Whether you’re about to write a memo or a brief, it’s hard to stare at a blank page. Now, it’s even harder if that blank page is the website for your law firm.
When you’re starting to plan your website, there are countless things to consider: whether to outsource the work, what website tools to use, and what your budget should be, to name a few.
But it doesn’t always have to be that hard. If you choose a template for your website design, especially one that has built-in flexibility, you can get up and running much more quickly than if you were to design your website from scratch. Depending on the template you choose, it can not only make creating your website easier but also ensure that you have a consistent, clear brand.
It’s a lot to consider! So, in this article, we’ll help you get started. We’ll introduce what makes a good attorney website template and what to look for when selecting one for your law firm.
You want your law firm website to help clients discover and then choose your law firm. We’ve waxed poetic about the importance of a good legal website. If you’re new to online marketing, getting started is as simple as selecting the right template.
Your choice of template will impact a client’s first impression of your firm. The right template for your firm depends on what your law firm wants to achieve with its website (e.g., selling the abilities of your lawyers or getting prospective clients to fill out a contact form).
When selecting lawyer website templates, we recommend keeping three rules of thumb in mind.
Use a website builder and template that feel intuitive to you. Many templates may claim to have all the bells and whistles, but when it comes down to it, they’re just impossible to actually use. (And some of them might cost you an arm and a leg if you want to customize them.) Others might be too simplistic and won’t allow you to create an engaging or attractive lawyer website.
The key is to find the right balance for your firm and reap the benefits of more leads and potential clients. If you’re handling the creation of the website yourself, consider starting with a law firm WordPress theme or a drag-and-drop page builder.
Use a website builder and template that allow your firm to personalize your website’s pages. There may be features that are important to your firm, such as the ability to book appointments online, the capacity to host a live chat, or the ability to support a chatbot. It’s important to figure out which personalized components are important to your firm and then ensure that the template selected can support them. Functionality is key!
Personalization of your selected template through either built-in features or third-party plugins (e.g., widgets, Elementor page builder, Visual Composer, WooCommerce, WPML, or other lawyer WordPress theme plugins) is key to setting your website apart from the competition and showcasing your firm’s uniqueness.
Whether your firm specializes in ecommerce or personal injury law, an optimized website will help it attract new clients. Search engine optimization (SEO) improves your law firm’s website to boost its online visibility in search engines. For instance, Google search results rank the responses to a user’s inquiry based on the content of webpages. Thus, the more relevant your content is to the search terms entered, the more likely that your content will appear at the top of a search page.
Your selected template and website builder should have the right SEO tools to optimize your website. For optimal results, pick a template that allows you to update each page’s metadata, including the page’s meta description, and use keywords. We also recommend using a website builder and template that provides a sitemap to specific search engines.
Many law firms choose to outsource the legwork of SEO and site design to web design experts who know the ins and outs of web and template design. These experts take the headaches of web work away so you can focus on helping clients while they find ways to attract a pipeline of future business for your firm.
The user experience of your law firm’s website is critical: you want visitors to stay put, engage with your content, and then hopefully get in contact with your law office. We cannot emphasize enough the importance of your law firm's website. A thoughtful website design will keep web visitors engaged while also guiding them along in selecting your firm for legal services. However, a cluttered homepage filled with moving banners, animations, and endless pop-ups won’t convey your firm’s capabilities and might even cost you possible leads.
We recommend that your web design and layout be multipurpose: functional, accessible, and interesting. Ask yourself the following question as you make decisions: will this design and layout help potential clients find and then choose my law firm? Select the template with that question in mind. The goal is to convert leads into paying clients (and to get folks down to your legal offices).
As you focus on how to get the most out of your template, consider the following elements.
To create a compelling visual design, you’ll need forethought. Consider how visual content like lawyer headshots, videos, and graphics will appear on your website. The template that you select should not just support but also highlight this important content (think parallax display and retina-ready images). Many attorney WordPress themes have these features built in.
For example, your homepage announces who your firm is and why clients hire you. It’s also the first impression that you’ll make to prospective clients. Be sure that your law firm template complements any images you intend to display on your homepage, including in the header. Your chosen template should support (and not clash with) your firm’s logo design and color scheme. When picking a template, consider where your logo and other visual content might appear and adjust accordingly.
Additionally, the best web design is built on a responsive template. That means your website should adapt and look good on all devices (cell phones, tablets, and computers) and on all browser types (Google Chrome, Safari, and Firefox). Friendliness and ease of use are also important and will make navigation easier. The right template selection and design will ensure a positive user experience with your legal website.
When selecting your website template, give thought to the content that will be displayed on each page. For example, consider the template that you’ll use for your firm overview page as opposed to your lawyer and staff bio page. You’ll also want to carefully choose the right font for your legal website. This decision requires balancing readability, messaging, and authority.
The copy on your firm overview page should explain clearly what your firm does. Ask questions like these:
For your firm overview page, you’ll likely want a simple template with a singular focus on your firm’s core messaging.
In contrast, your lawyer and staff bio pages are intended to help potential clients get to know the folks who keep your firm running. This page will contain more information than your firm overview page, so the template for this page will be different.
We recommend a template that offers tabs for various aspects of a lawyer’s bio: law school attended, bar admissions, practice area expertise, and even client testimonials or case studies. You’ll also want your website to be able to link to secondary content, like your firm’s social media pages.
The website builder that you use should provide data on your website’s analytics. Without this valuable information regarding your potential clients’ behavior, it’s hard to track web traffic to certain landing pages and even harder to optimize your overall marketing strategy.
We recommend a website builder that delivers real-time data on your website’s analytics, including how your website ranks among competitors, and personalized marketing recommendations to help your firm make informed business decisions.
Your firm’s brand is critical, and your online presence is an essential part of your brand. The template that your law firm chooses for each aspect of its professional services can either reinforce or hurt your brand.
Before you choose a template, consider the basics outlined in this article. And, if you have any questions or decide that you’re in over your head, online marketing experts are ready to help you.