Best Practices for Law Firm Websites

Regardless of who you work with, remember website development best practices:

  • Your website’s primary job is to make your phone ring. Everything else is secondary.
  • Outdated website designs discourage website visitors from picking up the phone.
  • An appropriate platform is the current version of WordPress. Avoid proprietary platforms that tie you to a particular vendor.
  • Launching a website should take roughly 3-8 weeks.
  • The cost for most legal websites should be a one time spend of roughly $5-$8,000. The variability is based on how particular you are about the design. Alternatively, opt for a lower ongoing subscription cost of no more than $300 a month.
  • With a few clear exceptions, law firms should have one website. Marketing two websites is more than twice as expensive and confuses search engines.
  • Your phone number should be clearly visible in the header of your website.
  • Your firm’s name, address, and phone number should be in the footer.
  • Each office location should have its own page, which lists the name, address, phone number and directions.
  • Your website should appear differently on mobile devices than on a desktop. This is called responsive design. Tapping the phone number from a smartphone should dial your front desk.
  • Make sure YOU own your domain and not your website developer. FindLaw is notorious for this, but others have done the same.
  • Have your WordPress site hosted by a managed WordPress host (we use WPEngine) to future-proof your site and proactively guard against hacks and spam. This costs more but is absolutely worth it.
  • Make sure you keep your existing Google Analytics code when you launch your new website.
  • If you are updating or replacing an old site, get professional help to ensure you have correctly redirected legacy URLs.
  • Install the Yoast SEO plug-in on WordPress sites. If you find this confusing or too technical, borrow an hour of someone’s time who understands it.
  • If you are updating an old (non-WordPress) website, migrating all of that content can increase costs based on the volume of content.

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