Creating Website Content for Law Firms
Creating content for a law firm website may seem overwhelming. Many attorneys don’t even know where to start. But high-quality website content is something every law firm must achieve to compete against their competition.
How do you create content that is both interesting and informative to your potential clients?
In this article, we will discuss the importance of creating website content for law firms. Then we’ll give some tips on how a law firm should approach their online presence. Finally, we’ll show you what kind of website content you should be sharing with your audience.
1. Make Sure Your Content Is Interesting! (What Makes You Unique)
When you create content for your website, it needs to be interesting. You can’t use dull bullet point after dull bullet point without saying anything of substance.
Instead, you need original and unique content that will make people want to be a part of your website.
How do you find something unique about your law firm that will make people want to read more?
One answer is to think backwards. Don’t just ask, “What do I have for content?” Instead ask, “What can my clients use?”
Start by researching the needs and wants of your clients. This will give you a sense of what your clients are looking for when they find your website. For example, if you’re a bankruptcy attorney in the New York City area, then chances are that potential clients want to know where to file for bankruptcy in NYC. Maybe there’s an easy solution: create a list of necessary documents or an interactive map with directions to the nearest courthouse.
There are many different ways you can use this formula of research-to-content for your law firm. You just have to think a little outside the box and cater to your client’s needs.
If you’re still having trouble thinking of ideas for unique content, search Google for “how to [enter topic here]” and you’ll instantly be flooded with ideas.
Once you start thinking about what your clients need, then it will be much easier to come up with new and exciting content for your website.
2. Know Your Audience And Use The Right Tone
Your content goes in one ear and out the other if the reader can’t relate to it.
When you know your audience, then you’ll be able to say what is relevant and useful for them.
For example, if the people in your ideal client profile like certain television shows or celebrities, then this information will help you create better content for them. Maybe they want a whole list of TV shows just like yours.
Knowing what your audience enjoys is a great way to create content that will make them want to learn more about you .
But tone of voice should also be taken into consideration when creating content for your website. If you’re using the authoritative voice, then don’t use informal words like “we” or “you.” Use an objective tone.
When you’re talking about yourself in the third person, it looks unprofessional. Stick to “you” and “we.” This will help keep your tone professional and formal , which is what clients look for when they’re researching lawyers online .
It’s also okay if you mix up informal words like:
- “I know” can be changed to “it is commonly known that”
- “We had a great time” can be changed to “our client enjoyed our services”
- “You’re welcome” can be changed to “thank you for your kind words,” or some other form of formal closing.
Tone should also match the seriousness of what you’re trying to say.
For example, if you’re talking about the risks of something going wrong with a legal procedure, then using light-hearted words will seem inappropriate. Think about how your reader would feel in that situation and use tone appropriately.
All these tips apply to creating content for your website , especially when it comes to writing your business’ content.
When you know your audience and use the right tone, then there’s a greater chance that clients will want to learn more about your law firm.
3. What Is Your Message? (And Why Should Clients Care?)
Your message is what you are trying to say with your content.
For your message to be clear, it’s important that you understand who your ideal client is and what they will gain from using your services.
If you’re struggling with this idea, then go back to tip #1 where I talk about finding the needs of clients on your website. Tell them things they don’t know. Help them understand the complex world of law.
If you can do this, then there will be less questions in your client’s mind and they will have a clearer understanding of what you are all about as a firm . Your message should convey these ideas to clients:
- You know their problems, and you’re the right person to solve them.- You can help your clients solve their problems
- You are a great lawyer and you know the law well
If these points aren’t clear on your website, then it’s time to start brainstorming for ideas again.
For example, if you’re trying to convey that you are the best lawyer in town and you will win any case put in front of you, then it’s important that you convey this to clients in your website.
It’s also okay if the message is very simple: “Contact us today!” You may not have much time for the greatest and obscure legal content on the internet , so keep your message short and clear.
Your main goal should be to communicate your message in the best possible way to clients .
4. How Will You Create Compelling Content?
It’s an internet fact: People don’t read online anymore, they tend to skim. But that doesn’t mean you should sacrifice quality for quantity and just write anything you can think of!
Online content is made up of two things:
Text Pictures and videos
Just because you’re trying to create content that people want to read, understand, or watch doesn’t mean that it’s okay for everyone else on the internet. Even if you are trying your best to do something unique, you need a plan in place before you go live with your website.
People find it boring when they read the same thing over and over again about a topic, so don’t do that.
Make sure you’re not relying too much on stock images. There are many free images online that will give off a bland and unprofessional feeling to your website. If you need visuals for your articles, then hire a professional.
Find bloggers who are writing about the same things you want to write about. Do your research on them (by reading their content) to see what they say about their topics, and then make sure that the points/ideas you want to convey aren’t already out there in the world somewhere else. Take one idea that you like and make it your own. Read more about online content creation, to learn how to adapt and improve on ideas from other writers.
5. How Long Should Your Content Be?
There is no definitive answer for this question, since it depends on what kind of content you are creating. Some firms may want to write long-form articles, while others might not be able to afford the time for that. Other times, you may find yourself needing to create something of a very short length (such as an FAQs page)
For law firm websites, it’s all about quality over quantity. Make sure your content is interesting for users (see tip #1) and also make sure that you are conveying your message in a way that will benefit clients . The longer the user stays on your website, the better!
For long-form articles, aim for at least 1,000 words with a goal of 2,500 words. Stay away from writing too much, because you will have a difficult time trying to convey your message without boring people.
For short-form articles, aim for at least 300 words (for keyword-rich sentences) with a goal of 500 words. I would say that this is a good length for FAQs pages, contact pages, and other content that doesn’t relate to legal issues.
The best length for blog posts is hard to say, since this depends on the topic you’re writing about. A blog post about a law firm’s effective techniques in opening new offices would require more words than a blog post about the top 10 tips that every lawyer should know when drafting a legally binding contract. But the goal is to write as little as you can get away with while still conveying your message and keeping people engaged.
6. How Will You Get People to Read Your Content?
It’s often said that “the cream rises to the top.” But in this case, it’s the cream that sinks to the bottom. With so much content on the internet , how will people find your website ?
The best way to do this is by finding ways to get new visitors. One of the most common ways for law firms to get new visitors is through SEO optimization (Search Engine Optimization). This means giving your website a “Google-friendly” structure so that search engines will like it and rank it high on their lists.
The second best way for law firms to get new visitors is through content that attracts people’s attention. One example of this is by using interactive media. Other examples can include infographics, videos, or podcasts (which are like audio-visual versions of articles).
Your content is only as good as the amount of attention it gets on the internet. If your firm doesn’t have enough money to invest in SEO optimization for your website (or if you think that your target clients are not interested in SEO), then you need to create visual content that gets people’s attention. You’ll have a better chance at doing so by integrating multimedia into your website, such as podcasts or videos .
For other law firms, it’s all about ranking high in search engines like Google, Bing, or Yahoo. To do this, you need to create content that those search engines will like. Search engine optimization (SEO) is also important because people are more likely to click through links that appear in the first few pages of Google, Bing , and Yahoo searches.
7. How Will You Measure Your Content?
I learned this from a professor in college. Whenever you are working on something, whether it’s a group project or a research paper , you need to know not only how your work is turning out (are the details correct? does it flow well?) but also how your work compares with that of others (is this better than what they did? why?).
For example, if you are creating a new website, how will you know whether your content is effective or not? You can’t just go off of the number of visitors or the amount of money that people bring into your office. What you need to do instead is create metrics for your content .
This means recording statistics about what’s working and what’s not. For example, you could record the number of comments that people leave on blog posts, the average length of time visitors spend on your website, or even how people are sharing your content online.
To do this, create content for every page of your website. But before doing so, establish a baseline: what kind of numbers did you get before you started publishing content? Record those numbers. Then, after a certain amount of time (say, a month) has passed, record the new numbers.
If the number of visitors to your website has gone up since you created content for that page, then this is a positive result. If it hasn’t, then perhaps the content you’re creating isn’t attracting people’s attention. If that is the case, change what you’re doing in order to get better results.
8. What Is Your Goal?
What do you want your law firm website to accomplish? Do you want it to bring people into your office for consultations? Or do you want it to get people to refer clients and business opportunities to your firm?
Whatever your law firm website accomplishes, you have to take actionable steps in order for these goals to happen. If a goal is continuously being missed, then re-evaluate your strategy. You may need more content or better descriptions about your services in order to accomplish your goal. The key is identifying what you are doing right and wrong towards the accomplishment of your stated goals .
9. Is Your Content Valuable for Your Audience?
Your content should be helping your target audience. If they find themselves learning something new while reading your law firm website, then it’s valuable. If not, then you need to keep working on creating better content.
How can you tell if someone is learning something? You could ask them by sending surveys after they visit your website. You could also ask them if they’re interested in learning more about your law firm based upon what they’ve read on your website.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to people who have visited your site. Whether you do this through email, snail mail, or phone calls, it’s important that you connect with them. If your content was helpful, ask them what they liked about it and what you could do better in the future. This is how you’ll continue to improve your website’s content .
10. How Are You Addressing Your Audience’s Needs on a Large Scale?
What does this mean? It means you must take the time to understand your audience. What do they need? What kind of information are they looking for?
One of the best ways to answer these questions is through surveys. A lot of people aren’t willing to spend time filling out a 10-page survey, but almost everyone will fill it out if it only takes a few minutes. You could even use email autoresponders to send a survey to your subscribers and then track the results.
Another way is through social media. If you create valuable content on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, or any other platform, people will be interested in what you’re doing. That’s why it’s important to keep a consistent presence on social media. When you write blog posts, it’s helpful to share them across your social media networks. When you talk about something on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Pinterest, make sure that all of your followers know about it as well.
11. Does Your Content Reach Your Target Audience?
If your target audience is clients in need of a practice area from your law firm, then they must be able to find your law firm website through Google. Here’s how:
Create detailed title tags. In the past, I’ve written about the importance of SEO (search engine optimization) and title tags . But for a quick refresher: make it extremely easy for Google to know what your law firm website is about. If you specialize in family law, then I would include the words “family” and “law” in the title tag of your website. If you have a blog that talks about divorce cases, then I’d use these same keywords.
Creating long-tail keyword phrases can also help you achieve higher search rankings. Long-tail keywords are phrases that contain at least three words about a particular subject. If your website is about divorce cases, then “divorce” and “lawyer” would be two long-tail keywords you could include in the title tag of your web page or blog post .
Use descriptive meta descriptions. A lot of people read an article or blog post and don’t ever click on a link to visit the website. So that means these people will never see your homepage. However, if they do click through, then you have the opportunity to wow them with your homepage. But how can you get someone interested without showing everything on your homepage?
If you’re reading this article, the answer is by using a compelling meta description. If your law firm website discusses divorce cases, then a good meta description might be: “Divorce lawyer Michael Bradley explains common misconceptions about divorce.” It’s simple and to the point. It tells readers what they can expect if they click through.
Make your LinkedIn profile professional and relevant. Most professionals have a LinkedIn profile, and for good reason: it’s one of the best ways to showcase your talents and abilities to employers around the world.
Once you’re signed up, make sure that your profile is as professional as possible. If you’re an attorney, then don’t include a picture that includes you with your buddies at a wedding. If you’re an attorney and have kids, then make sure that it’s completely professional (no pictures of your recent vacation with your family).
Also, only include relevant information on your LinkedIn profile:
- Did you write a book? Include a link to Amazon where people can purchase it.
- Are you an avid cyclist? List a few of your local bike clubs.
- Do you know somebody who knows somebody at a company that might be interested in hiring you? Include their contact information on your profile.
The point is, give people as many reasons as possible to reach out to you!
12. Have You Influenced Your Prospects?
If you’re serious about growing your law firm website traffic, then you need to start building relationships with people who can help you accomplish this goal. Start by reaching out to colleagues and friends. Ask them to share their favorite websites on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and any other social network they use. Ask your lawyer friends if they can introduce you to a few of their favorite clients. The more people that know about your website, the more eyes that will see it every day.
13. Have You Built Up Your Email List?
There’s no better way to build up your law firm website traffic than by focusing on email marketing. We all get dozens of emails every day, and we can only do so much (read: nothing) to improve the performance of an email. However, you can do a lot to address this issue by focusing on your niche market and creating compelling content.
You should start by contacting bloggers in your industry. If you specialize in divorce cases then contact bloggers who write articles about divorce cases. If you have a blog about divorce then do the same thing. If your law firm website discusses family law then contact bloggers who focus on that niche.
A lot of lawyers are afraid to send mass emails to strangers, but this is one way that can really pay off. Most bloggers and small business owners are just as eager to share their content with others, and if you’ve given them a good reason then they’ll definitely help you.
14. Who Are Your Competitors?
Analyzing your competitors can be very time consuming, but it’s one of the most effective ways to take your law firm website traffic to new heights. Consider a few questions about your competitors:
- What is their approach to generating traffic?
- Do they focus on driving visitors to the homepage, or do they have an entire strategy that focuses on leveraging specific pages for maximum efficiency?
- What type of content do they focus on posting?
- Are their blog posts relevant to the industry, and if so then how often do they post?
- Are their blog posts optimized for a search engine or are they more about the user experience?
You can answer these questions, and many more, by using Google Analytics. You should start by looking at your competitors’ traffic sources. By doing this you can see where people are finding them online (offers, SEO, social media, etc.). Then look at what keywords are bringing traffic to their website. Study these closely so that you can come up with a strategy for optimizing your own page and attracting more visitors.
15. Who Is Your Competition?
The best way to build up your law firm website traffic is to find a specific type of visitor and learn how they interact with your competitors. What are the features that make their page so appealing? Why do visitors return again and again? If you can answer these questions then you’ll be able to target a similar audience for your own page.
For example, if you notice that your competitors’ pages are getting a lot of search engine traffic then focus on improving your search engine optimization . Try to rank for keywords that make sense with your page.
16. Do You Have An Infographic?
Infographics have become one of the most popular ways to share information quickly and efficiently. According to Infographic Researches, the average reader has a 10.9% retention rate when reading text information but an 80.9% retention rate when they’re reading infographics . They also have 44.3 times more traffic than text based content!
You should definitely create an infographic that has many benefits for your law firm website:
- It will be shared on social media and spread quickly across the web;
- It can act as a visual complement to your blog posts or other types of content;
- It’s more likely to be read by search engines because it contains relevant keywords;
- It can be used on your homepage, blog posts or even affiliate marketing pages;
- It can be used as part of an email promotion (read this for more ideas);
- It’s relatively easy to create and you don’t need any technical skills;
- You will get free traffic from Google and other search engines because they will display your infographic in their listings
One of the biggest mistakes that people make with infographics is focusing on appearance rather than information. The end result should be something that’s visually appealing and easy to read, but it’s more important to have relevant content that provides information quickly.
17. Are You Optimized for Mobile Devices?
The number of mobile device users is growing exponentially. According to research by Pew Internet, more than half (65%) of U.S. adults go online using a mobile phone and 84% of Americans have a smartphone only!
That means that over half of your law firm website traffic will be coming from a mobile device.
The best way to figure out how many visitors you’re getting on mobile devices is by creating an estimated split. This should show you what percentage of your keyword searches, social media shares and other online activity comes from mobile users. You can then leverage this information and create a better mobile experience.
You should also check to see if your law firm website is optimized for mobile devices. If not, then you need to start thinking about what needs to be done. For example, are text links still being used? Are you using relevant keywords in descriptions and titles of images and videos? Is your font size too small? Make sure to check your Google search console for issues with Mobile, such as text is to small, elements being to close together. Then fix and validate them.
18. What Is The Purpose of Your Blog Posts?
You’re probably already blogging on your law firm website but are you really getting the results that you want? Or are your blog posts kind of like a never ending diary where you write about anything that comes into your head at any given time?
One of the biggest problems that many law firm websites face is not being focused. If you don’t have a clear vision and purpose for your blog then you can quickly lose focus. Before you write another word, ask yourself these questions:
- What are my goals?
- What audience am I targeting?
- What are my topics?
- How often will I post?
- Where will I get information for each post?
- How much time do I have to spend on it?
Once you know the answers to these questions, then you can start creating a plan of action. You should also start to focus on how you will measure the success of your blog posts. Measuring your blog results will make it easier for you to track and change them if needed. For example:
- Do more people click through from your social media pages?
- Are they linking back to relevant content on your website?
- Do they keep returning to your blog over and over again?
- Do they sign up for your email list?
One of the most common reasons that law firms fail at blogging is because there aren’t enough real readers. Don’t just write to “share” information.
Ask yourself this question: if you were looking for information online, what search strings would you use? If you can find others searching for your topics then there’s a pretty good chance that it will be of interest to your target audience. Asking yourself this question will also help eliminate any potential “me” words in your writing such as: I, my, we, etc.
Another tip is to take advantage of Google Analytics. It’s a free tool that will show you where your readers are coming from, what kind of devices they’re using and how long they spend on each page. This will help improve the quality of your blog posts with new, relevant information while cutting down on redundant content. The other tool which is free from Google that can help you narrow down some keywords is Google Trends, it will give you volume information on those keywords you are aiming for.
19. How Do You Use Social Media?
Social media is your new secret weapon for generating new leads. But how much time are you really spending on each social network?
We all know that using Instagram, Pinterest and Facebook can be beneficial to law firm web design because they drive traffic back to your website . However, there’s no such thing as a free lunch when it comes to social media. You can’t just throw up a few posts and expect the traffic to come flooding in. You have to take some time to learn how they work so you can use them correctly.
My advice? Start slow, become familiar with one social media site at a time then move onto the next. That way your time won’t be wasted on sites that you don’t have time for. You can also use social media scheduling tools to help make the site management process easier.
If you’re not sure where to begin, try these three:
- LinkedIn: This is a great place to connect with other professionals and let them know what type of work your firm does or that you’re hiring.
- Twitter: Post interesting links to stories and articles related to your area of specialty along with tips or predictions about the upcoming changes in laws or cases that could impact your clients. Be sure to post your insights at least 3 times a week and respond to others on Twitter that mention you.
- Instagram: This is the place to share interesting images of your office or fun photos from events your firm has attended. You can also use this site to post pictures and videos of new products that you’ve added to your office, website, blog etc.
By following these three simple steps and creating a strategy before you start, the benefits will be significant and the time invested will pay off.
20. How Do You Create a Compelling Blog Post?
Compelling is a keyword for law firm web design that no one wants to be without. The Internet seems to have an infinite amount of content but it doesn’t take long for your audience to get bored with what you’re saying or selling.
Start by asking yourself these questions:
- What is my topic?
- What is the purpose of my post? (blog, advice, updates etc.)
- What do I want to achieve with this piece of content? (add value, increase brand credibility)
Now that you know what your subject is and why you’re writing this blog post, start crafting.
The first thing we need to do is pick a headline. When people see the title the should already be interested enough to click on it. That means it shouldn’t be anything too broad or vague like “Top Tips for Law Firm Marketing.” It needs to be a little more specific and catchy.
Now that you have your title in place it’s time to create the rest of your post. First start by writing down any thoughts or ideas that have been rattling around in your head. Write as much as you can and then take a break for about 30 minutes. This will help you get your mind off of it so you can come back with new ideas. When you return to your post, re-read what has been written so far and try to condense it down into 3 main points that will be the foundation for this blog post.
23. What is the Most Important Part of an Effective Law Firm Website?
The underlying foundation that all great law firm websites need to have is a logo. A logo will make every other element of your website more effective because it’s the first thing people look at when they land on your site. It also tells them who you are and what you represent.
A good logo is simple yet memorable. It should be something that makes your potential clients stop and look twice. These are the things that make a great law firm web design strategy.
24. How to Write a Case Study for Your Law Firm Website
If you’ve ever watched any advertisements on television or read an advertisement in a magazine or heard it on the radio, chances are you’ve been exposed to some sort of case study. These are also referred to as testimonials and they all have one thing in common: they use an “actual” client or customer that is willing to share their experience with a certain product or service.
Some reason these work so well is because they let the consumer know that other people have used this product or service with success. It gives them a better idea of what to expect when they make their purchase, apply for a loan etc.
A great way to set yourself apart from your competitors is to include an actual case study on your site involving at least one of your clients. More than likely, your clients will be more than willing to give you a testimonial so use this to your advantage and set yourself apart from the rest of the pack.
25. How Can You Keep Visitors on Your Law Firm Website Longer?
It’s true that it takes time for people to develop trust but for the most part people do not take the time to get comfortable with a site. They will usually only stay on your website long enough to figure out what it is you’re selling or offering and then they leave.
26. What Are Some Tips to Create An Effective Law Firm Website?
If you already have a website up and running but it isn’t generating the kind of leads you’d like, consider these tips to revamp your site.
Everything on your website should be with the purpose of bringing people closer to making a purchase or calling you. If it doesn’t add value in some way or keep them engaged then consider removing it.
Always have at least 3 calls to action somewhere on your website. This could include links for things like, asking visitors to contact you by filling out a form or contacting you via email.
Focus on content that is original and engaging. You need something for visitors to read, view, hear. If your website has nothing but a generic home page with little to no other pages, then how can you expect them to stick around long enough?
Technical aspects should be a goal; is there:
- A table of contents?
- Do your images have alt tags?
- Are you using the proper markup for headings?
- Are you linking out properly with nofollow and dofollow?
- If you are using WordPress did you include a relevant featured image? (Used when post is shared on social network.)
27. How Important is a Blog on your Law Firm Website?
A blog can be a very powerful tool for your law firm’s website. You will have the ability to post any time you want and keep people interested in what is going on. You are also able to display more personality through your posts.
While blogging may not be essential for every business site, most of today’s successful web sites have a blog. This is especially true when it comes to a law firm and the practice areas do not matter. Even if your a lawyer for other lawyers.
28. What Is the Purpose of Social Bookmarking?
Social bookmarking is a way to connect your website with other people’s websites through social networking, namely: Digg, StumbleUpon, Reddit etc . It allows you to create links that will provide traffic back to your site and will help with SEO.
Overview: Creating content is part art, part science, and part experience. It’s something every law firm should work at because it brings in volume, interest and is a better way to cover niche’ targets. Many law firms under estimate the use of a blog, either because they would rather pay for keywords through a PPC campaign or they just don’t see the benefit. For return on investment, an organic hit of 47K in visitors over a month on a topic central to your legal practice is very valuable, indeed.