Did you take a look at the Top 100 Law Firm Websites? What did you think? Did any stand out to you as class-leadings sites?
For me there was one that did… and I’ll tell you which one in a moment… But first, those that have it wrong, the honourable mentions, and why.
So you say you’re client focussed, huh?
The problem with most of the websites we looked at, probably as much as 95% of them, is that they are just not client focussed. The majority start with a pitch about themselves. They typically say they are innovative, experts in their field, and client focussed. But if they are client focussed, why doesn’t the website illustrate that?
Solicitors tell me all the time that their job is to solve client’s problems. So assuming I am a client coming to your website for the first time, how can I easily map my problem onto the services you offer? Most websites we looked at structured their content based on the practice areas of the firm. But guess what? Clients don’t care about the internal organisation of law firms, and it’s no good hoping they will learn. Instead think about how you can present your business in the way that clients think. Make easy access to answers your top priority.
Mischon de Reya has a minimalist home page with a Google-style search box front and centre.
Client focussed? Yes. Helping me map my problems to solutions? Not a bad start… We tried a few search terms and came up trumps two thirds of the time.
Russell Jones & Walker have gone for a best of both worlds approach – a similar search box takes priority, with practice areas on the right.
Sadly the search didn’t quite hit the spot when we tried it. It seemed to prioritise news stories over explaining how Russell Jones & Walker could help solve my problem. Nevertheless, they deserve an honourable mention for avoiding all the usual home page trumpet blowing, focussing on the client and providing the Expert Guide PDF downloads shown on the right of the screenshot.
And the winner is…
The CubeSocial Law Firm Website of 2010 award goes to Browne Jacobson for putting clients right at the heart of the website, providing simple clear navigation based on the client’s need and using the client’s language rather than internal law firm boundaries to structure content. Go on, click through to the Browne Jacobson website and have a look. Not only is it very functional, it’s also beautifully designed and interactive. Congratulations to all involved.
Don’t agree with us? Think your firm’s website is better? Leave a comment below and let us know why.