The legal Marketing industry is rapidly evolving with firms now turning to online methods to acquire new clients. However, many law firms are making mistakes that are costing them potential clients. A study by LexisNexis found that over 60% of legal consumers use search engines to find a lawyer. This highlights the importance of having a strong online presence for law firms. In this blog, we will outline the top 10 biggest mistakes that law firms make when trying to get new clients online. With so many firms competing for online visibility, it’s important to be aware of and avoid these common mistakes.
Mistake #1: Failing to Optimise Your Website for Search Engines
One of the most common mistakes law firms make is failing to optimise their website for search engines. This suggests that your site may not be visible to potential clients who are searching for legal services online. Check that your website is optimised for keywords related to your practice area and location, eg ‘personal injury New York’. Additionally, ensure that your website is mobile responsive and extremely fast to load, given the high percentage of search traffic now done on mobile.
Mistake #2: Not Having a Blog
Many law firms make the mistake of not having a blog on their website. Having a blog is an excellent way to provide valuable content to potential clients, establishing your firm in its specialised area. It can also help to improve your search engine rankings. By regularly publishing current and informative blog posts, you can attract potential clients who are searching for information related to your practice area. It builds your topical authority of the areas you serve and ensures you gain visibility online with people searching within that area.
Mistake #3: Not Utilising Social Media
Social media is a great tool that can help law firms gain new clients. Generic cookie-clutter posts are not what’s going to get you a large and engaged audience.
Many firms are failing to use social media to its full potential. Creating a social media strategy and regularly posting relevant and engaging content, you can reach a wider audience and attract potential clients. This is where you have the opportunity to show your personality, what your firm stands for and gives you the chance to build a relationship with your audience.
Mistake #4: Not Utilising Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising
One of the biggest mistakes law firms make when trying to grow business online is not utilising pay-per-click (PPC) advertising. PPC advertising, such as Google Ads, is a great tool which allows you to get in front of potential clients who are searching for legal services online. By not allocating a section of your budget towards PPC advertising, your firm will miss out on a significant number of potential clients on a daily basis. This is a channel that guarantees you eyeballs on what you do.
Mistake #5: Not Having Strong Social Proof or Reviews
Positive reviews can help attract new clients. However, many law firms make the mistake of not having strong enough social proof or a reviews section on their website to display the experiences of current clients. With positive feedback from clients, you can build trust and credibility with new and potential clients. It’s important to implement a review collection system that means you’re always showcasing the past good work you’ve done.
Mistake #6: Not Having a Strong Online Reputation
Your online reputation can impact your ability to bring in new business, with many law firms making the mistake of not monitoring their online presence. This means that negative reviews and comments can go unnoticed and can harm your reputation. Make sure to regularly monitor online comments and promptly address any negative feedback. There are options to get reviews taken down (if false and harmful), if it remains, it’s best to address it.
Mistake #7: Unorganised Follow-Up Process
All law firms need to have a clear SOP for when an inbound lead comes in from an online channel. There should be clear steps in place depending on the service the person is interested in. This is an all too common mistake with law firms where people interested in working with your firm can slip through the cracks. When an enquiry comes in online, treat it as though that person has just walked into the front of your office to ensure they have a positive first experience of your firm.
Mistake #8: Not Having A Clear Call-to-Action
Many law firms make the mistake of not having clear calls-to-action on their website. A call-to-action is a design or prompt that encourages visitors to take a specific action, such as contacting the firm or scheduling a consultation. Without this potential clients may leave your website without taking any action. What’s the main thing you want prospective clients to do when they visit your website, whatever it is, this should be front and center.
Mistake #9: Not Tracking and Analysing PPC Campaigns
Another mistake that law firms make when it comes to PPC advertising is not tracking and analysing their campaigns. Without this, it’s difficult to determine the effectiveness of your PPC campaigns and make necessary adjustments to improve your results. Using tools such as Google Analytics allows you to track the performance of your firm’s PPC campaigns and make data-driven decisions.
Mistake #10: Not Allocating Enough Budget
Many law firms don’t recognise the investment needed to compete online. Calculate out the maths that you need to be successful and get an opinion from an expert to ensure your expectations are realistic. Know the amount you need to be paying for a new lead or client for a campaign to be successful. Under resourcing or funding a campaign will reduce your chances of success. For example, when done correctly, PPC advertising is a cost-effective way to reach potential clients. Law firms should consider allocating a significant portion of their budget to online marketing and advertising as there is a clear connection between that and new client acquisition.