Law firms need a website to get the attention of search engines and potential clients. Investing in the right web design and SEO for attorneys is crucial to:
- Stand out from your competition
- Effectively communicate with your target market
- Build trust with viewers to encourage conversions
This isn’t like every other list of best law firm websites out there. We didn’t just find aesthetically pleasing sites to throw together so we could rank on Google.
We wanted to give you a resource that breaks down the underlying psychology, user experience, and conversion rate best practices so you can understand.
We wanted to give you the why. Not just the what.
From personal injury law firms to business law, family law, criminal defense, estate planning, and beyond, see what takeaways (both good and bad) can be applied to your own site.
Home Page (Above the Fold)
Your headline is the most important thing to get right on your home page. It should be the first thing people see when they land on the page. It should make it immediately clear what you do and reassure the visitor that they’re right where they want to be.
The Champion Firm does this by having a clear and prominent headline that conveys their value proposition (also called a unique value proposition).
The headline focuses on the problem their target client has and makes it clear that they’ve arrived at a place that has a solution. It effectively says, “If you’re injured and don’t know what to do, we can help.”
The worst thing you can do with your headline is focus on yourself instead of the visitor. Your entire website should be all about them, not you.
Above the headline, the slightly smaller text that reads “Marietta Personal Injury Lawyers” signals to visitors who their target audience is—people who need a lawyer near Marietta.
- It’s the largest text element above the fold.
- It contrasts well with the background.
- It’s benefits-driven and speaks specifically to the visitor’s problem.
What Could Be Better?
- The photo of the attorneys draws focus to them and away from the headline. You don’t want to distract visitors from the most important element on the page. It also doesn’t give the visitor anything they can directly relate to. To build trust with visitors, consider using a photo of one of your attorneys with one of your clients that you’ve helped.
- The logo in the navigation area is massive. Every pixel above the fold is precious real estate. If this firm reduced the size of their logo, they could have fit some social proof above the fold on mobile.
- This home page could use a clear call to action above the fold. They have a button that allows the reader to contact the firm for a consultation, but you need to scroll to see it.
If you’re going to have live chat on your website—customize it like The Champion Firm has. Don’t let your chat widget take over too much of the screen.
It should be there so the visitor can easily access it but don’t ruin their experience while they’re doing research.
The Champion Firm uses a photo of their lead attorney next to the chat, making it more inviting. People naturally gravitate toward human faces, and while the visitor may not actually talk to that attorney, it signals to people that when they start a conversation, it’s going to be with a person and not a chatbot.
One thing that could have made their chat widget better is if it waited to popup until after the visitor had been on the page for 10-15 seconds or appeared after they’ve scrolled down the page a bit.
Having it there right when the page loads will cause some folks to get distracted and not pay as much attention to the headline.
This firm includes a professionally-made video that does a great job building trust with visitors. It gets everything right by talking about the questions and problems their clients face as well as showcasing real clients talking about their situations and what the firm did for them.
I cannot say this enough times: customer testimonials are one of the most impactful things your firm can invest in to capture demand when people visit your website and bring in more cases.
You’re redirected to a contact page when you click their call to action to get a free consult.
Their contact form provides context for the visitor. A lot of law firms just throw up a form and expect visitors to fill it out.
If you want to increase your contact form submissions, include copy that makes it clear what problems you can help people solve and what they can expect if they fill out the form.
Updated 11/08/2023: The Champion Firm made some positive changes to their contact page since we first published this article.
Their old contact form was a multi-step form that asked users to fill in their contact information step-by-step. Their new form is far simpler and asks for all of the potential client’s information on one page.
This change is a step in the right direction as far as potentially increasing conversion rates go.
Multi-step forms have been shown to increase conversion rates. People like to finish things they started, but sometimes the hardest thing to do is getting started to begin with.
There’s still one holdover from the firm’s old contact firm that could hold back conversion rates.
The Champion Firm’s contact form asks visitors to self-select the type of claim they have.
Asking visitors the cause of their claim can be a good way to reduce the number of low-quality submissions you receive, but you have to be careful about the language you use.
The Champion Firm uses buttons that include professional negligence, premise liability, and wrongful death.
Your average person does not know what those mean. If you’re going to ask people this, use terminology they can understand (e.g., were you injured on someone else’s property).
Also, if you’re going this route—be prepared to lose out on many valuable leads. Firms that do this are doing it for themselves, not their clients.
You may end up with more junk leads, but it’s not your client’s job to qualify themselves. It’s yours.
If you’re investing in SEO, a majority of your visitors first interaction with your website will be through a blog post.
As such, your blog post template should receive as much care and attention as your home page.
Bad: Don’t use large hero images and headlines at the top of your blog posts. It pushes the content (what people came to your page for) below the fold.
As a general rule of thumb, the sooner you can get people reading the content on your page, the better off you’ll be.
Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon to see examples like this where everything looks great on desktop but is neglected on mobile (the exact opposite of how you prioritize user experience).
That being said, once you get into the meat of the page, things get better.
The Champion Firm keeps their paragraphs short and breaks them up into bite-sized chunks. This is best practice as no one wants to scroll through a long wall of text.
Use clear subheadings like this throughout your articles to make things more scannable. One thing this firm could have done better is to make their subheading about the common reasons claims are denied slightly bigger than the reasons themselves (e.g. disputed liability).
It’s best practice to make things scannable so readers can quickly find the information they’re looking for. Unlike home pages, service pages, and landing pages, don’t be fooled into thinking that visitors should read every word.
The goal of your blog content is to help people find what they’re looking for so as fast as possible so they can decide what to do next—which can often include contacting your firm.
The headline on service pages and location pages should make it clear that the visitor is right where they want to be. The Champion Firm does this in a straightforward way, making it clear that this page has something to do with car accident lawyers in Marietta.
Right below that, they introduce trust signals by calling out how much they’ve won for people as well as objection-handling by making it clear you don’t have to pay them until you win.
There's a call to action to get a free consult, which is great. But it’s obscured by the live chat widget. That’s bad.
Never, under any circumstances, should you obscure your calls to action if you can avoid it. Getting people to click that button is literally the most important thing you want people do.
If you’re thinking, “What does it matter if they start a chat with me instead of clicking the CTA?”
But how about this, instead of obscuring the CTA with your chat, why not have your CTA trigger the chat widget to appear?
Now that you understand some of the reasoning that goes into website design best practices, we’re going to succinctly point out what each of these remaining firms get right, what could be better, and only expand on things that deserve special attention.
If you want more detailed breakdowns of each website below, let us know and we’ll revisit this article and update it (something you should also be doing to your own content every year as well).
The CTA above the fold is good but the headline could be a bit stronger. More focus on the fact that Crouse Erikson is exclusively a family law firm could be more prominent.
Having social proof above the fold (especially on mobile) can be great. If you have client testimonials, we’d recommend using those instead of Avvo scores and other attorney awards. Potential clients don’t know what those awards mean and will relate to what other people say far more.
As you scroll through blog posts on Crouse Erickson’s, the navigation element that has options to contact them sticks to the top of the page.
This is a good practice to follow as it makes it easy for visitors to contact you if they find what they’re looking for and decide they’re ready to reach out.
For blog posts, in particular, it’s sometimes better if the contact buttons are the only element that scrolled with you and stuck to the top instead of the entire navigation.
In this instance, it’s alright since the navigation element doesn’t take up a ton of the screen’s viewport.
The headline for Gilormo Injury Law could be better. Phrases like “Fierce Advocates, Proven Results” are generic and put the focus on the attorney instead of the visitor.
Just a reminder: Every bit of copy should be visitor-centric, not attorney-centric. Talk about them, not yourself, and you’ll win.
The home page does have a great video front and center, though, that includes testimonials from real clients. If Gilormo Injury wanted to improve their headline, they could review what their clients talked about and turn it into a more compelling value prop.
Having a contact form above the fold works great for location/service pages. When you add them like this to the home page it can be a bit too premature.
In this case, it works due to the video a visitor would ideally watch beforehand and learn everything they need to feel comfortable moving forward and contacting this firm.
Having a call button remain visible in the navigation on mobile is something a lot of firms forget about. Gilormo handles this effectively and increases the odds a visitor will use it instead of expecting them to open your navigation to find it.
That being said, you have to scroll 75% of the way down this page past several Google Map embeds to get to the contact form. Gilormo could improve the UX here by moving the contact form above the map embeds or adding a button that automatically scrolls the visitor to the contact form after clicking it.
Rankings.io designed this website for Ed Bernstein and Associates from the ground up. We built this site with SEO and client experience in mind.
This site is a 2023 dotCOMM Awards Platinum Winner in recognition of the design work that went into creating it.
This site opens with a strong headline promising visitors that they’ll work with a real person and get real results.
The very top of the page features a bright blue banner with a call to action. It's a simple message—tap this button if you want to cut to a free consultation.
The top of a headshot of Ed Bernstein is just visible above the fold on most mobile devices. This indicates to readers that there's more to see if they scroll down.
Visitors who scroll down see a personal message from Ed Bernstein. This unique message lets him tell visitors his story while reinforcing the personal touch idea from the page headline.
This site’s contact page is about as simple as you can get. And simple is the best thing for contact pages.
Visitors have the option of filling out the form for a free consultation or tapping the phone number to speak to the firm right away.
Addresses and phone numbers for each of the firm’s offices follow the contact form. This lets visitors choose from even more options to get in touch.
A map showing the primary office sits below the contact information. This is yet another way for visitors to find and contact the firm.
The site’s attorney bio pages also cut right to the chase. Visitors see the attorney’s name, the phone number to call, and a contact email. Then there’s a big blue button to schedule a call.
And the top of the page still includes a clickable contact and phone number button.
There’s a ton of biographical info below each attorney’s photo, but all of the attorney pages get the important stuff out of the way first.
Nicolet Law’s site is another 2023 dotCOMM Platinum Winner built by Rankings.io. We custom-coded this site for blazing fast speed. It’s not just a pretty page. It’s an effective one, too.
Nicolet Law’s home page opens with some clear positioning statements.
The primary headline positions them as having been voted the best personal injury law firm. The tagline above makes it clear that they offer their services in the Midwest.
There are plenty of ways visitors can get in touch with the firm without having to scroll at all, too.
At the very top of the page is a click-to-call button. There’s a chat head that allows visitors to speak with someone at the firm. A banner at the bottom gives visitors a choice between live chat and texting with the firm.
The next full viewport shows an approachable photo of Russell D. Nicolet, the firm's president. It also has an illustrated logo of Nicolet with his trademark beard, adding some personality to the mix.
Visitors still have the option to chat or text, but now there are additional calls to action for a free case evaluation or phone call.
The home page covers the standards you would expect an attorney to have like case wins, how they can help, and photos of the attorneys. But what stands out is that almost every section ends with an opt-in for a case evaluation.
Nicolet Law's contact page has a simple hero section inviting the reader to schedule a call. The beard logo again adds some personality to the page. And the very top of the page still shows the phone number button for visitors who don’t want to fill out the form.
Interacting with the page causes live chat features to pop in. This gives the visitor still more methods to reach out.
The contact form is simple and direct. All the visitor needs to do is fill out six fields, and they’re set to see an attorney.
An important and often overlooked question is asking visitors how they heard about the firm. Knowing the answer to that is a great way to know what parts of your law firm marketing are paying off.
Attorney pages on this site give a bit of backstory on each attorney.
Notice how the message here isn’t about how Russell Nicolet is a “fierce advocate” or is “uniquely qualified.” Instead, it’s about how he wants to help people. It puts the focus on the soft skills rather than the legal specialization.
Chat elements and calls to action appear when you interact with the page, so visitors get a little bit of direction when they use the site.
This headline may look attorney-centric at first, but it’s not. The implied message is that YOU can win if YOU hire Levin. It’s both client-centric and brand-centric—bonding them together in three simple words. 🤌
The Levin Firm displays a fantastic use of copy on their home page above the fold here. The paragraph below the headline is very client centric. It makes it clear to potential clients that the sole focus of The Levin Firm is to get their clients what they want.
Levin gets everything right here. Their primary CTA (call them) contrasts well with the background and has more prominence than their secondary CTA (free consultation).
It’s also placed right where a person’s finger would sit when using their phone—making it easy to tap. This is the level of attention to detail more websites should consider when designing their sites.
Every call button on this page will automatically trigger a phone’s call context menu when tapped. While some folks may have think they’ve overdone things here, it’s completely fine since this is a contact page and the primary reason a person visits your contact page is to…contact you.
Attorney pages can be difficult to get right, but The Levin Firm does a great job here. Clients aren’t the only people who come to these pages, in fact, these are the main pages other attorneys visit when they’re trying to find someone to send a referral to.
Adding contact information for phone, fax, and email makes it easier for your peers to get a hold of you and send you documents when email isn’t an option.
If you're a PI lawyer looking for a great example, The Levin Firm's site is one of the best personal injury websites around.
What Makes a Good Law Firm Website?
Following a few important guidelines unlocks your website's potential to rank on Google and attract new clients. Sites built by people who ignore these principles have trouble reaching the right people.
Take this law firm website we redesigned and relaunched for an attorney in The Bronx, for example:
The old site only appeared in Google Maps in a few places near the office. Now, the redesigned website ranks across New York City and reaches far more people.
The expert tips below will help your site square up with the competition, too.
Getting your law firm’s website design requires a lot more than aesthetics and chest-thumping. The words on your page are the most important thing. If you don’t believe me, just take a look at this page with all of the words removed:
The pictures look great, but they’re meaningless without copy.
Obsession Over User Experience
User experience refers to the overall experience a viewer has with your website. If someone can't find what they need, if it loads too slowly, or if the site seems hard to read or buggy, they'll bounce off your page quickly. In fact, 88% of users won't come back to a website where they had a bad experience.
Every time this happens is a lost opportunity to convert someone into a paying client.
UX Best Practices for Attorney Websites:
- Keeping what you say relevant for the visitor (e.g., don’t waste their time).
- Use images that are relevant to the copy (e.g., don’t just add images to fill in empty areas).
- Everyone talks about mobile-first, but after reviewing hundreds of attorney’s websites, it’s clear that most of them were built for desktop and tweaked to work on mobile. When you’re having a new website built, make sure the first mockups your designer shows you are the mobile versions.
- Make sure all of your CTAs work. If a user clicks on a button, they expect it to do something.
- Make sure you’re not crowding their screen with your chat widgets and other popups.
- Make sure it loads fast. People are impatient. Images can slow down loading times a lot. Have your developer make it so they load after more critical elements like the text and background color.
You're staking your reputation, website ranking ability, and ability to convert people from viewers to clients based on the technical aspects of your site. Your law practice should stand out by showing an upfront investment in the technical aspects of your website.
Strong and Consistent Branding
Even though all the law firm websites above are unique in terms of region, practice area, and type of messaging, one thread runs through them all: clear and consistent branding.
Whether you're a tough personal injury attorney willing to go to court or a family lawyer mostly focused on mediation and collaborative divorce, you can't expect your clients to know that unless you communicate your brand and values upfront.
Similarly, choose photography assets that work well for presenting your firm's approach to helping clients (bonus points if they’re client-centric).
Branding is about more than visuals though.
It extends to social proof, such as feedback from clients and pages that demonstrate authority, such as bios, about, and results pages.
Be aware that it's a common thought to approach law firm branding generically with a "dark and brooding" presence.
If that's not your vibe, don't fall into this trap.
If you're more of a friendly and approachable lawyer, lean into this to attract and convert clients.
If branding sounds too fluffy, just think of it like this: your brand is your reputation. It’s a reflection of who you are and your values.
You don’t keep attorneys around who don’t fit your core values, right? Think about that when it comes to your website too, and you’ll be good to go.
The Right Content
The law firm website that wins is the one that has the right content for the right visitor at the right time.
To do that, create a ton of useful content that the average person can understand. Educate them, explain how you can help, and make it simple to navigate between articles and topics so they can find the answers they need.
A user makes quick judgments about a law firm based on the website, so clean design and site speed are supported by great content marketing.
When a user wants to learn more about your law firm's background, case results, and attorneys, your law firm's website should display this material in a user-friendly fashion.
Key Pages to Include on Your Website:
- A homepage with a call to action (CTA) and links to social media profiles
- An about page
- Pages for attorneys/staff
- A place to house results/case studies/testimonials
- Service landing pages (for your practice areas)
- A blog
These pages work individually, but also enhance your entire online presence through their placement on your website.
Each of these matters because they tell a little bit more about you as a firm and the way you work with clients. On your homepage and about page, you're explaining how you help your clients and how your firm sees the practice of law.
With pages for attorneys/staff and service landing pages, you're doing a deeper dive into the qualifications of your team and the main legal issues within each practice area.
On your blog, this is your chance to answer frequently-asked questions and to present yourself as a leader in your service areas.
On your homepage specifically, focus on how all your experience, knowledge, and approach to the law leads to great results for clients.
Too many law firm websites make a strong case for the attorney qualifications, but miss the value of connecting with the reader's needs.
Remember, you're the guide in the client's journey, not the hero of the story.
Make sure you have a way for visitors to easily contact you on every single page as well—especially on mobile. This needs to be easy to do 24/7 as well. Whether you use an answering service or have someone in the office, clients need to be able to reach you easily.
How We Picked These Websites
The criteria we used to evaluate these websites included:
- Is the site’s purpose clear and easy to understand? Client-focused, simple copy that everyday readers can understand is best.
- Easy to navigate? While it’s ideal that visitors would do the primary action you want them to when they land on your site, you still want to make it easy for them to get around and find exactly what they’re looking for. Particular care to how this experience is on mobile is paramount.
- Easy to convert? Whether someone wants to submit a form, call you, email you, live chat, find your address, or download a checklist—the easier you make it for users to convert (i.e., do what they want), the better.
- Attention to detail on mobile (especially sitewide)? Every experience on mobile should be considered first. From text size to the placement of your chat widgets—it’s clear when a website was designed by professionals who care about user experience instead of blindly doing what everyone else is.
If you know your website needs work and you’re not sure where to start, we’re here to help.
We'll help you get your website experience, design, and SEO on the right track to rank on the first page of Google and convert visitors when they visit (just like we did for these other firms).