Are You Too Focused On Law Firm Website Design?
A good law firm website design — one that balances aesthetics and usability — is important.
Too often, attorneys focus solely the aesthetic aspects of website design.
An attorney may think that the most effective law firm websites contain lots of bells and whistles, and that an elaborate website design is what appeals to potential clients.
But when it comes to law firm website design, there can be a misalignment between what appeals to you and what appeals to a potential client. Potential clients who visit your law firm’s website often have a very different mindset and very different needs than an average web visitor who visits a non-law firm website.
The misalignment of what you think you want your website to look like — and what potential clients need from your site — can keep potential clients from contacting you.
To succeed online, attorneys must look logically at the reasons why their web presence may not be driving potential clients to contact the firm. There can be many reasons why your website isn’t helping you build your business. Fancy, flashy designs can be one of those reasons.
Why focusing too much on law firm website design can hurt your business
There’s no doubt that good website design can contribute to a positive experience for potential clients when they visit your site.
But there’s often a difference between flashy and functional. And that can mean the difference between a potential client contacting your firm or leaving your website.
An aesthetically pleasing and usable site, combined with a solid content plan, helps potential clients find and digest the information they need in an optimal way. It helps them confirm to themselves that visiting your website — and contacting you — is the right choice.
But design alone will not move the needle for your firm, especially when it’s a design that doesn’t put your web visitors first. You may want something flashy. But your potential clients need a focused, functional website that assuages their fears about their current situation.
The trouble with bells and whistles
We sometimes see attorneys who want to add all the bells and whistles to their sites because those things look “neat” or a competitor has those features on their website. They want auto-play videos, unique navigation, wild colors and lots of moving parts.
Those bells and whistles can interfere with your potential clients’ ability to learn more about their case or problem. A flashy design can stir up an unfavorable emotional reaction in your web visitors. And if your site is doing that, you’ve likely created a distraction that detracts from your online marketing success.
Have you thought about how potential clients see your law firm’s website?
Think about the position that many of your potential clients come from.
They may be worried or embarrassed about their situation. They likely have questions about what to do next. They may be concerned about choosing the right attorney. They may be unsure if they need an attorney or they might be unhappy about needing to seek counsel in the first place.
And the last thing they want to do is deal with a website that’s too hard to use or that isn’t client-centric.
Your potential clients are rarely interested in fancy or flashy web designs. What they want is navigation that’s intuitive and makes sense. They’re interested in solving their problem. They want a site that’s easy to read and learn from. They want to know that contacting you is easy. They want to know that you’re enthusiastic about your work and that you care about them.
Is your website design conveying that message?
Or does it exist as a work of art that appeals only to you?
Functional design converts web visitors into potential clients.
There are lots of fads in website design. Those design choices will come and go. But, a focused and functional design can last and help your firm achieve success online.
When attorneys stick with simple designs that put their potential clients first, they can avoid the problems that accompany overly complicated designs.
A simple design, when done well, speaks to the emotions of your potential clients, draws their eye, and makes it easy for them to see that contacting your law firm is the right choice for them.
To learn more about law firm website designs that work, listen to our podcast, “What Attorneys Should Know About Law Firm Website Design.”