Most attorney websites are pretty formulaic. But we’re seeing a rise in several new features that we hope are here to stay. If your firm doesn’t have any of them, you might be due for an update.
It’s important for an attorney website to include the standard required features. You should have a home page that explains your expertise, practice area pages, attorney profiles, a contact page, and a blog. Beyond the basics, there’s a lot of room for innovation—and vanguard firms tend to attract more business.
From multimedia content to cutting edge chat tools, here are six features for lawyer websites that we hope continue to gain traction.
1. Improved career sections
Even if your firm is not currently hiring, it’s still worth building out the Career section of your website. After all, your website is not only putting your firm forward to future clients but also to future candidates.
Your website is the perfect place to showcase your firm’s culture—which can be a critical differentiator in this hyper competitive market for talent.
Go beyond the bare minimum list of openings and job descriptions on your Career page. Instead, share videos from employees. Dynamically explain your core values and how your team implements them in your work together. Highlight the perks of working at your firm, such as mentorship opportunities and unique benefits.
2. Personalization of attorney profiles
In addition to consistent attorney profile updates, it’s important to flesh out the profile beyond a resume and headshot.
Humanizing your attorneys on the profile page can help ease the apprehension that a prospective client may feel about approaching you for legal services.
Get creative. Upload audio clips in the attorney’s own voice that demonstrate how to pronounce their name. Include a video of the attorney explaining why they chose this career path. Swap out the photos for friendly GIFs or even watercolor paintings. If done correctly, attorney profiles can achieve the perfect balance between approachability and gravitas that will both reassure and impress your clients.
3. High-engagement content
Your website needs to stand out from the crowd to get people to engage with your content. High-engagement content is a growing trend that we support 100%—and you don’t even have to spend thousands on fancy animations or graphics.
High-engagement content helps you deliver valuable information while breaking the mold of traditional legal marketing copy.
Instead of a traditional blog post layout, try something a bit more engaging. Use an infographic. Place photos and text so they lead the eye in a zig zag shape across the screen, rather than straight down the page. Go beyond the inclusive stock photo and feature vibrant colors and stories that captivate your audience. Embed a video or a web form to keep them clicking.
Check out these two examples from our clients:
Surprenant & Beneski, PC: Talking to Your Parents About An Estate Plan
Lipsky Lowe: What Is a Hostile Work Environment?
We’re glad to see the growing interest among lawyers in creating accessible websites. Accessibility overlay tools are becoming more popular as attorneys realize how many of their potential clients may be living with a disability.
Accessibility is neither a feature nor a compliance tactic—it’s a foundational design concept.
To build a truly accessible website, it must be built from the ground up while considering the needs of all users. Assistive technologies don’t work well with afterthought add-ons. Although the ADA does not currently have any guidelines with regard to websites, that’s likely to change soon.
Law firm website accessibility remediation is an option for firms whose websites aren’t fully accessible, but it’s always better to start from scratch if possible.
5. Having fun with imagery and fonts
This isn’t new but we’re definitely seeing more of it! While you do need to stay within the bounds of professionalism, it’s possible to use your brand to stand out in a good way.
Consider a website style that will stand out from the crowd and evoke an emotional response from visitors.
You don’t have to stick with safe legal imagery and the standard hero image of fierce-looking attorneys with their arms crossed. These images may fit expectations for what a lawyer website is supposed to look like, but they may not resonate with your visitors and they certainly aren’t memorable.
Within your brand story, look for ways to increase the emotional resonance and stand out with unique visuals.
Here are three examples of sites we love:
Capuano IP, an intellectual property firm
Cohen Family Law, a Phoenix family law practice
Gueronniere P.A., a boutique law firm with offices in Wellington, Florida
6. Evolving chat functionality
Goodbye chatbots, hello next-gen chats! Gone are the days of buggy chatbot tools that don’t actually work.
The future of customer service for law firm websites is improved chat functionality.
A handful of chat providers now allow video messaging to engage visitors. J&Y Law’s website offers a good example of how to incorporate videos into the chat function. Studies show that a good live chat feature increases conversions.
Whether you invest in an AI chatbot or some other system, now is a good time to think about upgrading your website’s chat functionality.
Review and next steps
You don’t have to incorporate every new feature into your website. But you do need to keep an eye on trends to ensure that your competitors aren’t providing a better online experience.
Here are the six best new features we’re seeing on law firm websites:
- Robust Career sections
- High personalization of attorney profiles
- High-engagement content
- Creative imagery and fonts
- Improved chat functionality
If you already have a website, try adding one of these features to propel your practice. If you need a website and don’t know where to start, we can help you create a website that will grow alongside your business.