm in terms of acquiring new clients and increasing revenues.

Cutting costs is not always suitable for your law firm. Your website is the core of your law firm in-charge of promoting your legal services, building trust and confidence in your firm, and acquiring new clients. These objectives point to one goal- to increase revenues. Have an excellent website for your law firm!

Martin Vermaak

The Lawyer Marketing Pro Digital Marketing Agency for Lawyers and Law Firms.

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