Four must-haves for your next law firm website.

by Great Jakes Marketing

Web consultants will agree on several basics that should be part of every new law firm website initiative. These include the following: a design that inspires users, a user experience that is intuitive, an architecture that supports SEO, and clear messaging.

Although these might be difficult to achieve, they are must-haves. But great websites, ones that can further a firm’s business goals, need to do more than the basics.

If your firm is considering building a website in 2013 or 2014, here are a few other things that you’ll find helpful to add to your short-list of “must-haves.”

Responsive design mobile technology.

What is it?

Responsive design is a next-generation web design technique that is rapidly being adopted by major corporations around the world. The technology re-packages each page of your website to fit on any screen size, automatically.

Why you need it.

Mobile usage is skyrocketing, making it essential that one’s website be mobile compatible. In the past year, mobile device usage on law firm websites has increased by 101%. We are conservatively predicting that within two years, nearly 40% of the visitors to your website will be arriving on some type of mobile device.

Responsive design, a coding technique endorsed by Google, ensures that your website is accessible and useful, regardless of what type of device is being used to access it. That’s important because users are increasingly beginning their research on one device, like a smart-phone, and continuing it on another, like a laptop or desktop computer.

Responsive design ensures a smooth user-experience and better access to the attorney-generated content that your firm is publishing. Read this article to learn more about how this new technology is affecting law firms.

Ability to add “odd-ball” content.

What is it?

Odd-ball content is a name we invented for all the content that attorneys produce that is not pure text – such as video, audio recordings, photo galleries and PowerPoint presentations and webinars.

Why you need it.

Having rich media content is no longer odd! In fact, the things that comprise “odd-ball” content, like video or podcasts, are so common today that it would appear odd to not be able to easily include them in every attorney bio, practice area or other section of the website.

More significantly, content, regardless of whether it is something like an article or a radio interview, helps an attorney (or practice area) substantiate their claims of expertise. If the PowerPoint from the keynote address that your attorney just gave helps make the case for their experience, then it makes sense for it to be easily found in their bio.

Blog integration.

What is it?

The ability to propagate the blog posts that an attorney writes, directly to their bio or to a particular practice area. Here’s an example.

Why you need it.

The prevalence of attorney blogs continues to grow – which makes sense because well-written blogs have proven to be wonderful reputation-enhancing tools for attorneys. The 2013 Greentarget study found that 55% of in-house counsel indicate that they read attorney-authored blogs and 53% say that such blogs influence hiring decisions.

Given all this, it just makes sense that if an attorney or practice area has a blog, it should be easily found. Teasing to blog posts from within an attorney’s bio (or a practice area) means that the posts are easily accessed, consumed and shared.

“Custom” page capability.

What is it?

In short, a “custom” page is a page that could contain any type of information that helps an attorney (or practice group) grow their practice.

Why you need it.

Every attorney and practice area is different. Therefore, the information that each may need to share might not always fit neatly into pre-arranged templates.

This attorney’s “Beyond the Office” page is an example of a custom page – he’s the only attorney in the firm that could possibly have it. Another example could be a practice area with unique information that is specific to its area of focus.

Custom-page functionality allows the marketing department to respond to unique business development needs of an individual attorney or practice area. It also offers marketers flexibility that was unavailable in older websites – and that opens up endless possibilities.

While compiling the above list, I attempted to narrow down the must-haves to just things that I’d recommend to a friend if they were in the midst of a website overhaul. There is a lot of other useful functionality in law firm websites today, and I encourage you to explore it.

Are there any other types of functionality that you think are “must-haves” for a law firm to include in their next launch? I look forward to your comments.

LOADING PDF: If there are any problems, click here to download the file.

Written by:

Great Jakes Marketing

Great Jakes Marketing on:

Readers' Choice 2017
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:
Sign up using*

Already signed up? Log in here

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.
Custom Email Digest
Privacy Policy (Updated: October 8, 2015):

JD Supra provides users with access to its legal industry publishing services (the "Service") through its website (the "Website") as well as through other sources. Our policies with regard to data collection and use of personal information of users of the Service, regardless of the manner in which users access the Service, and visitors to the Website are set forth in this statement ("Policy"). By using the Service, you signify your acceptance of this Policy.

Information Collection and Use by JD Supra

JD Supra collects users' names, companies, titles, e-mail address and industry. JD Supra also tracks the pages that users visit, logs IP addresses and aggregates non-personally identifiable user data and browser type. This data is gathered using cookies and other technologies.

The information and data collected is used to authenticate users and to send notifications relating to the Service, including email alerts to which users have subscribed; to manage the Service and Website, to improve the Service and to customize the user's experience. This information is also provided to the authors of the content to give them insight into their readership and help them to improve their content, so that it is most useful for our users.

JD Supra does not sell, rent or otherwise provide your details to third parties, other than to the authors of the content on JD Supra.

If you prefer not to enable cookies, you may change your browser settings to disable cookies; however, please note that rejecting cookies while visiting the Website may result in certain parts of the Website not operating correctly or as efficiently as if cookies were allowed.

Email Choice/Opt-out

Users who opt in to receive emails may choose to no longer receive e-mail updates and newsletters by selecting the "opt-out of future email" option in the email they receive from JD Supra or in their JD Supra account management screen.


JD Supra takes reasonable precautions to insure that user information is kept private. We restrict access to user information to those individuals who reasonably need access to perform their job functions, such as our third party email service, customer service personnel and technical staff. However, please note that no method of transmitting or storing data is completely secure and we cannot guarantee the security of user information. Unauthorized entry or use, hardware or software failure, and other factors may compromise the security of user information at any time.

If you have reason to believe that your interaction with us is no longer secure, you must immediately notify us of the problem by contacting us at In the unlikely event that we believe that the security of your user information in our possession or control may have been compromised, we may seek to notify you of that development and, if so, will endeavor to do so as promptly as practicable under the circumstances.

Sharing and Disclosure of Information JD Supra Collects

Except as otherwise described in this privacy statement, JD Supra will not disclose personal information to any third party unless we believe that disclosure is necessary to: (1) comply with applicable laws; (2) respond to governmental inquiries or requests; (3) comply with valid legal process; (4) protect the rights, privacy, safety or property of JD Supra, users of the Service, Website visitors or the public; (5) permit us to pursue available remedies or limit the damages that we may sustain; and (6) enforce our Terms & Conditions of Use.

In the event there is a change in the corporate structure of JD Supra such as, but not limited to, merger, consolidation, sale, liquidation or transfer of substantial assets, JD Supra may, in its sole discretion, transfer, sell or assign information collected on and through the Service to one or more affiliated or unaffiliated third parties.

Links to Other Websites

This Website and the Service may contain links to other websites. The operator of such other websites may collect information about you, including through cookies or other technologies. If you are using the Service through the Website and link to another site, you will leave the Website and this Policy will not apply to your use of and activity on those other sites. We encourage you to read the legal notices posted on those sites, including their privacy policies. We shall have no responsibility or liability for your visitation to, and the data collection and use practices of, such other sites. This Policy applies solely to the information collected in connection with your use of this Website and does not apply to any practices conducted offline or in connection with any other websites.

Changes in Our Privacy Policy

We reserve the right to change this Policy at any time. Please refer to the date at the top of this page to determine when this Policy was last revised. Any changes to our privacy policy will become effective upon posting of the revised policy on the Website. By continuing to use the Service or Website following such changes, you will be deemed to have agreed to such changes. If you do not agree with the terms of this Policy, as it may be amended from time to time, in whole or part, please do not continue using the Service or the Website.

Contacting JD Supra

If you have any questions about this privacy statement, the practices of this site, your dealings with this Web site, or if you would like to change any of the information you have provided to us, please contact us at:

- hide
*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.