BLOG UPDATED 4/6/21 by Doug Betensky.
You may be thinking about how to best market your law firm online in 2021. While driving traffic to your website is an essential activity, getting Users to take an action is equally important if not more important, because in the end of the day you are looking for measurable results.
So, we reframe the question to be: “What are the best ways to increase conversions on law firm websites in 2021?”
First, what is a Conversion? A Conversion is a measurable action you would like a User to take on your website. Common types of conversions include phone calls, form completions, email sign up, and downloads. But a conversion can be clicking on any image, a button or even a link. You define what the conversion action will be. If it can be measured, and it is an action you want Users to take on your website that will get them one step closer to becoming your law firm’s client, it should be trackable. You can track conversions using Google Analytics (or Google Tag Manager) and any professional call tracking service.
Now that we know what a conversion is, let’s explore the top 15 ways you get more conversions on a law firm website. Here they are:
1. Make your firm’s office address and contact information easy to find on all devices.
Although it may seem obvious, you would be surprised how many law firms, including mid to large size firms have contact information that is surprisingly difficult to find, especially on mobile devices.
Make sure your contact information is on an easy to find Contact Us webpage, in your website Footer, in your Header and other strategic areas, such as Location webpages. Make sure on that it is not ‘below the fold’ or hard to find on mobile phones. This is a priority.
2. Build Location pages for multi-office law firms.
If your firm has multiple locations, add a web page for each Location with contact information. Make that page and information easy to find a) on your website b) from a google search. Optimize the content for Google using SEO tactics for law firm websites. Embed your Google map out that page and optimize its content to be relevant to that geographic area. By doing so, your contact information for each location will be much easier to find.
3. Do not forget to optimize your Google Map Listings (GMBs).
If your firm has one or more locations, make sure you have an optimized Google My Business listing (Google Map Listing) so that clients who have searched for your Services will find you on Google Search Engines or even in their Apps. Doing so can help boost conversions because they can call your Office directly from the listing without ever going to your website. And you can measure how many calls you got by using a 3rd party call tracking service. Then, you use your tracking # as the Primary and the actual phone # as the secondary #. This way, your rankings will not be negatively impacted, and you can track calls from your map listing. Yes, Google provides call estimates too, but the numbers cannot be relied upon in our experience (as of 2021).
You can use the Location webpages you have built to be the destination URL for each GMB listing’s web URL section. Getting reviews placed onto your GMB listing will also give that listing more visibility and help prospects build trust early, which can increase how many calls you get.
Also, many law firms get business through referrals however to be found for your brand name, you must make sure your GMB is listed in the three pack (top three positions) of the search results. Especially in the case where a competitor is running Ads, bidding on your name (this does happen!), a GMB listing can help you get clicks first.
4. Make it easy to Convert on mobile devices.
First, look at your Google Analytics. Do you have a high percentage of mobile users visiting your website? If you do, you can validate thinking about your website mobile-first. See if your website has gotten mobile user conversions and at what rate. Is it lower than desktop conversions? If it is, you may need to make your website easier to convert on mobile devices.
First, make your website easy to navigate on all Devices. Then, help visitors convert on mobile devices by making it easy for them to find your phone # and call, easy to fill out all forms, easy to find important emails and contact information etc. Look at the Mobile User Experience a visitor will have and make design updates with that in mind.
Also think through how you can internally link to other related pages. Mobile Users can navigate through content without the main menu by clicking on internal links from one page to another that you insert. This can make it easier on mobile Users to find exactly what they are looking for!
5. Create a clear Call to Action statement.
Make your call to action statement prominent, clear and convincing e.g. Schedule an Appointment, Book an Appointment, Learn More, Download Now etc. Do not use a passive voice or sentence structure. Focus on Actionable language.
Bring attention to your call to actions via styling, font color, buttons, directional cues (like arrows) or other formatting techniques such as creating a sidebar form on a desktop site or a wide contact block on full width websites that User must see as they scroll down your website.
As a law firm, ask yourself, “What can you do when you don’t want to offer a Free Consultation?” Plan out what you can offer if you do not provide free consultations. Many established law firms do not. In these cases, you can still say “Schedule A Consultation” “Book a Consultation” etc. The word FREE does not always mean you will get more conversions. You could have webpage explaining what you go over in the Consultation to substantiate the value and cost. That alone can help you improve your conversions if you charge for meetings. In other cases, you can also use language such as “Contact Us” or “Sign up for our Newsletter” or “Get A Detailed Case Evaluation” etc. Be creative.
Your website copy in general is also extremely important. Your copy must be able to inform, educate, and solve the visitor’s most pressing problem. If it is professionally written, you will create a much better impression and increase your chances of getting an inquiry!
6. Consider the benefits of Pop-Up & Exit Intent Pop Ups.
Both can help if used properly. Pop up forms are forms that ‘pop up’ as a User navigates through your website. They are triggered to show up based on criteria you set in the plugin/widget! An Exit Intent pop up appears when a User leaves your website. It is triggered when a User’s mouse cursor moves into the browser area above your website. You can control the logic of when they appear and when they do not as well as on what pages they appear.
Both options can display text + images and call to action buttons asking, for example, for you to “Contact Us” or “Read Reviews” or “sign Up” etc. The conversion actions are set by you!
Note: These pop ups should be used with caution and thoughtfulness. Do not use them to simply interrupt a User the first second they get to your website unless you have an emergency message to display. Let them show up once the User has shown engagement on your website, and make sure they provide value to the User. Otherwise, they may have the opposite affect and damage website performance.
7. Set up Remarketing Ads on Google & Facebook.
8. Look in Google Analytics for the Top Exit Pages (and make them more engaging).
If people are leaving your website from important pages like your Homepage or a practice area page, or if those pages have high Bounce Rates, ask yourself, “is this a page where I expected a User to take an action to engage with my website or did I expect them to leave the site from this page?” If the answer is that you expected them to stay but they left, you may need to redesign, restructure or rewrite this page. Improve your highest Exit Pages, unless they are meant to be an exit page e.g. a Thank You page is a typical exit page! Or a Contact Us page! When you keep Users on your site, you improve your opportunity for Conversions!
9. Create Soft Conversions too.
Not every website visitor is ready to fill out a form or call you on a first visit. They might like some more content to read first. This is one of the reasons we advocate remarketing. However, you can also ask Users to take an action that is a little less direct than filling in a contact form e.g. download an eBook, view an infographic or other actions that can engage them further with your practice, like reading a related blog or watching a video or joining your email list.
Remember, the prospect may have future intent to hire you but are currently in a fact finding, information collection stage in the cycle. So, deliver content that meets their needs at the point in the sales cycles they are at right now. Some people refer to this type of content as ‘top of the funnel’ since the User is more of a “cold” lead.
10. Be careful how and when you use Gated Content.
First, what is Gated content? A good example of gated content is when you require a User to fill out a form to gain access to a particular section of content within your website. Gated content is normally used as a lead generation tool to help attorneys gather useful data about their potential clients.
Many conversions are impeded by the fact that some organizations feel the need to ask for contact information before a User can consume your content; this will drive many people right off your website. You may be forcing them to do something they are not ready to do! You must give to get, so you might plan to offer free content too. If you do offer gated content, have a plan for what you are going to do with the contact information you receive first, or you may find you have no practical use for it.
By the same token, be careful not to make your contact forms too long or complicated. While every law firm wants to prequalify leads, you also do not want to make it difficult to get the Conversion, so only ask for what you really need. Some firms only want phone calls, so you can gear your strategy toward call generation too.
11. Research Live Chat options.
Many Users enjoy communicating through live chat on their website because it saves time, and it is personable. Live chat has a 92% satisfaction rate among many people over email or phone or email (Acquire). One advantage of adding live chat technology to your website is that you can instantly connect with a visitor. As a result, they are more likely to schedule an appointment with you. The User can get immediate help to answer questions.
Many Chat services offer analytics so that you can measure chat conversions too. Analytics may be available in the Chat company’s dashboard they have set up for you, or often you can set up conversion tracking in Google Analytics. There are some Chat services in the law industry that also provide trained customer service reps who will educate themselves about your specific firm so that they can act on your behalf in a professional manner to help prospects. Many will also try to connect that User to you directly via Chat as an option if the User is ready to talk to attorney. These chat services tend to charge a monthly or annual fee. Others charge by the Lead, an interesting model.
12. Embedding Videos into your website can also help conversions.
If a picture says a thousand words then a video can say so much more. Video is engaging and gets the User to listen to your message with minimal work on their part. You can communicate a lot of information in a short time. Videos can make your firm more memorable.
Videos can also be used to answer questions or explain how your firm operates and is unique. Put something online that is quality, and you can leverage video to your advantage. Even just putting client testimonial videos on your site can help create more social proof about the quality of service your firm provides.
In fact, Consumers are watching more videos than in previous years. In 2021, consumers will spend a total of 100 minutes daily watching videos online (Smart Insights). In addition, businesses plan to implement more videos in their marketing campaigns. As you can see, this is an important step to increasing conversions on your website and social media sites.
13. Use visuals that add to your credibility such as icons and images of awards, recognitions, licensing, and organizational memberships, for example.
Post images of major publications in which the law firm has been published. Use visuals to boost your image in an authentic way. Use awards and recognitions near conversion areas of your site as a psychological tool to demonstrate credibility and trust to Users.
Most firms can get free badges or icons from directories or organizations of which they are members or whom they advertise through.
Also, most law firm directories also offer their own advertising, and your firm can potentially get conversions by advertising on these websites. The websites use your ad dollars to improve your visibility when Users search their websites for attorneys.
14. Test new design and messaging ideas.
Even if you cannot do sophisticated A/B testing, for example, if you run Google Ads for your firm, you can build two landing pages, each with a slight variation on messaging or design. Run your ads, analyze results, and determine which variable is impacting results. Go with that design. Testing is part of improving conversion. Never become complacent.
Testing is not limited to Advertising or Landing Pages. Test different call to action messaging on your homepage, on Practice area pages and across the site. You can assess success by looking at the conversion rate of your website over time, or total conversions or other metrics you set up.
15. Make sure your website loads as quickly as possible.
Making sure your website is user-friendly and has a fast load time can help increase conversions – this cannot be stressed enough. Faster websites tend to have lower Bounce Rates which means more engagement. Faster sites correlate with fewer people leaving your site without taking an action. If your site fails to load in a timely manner, your visitors will abandon your website and never return. You may also lose the SEO advantage (however slight) of a faster website. As a result, they will explore Google search and go to a competing law firm that has a faster load time. Your true loss is not SEO; it is a lost potential Client.
There are web development professionals who focus on speeding up websites. Start with your website Developer to analyze what you need to improve. Many times a Server side update plus image compression alone can shave off 3-5 seconds. And, there are many other strategies. Then you can find out what is cost effective and feasible to improve based on your website’s exact set up. For example, having a lot of plugins (WordPress site) can slow your site down. Remove unused plugins. In some cases code your own, if it is cost effective to make more lightweight scripts.
Beyond speeding up your website itself, you may also look into Caching plugins and even CDN networks.
Gtmetrix and Google Analytics as well as Pingdom are commonly used to assess Page Speed.
Here are a few important things to remember…
Is your website aesthetically pleasing? Does your site show attorney Bios with professional headshots, descriptions and branding? If your website design has not been updated in the past 2-5 years, it may be time to consider getting a new look. Clients will judge you by their impression of your website. They will also judge your site’s functionality and ease of use. This will impact whether or not they contact you.
Building an email list may also be helpful to improving conversions. Most often law firms use their list to send out Newsletters or important legal updates. You can train Clients to receive important reminders e.g. Updating Your Will etc. that could lead to more conversions over time. When you have a robust email marketing campaign, you are more likely to increase conversions. Having a targeted email list (e.g. Clients who have created a will but have not updated the will in 3+ years) is also an excellent way to get repeat business. Remember to plan ahead, and do not send emails too often or Clients will begin to ignore them. Only send emails to people who have opted in. After all, law firm sites should follow the law too!
Well, there you have it, the 15 best ways to increase conversions on law firm websites in 2021 and beyond. Obviously, you do not have to implement every single tip given above at once. However, give some a try and see how much better you can make your site perform!
Improve Your Website Conversions and Boost Your ROI!
Do you need help with getting more conversions on your law firm website? We can help you if you have questions. There is no better time than now to improve your website. Contact us today! Call (516) 610-0922 or click here to contact us online.