One of the least exciting areas of marketing is conversion rate optimization – the exercise of squeezing the most potential possible out of a website. The lawyer marketing industry is fiercely competitive and making some tweaks to a law firm’s website can help increase the number of leads and calls a practice receives. More crucially, this occurs without needing to bring any more visitors to the site.
We go over 13 ways that your law firm can increase the number of leads and conversions receives through its website every month. Implementing these simple tactics will help lower your cost per lead, but also has tremendous benefits at scale. As you engage in larger lawyer SEO campaigns, PPC ads, AdWords or virtually anything else that drives potential clients to your website, you’ll convert more of them since your website is optimized to convert.
1. Use a Sticky Mobile Bar
Many of your website users are going to be visiting your website from their smartphones.
It wouldn’t be uncommon for your website to see nearly 50% of its visitors browsing your practice’s website from their smartphone. We’ve heard law firms have found more website conversions and actions are taken from desktop devices than mobile and therefore, they put a higher dollar value on driving desktop traffic.
After all, what would you expect if your website wasn’t optimized to convert mobile traffic?
Implementing a sticky mobile bar will keep your most valuable conversion actions near visitors and prospective clients’ fingertips. Arguably the most valuable action a law firm can receive is a phone call. By placing a click-to-call button on the mobile CTA bar, you’ll drive more phone calls to your firm immediately. The smartphones makeup half of your audience’s browsing device of choice and making a phone call is frictionless when you give them a button to tap from your mobile site.
Limit the number of conversion actions you place on your sticky call to action bar between 1 to 3 actions. More than three buttons may become too close together, resulting in either mistaken clicks or too many options to choose from.
2. Your Firm’s CTA and Phone Number Needs to be Above the Fold
In marketing, it’s important to define the action you want prospects and visitors to take once they reach your website. Generally, the primary action that attorneys want prospective clients to take is to call their firm. It’s the best way to secure immediate contact and screen the caller to see if the law firm can help them with their legal matter.
Hence, the phone number and the call to action (e.g. “Call now for a Free Consultation”, etc.) needs to one of the first elements that a visitor sees when they visit your site. We conducted a law firm marketing study, looking at many of the top-ranking law firm websites and what they were doing to earn them the top spots in Google organic search. During our research, we discovered some stats about how these websites implemented their call to actions and CRO.
Among other stats, we found that:
- 65.9% of law firm websites in our study had the phone number in top right corner
- 13.4% had the phone number OR a CTA in the top-left
- 78.1% of attorney websites had at least one CTA above the fold
So, the best place, statistically speaking to place your phone number and its call to action is the top-right corner of the desktop website.
Use prominent colors and make your CTA stand out. Draw your visitors’ eyes to this element so that it’s clear to see. Make sure that the phone number is tappable so that mobile users can call directly from their phones.
3. Add a Second Call to Action Option
Add a contact form or chat option for people who rather type or text with your firm initially. Many people are introverted, shy, or simply prefer to contact you or be contacted over email initially. In other situations, because of the sensitive nature of their case, they prefer to communicate via email or text initially, as they don’t want their significant others or other people in their proximity to know they’re consulting a lawyer for a troubling or sensitive legal matter.
4. Speed Up Your Website
One simple way to increase a firm’s conversion rates is by decreasing the page’s loading time. Walmart found some sound correlations between the load time and conversion rates, with conversions dropping off significantly as load time increases from 1 to 4 seconds. As load time passes by the 2-second mark, conversion rates drop off significantly.
While we may be dealing with small, single-digit enhancements in conversion rates and sometimes only decimals, this is still thousands to tens of thousands of dollars to a law firm per month or quarter. If a law firm’s web page converts 3% of traffic and can be increased to 3.5% from loading speed improvements, every 200 visitors generate 7 leads vs. 6 leads before speed optimizations.
5. Create Custom Landing Pages for Specific Legal Services and PPC Campaigns
Consider hosting a special set of pages on your website, known as landing pages. These pages are designed to do one thing: convert visitors into leads, so that our law firm can convert these leads in to clients later during the intake and consultation process. As you run targeted ads to different audiences seeking specific legal services, you’ll want to customize your funnel so that your landing page speaks to them.
Create a landing page for each area of practice you’re seeking to promote. These pages should be tuned with several opportunities to take action.
6. Keep Visitors on the Landing Page
For law firms running PPC ads, such as AdWords campaigns, a critical component to driving more leads involves reducing the number of options visitors can take. In effect, you want to limit their actionable options or number of buttons they have to click on. Ultimately, you want as many visitors as possible to click a contact button or call your law firm. Therefore, eliminate links and menus that have them navigate around your website.
This isn’t to say you should be removing your main menu from your website, however landing pages for paid online ads, designed specifically to drive more leads should be made lean to drive as many visitors to pick up the phone or submit a contact lead form as possible.
7. Define and Track Value-Based Conversion Actions
Regardless if you’re using an organic search, social media or PPC traffic strategy, you’ll want to define a set of conversion actions and goals to measure from your website and ad campaigns. This includes actions that prospective clients take such as:
- Phone calls
- Form Submissions
- Live Chats
- Visiting the Contact Page
Each of these should be given a dollar value. Typically, a phone call or a for m submission will be worth multiples more than someone visiting the contact page (i.e. $500 vs. $25). Visiting a key page such as a “contact us” page is worth something. However, it isn’t the same as someone picking up the phone and calling your law firm and therefore doesn’t merit the same value.
Setting up conversion and goal tracking will give you a clear-cut understanding of what marketing channels that send traffic to your website are directly generating value and which do not.
We’ll look further in-depth on this point in Tip #13, below.
8. Give Visitors Options on How to Contact You
Give users the ability to either submit a consultation request form or make a phone call immediately will greatly increase the number of overall leads that your law firm receives. It’s understandable that most firms want to primarily receive phone calls. However, not everyone wants to pick up the phone.
Instead, by creating several contact options, your law firm will significantly increase the number of leads it generates.
Consider using some combination of the following elements:
- Contact Form
- Phone Call
- Live Chat
- Text Messaging
You don’t have to use all five, nor is it recommended to use all of them. Typically, after giving people several options to contact a law office, conversions will level off. You don’t have to offer a dozen different options. Give users two or three ways to contact you and don’t overwhelm them with too much.
9. Send a Follow-up Message
When using any contact or conversion channel other than a phone call, you should always send a follow-up message immediately. This can be implemented with SMS/Text systems, contact forms, email and live chat systems. This is just an auto-responder that will let the person know that they’re connected with you or that your office received their message and will get back to them soon. Letting people know that their message didn’t simply disappear into the ether is a simple, but effective tactic to ensuring they wait for your response rather than contacting another lawyer competing for their business.
10. Retarget Ads to Non-Converters
Concentrating on marketing to a well-targeted audience is critical for good conversion rates. However, far from every site visitor will convert. Some of them will never convert for one reason or another, but many of them just weren’t ready to take action that particular moment in time.
A simple way to improve your conversion rates is to retarget ads to the segment of people who didn’t convert when they previously visited your website. Google, Facebook and LinkedIn all have website retargeting tools that allow you to advertise only to people who previously visited your website.
These ad platforms also give you the ability to narrow down your law firm’s website traffic to an even more specific segment, such as people who didn’t take a conversion action on your site (i.e. didn’t call or contact your practice). These are great ways to boost your conversion rates by getting back in front of people who expressed interest in hiring a lawyer but haven’t yet contacted you.
11. Use Static Images to Increase Conversion Rate
Websites are getting increasingly advanced, with more features and cool effects, animations, video and so on. Sometimes, the best thing to do is to keep it simple. Many of these effects may impress people when they look at the website, but in fact, for the majority of the interaction, they merely serve as a distraction.
The purpose of conversions is for people to take one of several available actions that lead to them contacting a lawyer at your office. By removing the clutter and distractions, your site’s call to actions become more pronounced instead of competing with animation and special effects for your audience’s attention.
The study we referred to earlier found that 65.9% of the top-ranking law firm websites used static images on their pages.
12. Use Compelling Messaging that Speaks to Your Target Clients
Why should prospective clients choose your law firm?
That’s a critical question that you need to answer. Your law firm’s messaging needs to be compelling, consistent and engaging. Both on your website and in your advertisements.
First, you need to define your target clients and then determine an efficient strategy for targeting that audience online, whether through search, banner ads, social media or otherwise. Once you’re in front of a well-targeted audience, you need to deliver your law firm’s message. Something that speaks to them and intrigues them.
Mention your business’ features, benefits and compelling messages. Use copy that separates you from the other 9 out of 10 law firms advertising to your audience.
Finally, this ad copy should aim to address the common pains and frustrations that prospective clients may have about hiring a lawyer. By putting these issues or uncertainties that prospects have to rest through your website’s copy, you can greatly increase your conversion rates.
Clio’s 2018 Legal Trends Report outlines some very interesting statistics
- 42% percent of people hire a lawyer because they didn’t think they could handle their legal issue without one
- Only 35% of legal consumers said they hired a lawyer because they felt they found one they could trust
- 25% of people who hired a lawyer thought that it was affordable
- 41% of people believed that hiring a lawyer would be beneficial to their case’s outcome
Also in the report, were common pains or barriers that resulted in 22% of consumers who prefer to avoid hiring a lawyer
- 39% of consumers said that working with a lawyer seems overwhelming and 32% believe that hiring a lawyer is too much trouble
- 16% of respondents said that lawyers aren’t necessary when dealing with legal problems
- Only 47% of respondents said lawyers are pleasant to work with, meaning that 53% find it unpleasant
- 54% believe they can never know the total cost of hiring a lawyer and 21% of respondents don’t think that a lawyer is worth the money
So, what can we take away from all of this?
Use this data to address the concerns and pains that these segments of consumers and prospective legal clients face or believe in. Talk about how simple it is to get started working with a lawyer and how hiring a lawyer at your firm can make all of the difference in their legal matters. If you were to write copy that resolved half of these pain points or barriers to prospects picking up the phone to call your office, then you’re bound to see an increase in your conversions.
13. Measure and Focus on Marketing that Produces Results
One of the most important components of an effective marketing strategy and increasing conversion rates is knowing where to focus marketing efforts and investments. This boils down to having as close to a perfect tracking and monitoring system as possible to comprehend what’s working and what’s not.
Tools such as Google Analytics and Data Studio can be the primary analytics and dashboards for measuring your law firm’s most effective marketing channels and campaigns. This will tell you which pages are producing the most leads and conversions, which campaigns, how much it costs to acquire a new lead from each channel and campaign. That’s just the tip of the iceberg with these tools. This will give you greater certainty and insights into what’s working and what marketing programs should be cut or revamped.
Increasing conversion rates for any business takes time to understand, track and measure. Above, we went over only a handful of simple, but effective strategies that we’ve used to increase our partners’ law firm conversion rates and leads. There’s also a lot of the more scientific practices, such as A/B testing that we didn’t cover. A/B testing is a critical practice to try new ideas and discover methods to further optimize conversion rates.
In the article above we stuck to tried and true tactics that generate awesome returns and will go a long way for your law firm. Implement the lead conversion tips discussed above to start squeezing more potential out of your firm’s website and online marketing strategy.