So your law firm now has a website – good for you! But did you remember to put in all the pages that are supposed to be there? Hopefully, the expert you hired, did, but there’s no harm in knowing for yourself, right? Understand why these seven pages should form an integral part of your website and you will have made a very good beginning with establishing your online presence.
1. Who are you?
History of the firm is not enough – people like to know who they will be working with. Definitely have biographies of your employees with photographs. We are calling this one page, but in reality, this will likely be several pages in a single category. The goal is to get your prospective clients to see your lawyers as approachable human beings who are good at their job. The language should be such that the lay person can understand. While the list of awards and achievements is a must, it should validate the trust generated by the description of the person, not overwhelm the viewer. Perhaps, it is a good idea to keep those in a separate section towards the end of the page.
2. Who are you, again?
Specialization is the name of the game. If you have an expert to solve every kind of problem in a category of alleged offenses, it makes sense to mention that. Keep a separate page to list out what you are best at. Name the types of problems that you solve. By that we mean name the problems, not just specify the laws that such problems come under. Writing for the lay person, remember? Even for search engines, it becomes easier to index and rank you if you mention the specifics, and your clients will hardly be searching with legal jargon.
3. And what are you about?
This would be the ‘About’ page, quite literally. What is your firm about? What are your governing principles, your history, your current achievements, what illustrious attorneys graced your firm or what promising upstarts? This is about your firm as a separate entity – call it the brand, if you will. This is not about individual lawyers or specializations. You want to present a comprehensive picture here in an effort to generate goodwill. The idea is that any visitor who reads the content here would begin to like what you are all about, feel reassured, and want to know more.
4. What are you about, like, right now?
This is not an extension of the About page. It is one where you put in the updates regarding your activities. You can ask your web designer to put in a blog if you wish, to make it easy for the editors to work without a lot of knowledge about coding. In any case, people like to see that the firm is active and handling important briefs. You might want to hire freelancers to shape your content for you so that it reads like a normal blog post and so that the average person understands what you are trying to convey.
5. How does anyone contact you?
The Contact Us page should have your phone numbers, fax numbers, emails, details about the hours when you are open, the maximum time period in which you typically reply to emails, which emails / phones / faxes ought to be used for specific queries along with the names of contact persons where applicable and, of course, your postal address. Also, and this is a must, there should be an online contact form so that people can send queries to you even without opening their own email boxes. Remember take care to maintain the hours and time periods of your availability and responses.
6. Anything else the client should know of?
Very often, first timers to a law firm are apprehensive. This could be because they are not sure if they can afford your fees, or simply because they are not used to visiting a law firm. Make it easy for them by outlining what exactly happens when they visit you. Are they frisked at gunpoint or do you have one or more friendly receptionists who welcome them and help them out? What documents are they expected to carry during the consultation? Do you expect them to keep their mobile phones switched off or do you realize that they are paying for the time during which they avail of the consultation and it is their choice? The sole purpose of this page is to make sure you don’t lose clients because they were too nervous to approach you and to ensure transparency of your own operations. Okay, those were two sole purposes.
7. And if they still have questions
Finally, a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page being quite popular with most people, you should definitely design one. Keep it populated with queries (and answers) even if some of them have already been resolved elsewhere on your site. This is a feel good factor for your visitors as also an easy reference page for those with very little time to go through your entire website.