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How successful law firms' UX design turn clicks into clients

Is your law firm's website driving business away? Imagine potential clients frustrated and confused, abandoning your site before ever contacting you. This blog post reveals how bad website design can sink your ROI, and how good UX design can turn clicks into clients.

Published April 9, 2024 By Freddie Green

How often do you have a bad experience on a website? 

We’d be willing to bet that more often than not, you remember a bad experience on a website over a good one. In an interaction with a bad website over a good one, the frustration of poor design experience sticks in your mind. When a negative experience occurs, you’re likely to remember it and often will look at alternatives to carry out your goal. You wouldn’t go back to a restaurant if the food was poor, or the service was bad – a website is the same. 

Good websites don’t just happen; it takes more than just guesswork and flashy visual design. If the fundamentals aren’t in place, the chances are high that your opportunity to showcase your brand and company will be lost. You have a limited window to impress a new user, and a poorly crafted website or convoluted user journey can turn off your potential customers leading to disengagement - or worse, a damaged reputation.  

In this blog piece, we’ll look at what’s important to your website and how to get the most value return out of what you’re conveying for your practice or firm.  

Who shares the market?  

When analysing your competition's user experience (UX), it's important to go beyond surface-level comparisons. To gain valuable insights into the UX landscape, you need to first understand your target audience. A data-driven approach that employs various research methods such as surveys, interviews, and usability testing can help you collect a diverse range of user perspectives. This information can then be used to shape your design decisions. 

Imagine designing a house without knowing who lives in it. Would you prioritise office space or cosy corners to escape? Open kitchens or dedicated pantries? Just like building a dream home requires understanding its inhabitants, crafting stellar user experiences (UX) hinges on knowing your audience. Here's why: 

Speak their language, not yours  

Users have diverse needs, expectations, and technical skills. Understanding their demographics, goals, and pain points allows you to tailor your website's language, layout, and functionality. No more confusing jargon or irrelevant features – the website speaks directly to what they need. 

Solve their problems, not create them

Websites can be frustrating labyrinths if designed with internal logic instead of user journeys in mind. Knowing how users navigate, what information they seek, and where they get stuck empowers you to design a frictionless path towards their goals. 

Build trust and loyalty

A website that anticipates users' needs feels intuitive and helpful. This fosters trust and builds loyalty, encouraging them to return and engage further. Conversely, a website that ignores their needs creates frustration and drives them away, harming your brand image. 

Boost conversions and ROI

Websites exist to achieve specific objectives, whether it's selling products, generating leads, or spreading information. Understanding your users ensures the website directs them seamlessly towards these goals, maximizing your return on investment and increase your conversion rate. 

In essence, knowing your website users isn't just a best practice, it's the foundation of a successful UX strategy. By taking the time to truly understand their needs and motivations, you can create a website that feels less like a digital maze and more like a welcoming haven, ultimately leading to a happier user, a stronger brand, and a thriving online presence. 

Who visits your website? 

Conducting User research and leveraging empathy through Qualitative and Quantitative data.  

Evaluating competitors and conducting user research to empathise with your users helps you understand how users interact with a website and identify any issues or frustrating pain points. This can help you avoid similar pitfalls and create a more user-friendly experience on your website. 

Furthermore, comparing the features offered by your competitors, including unique functionalities, content strategies, user interface (UI) elements, and overall information architecture, provides valuable insights. Look for innovative approaches that enhance user engagement and identify areas where they excel in terms of usability and accessibility.   

It's important to keep up with the latest design trends, as they can help to spark your creativity and provide inspiration. However, it's important to remember that just because something is a trend, it doesn't necessarily mean that it will work for your client or be considered best practice. It's always best to approach trendy design elements with caution and consider how they align with your client's needs and preferences. 

Showcasing concrete examples of successful competitor websites highlighting specific design elements or UX features that contribute to their effectiveness helps readers visualise the concepts and understand their practical application. Presenting case studies where analysing the competition led to significant improvements in website usability and user engagement provides real-world evidence of the benefits of competitor analysis in action. 

Remember, the goal is not to blindly copy your competitors, but to learn from their successes. When you are dealing with a client, it is important to understand their pain points and the audience they are targeting. This will help you provide them with the right solutions and make your services more effective. To do this, you should make use of all the resources available to you, such as their website, social media profiles, previous marketing campaigns, and customer feedback. By analysing this information, you can gain valuable insights into their business and develop a better understanding of their needs and goals. This will help you tailor your approach and deliver customised solutions that meet their specific requirements. 

When working with a client, it's crucial to delve into their pain points and identify the audience they aim to reach. This understanding forms the bedrock for providing effective solutions and enhancing the efficacy of your services. Leveraging available resources such as their website, social media profiles, past marketing endeavours, and customer feedback is indispensable in this process. 

Tools like Google Analytics, Hotjar, and Mouseflow can be instrumental in dissecting these resources. Google Analytics offers comprehensive insights into website traffic, user behaviour, and conversion metrics. It enables you to track key performance indicators (KPIs) and understand how visitors interact with different pages of the site. 

Hotjar, on the other hand, provides heatmaps, session recordings, and surveys to visualise user behaviour and gather direct feedback. This tool helps in identifying pain points and areas for improvement on the website by visually representing user interactions and preferences. 

Mouseflow further complements these insights by offering session replay, heatmaps, and funnel analysis. It provides a detailed view of how users navigate through the website, where they drop off, and potential bottlenecks in the conversion process. 

By harnessing the power of these tools, you can extract valuable data to gain deeper insights into the client's business landscape. This information allows you to tailor your strategies and solutions precisely to their needs and goals. Understanding their audience demographics, browsing patterns, and preferences enables you to craft customized approaches that resonate with their target market, ultimately driving better results and fostering long-term client satisfaction. 

two women pointing at the yellow stickers

What causes friction? 

Make the journey frictionless. Seamless. The goal of User Experience design is to reduce the amount of clicks it takes for a user to complete their journey.  Even better: remove the obstacles that will negatively impact the actions we hope to achieve. What we would begin with is:

In-Page Navigation: Within the broader UX strategy, in-page navigation plays a crucial role in enhancing the user experience (UX) for a law firm’s website. Here's how: 
1. Smooth Scrolling Experience:

Long pages are common on legal websites as they often contain detailed information. Effective in-page navigation allows users to jump to specific sections seamlessly, avoiding the need for excessive scrolling. This improves accessibility for users with disabilities and ensures a smooth user journey. 

2. Enhanced Content Exploration:

Strategic use of in-page navigation, like anchor links or tables of contents, empowers users to explore specific areas of interest within a page. This promotes deeper engagement with your content and ensures they can easily find the information they need.  

3. Improved User Control: 

In-page navigation provides users with a sense of control over their experience. They can navigate through content at their own pace, focusing on relevant sections, leading to a higher level of satisfaction. 

4. Increased Conversion Rates:

 By enabling users to quickly access specific sections like contact forms or service pages, in-page navigation can streamline their process of getting in touch. This allows for increased lead generation and higher conversion rates for legal websites.  

5. SEO Benefits:

Clear and well-structured in-page navigation using relevant keywords can improve search engine optimisation (SEO). This helps your website rank higher in search results for targeted keywords, leading to increased organic traffic. 

Examples of effective in-page navigation for professional services websites: 

  • Table of contents listing key sections at the beginning of a long page. 
  • Anchor links within the body text directing users to specific sections relevant to the topic being discussed. 
  • Sticky navigation elements that remain visible while scrolling, allowing users to easily jump to different sections at any point. 

By prioritising well-designed in-page navigation and removing user friction, you can contribute significantly to a positive user experience, improve conversions, and ultimately, help your professional services website achieve its goals. 

It might seem like a helpful method to give your website visitors all the options they could ever think of, but your menu navigation should be restricted to the core. By overcrowding your menu navigation, you can cause: 
1. Cognitive Overload:

Too many menu options overwhelm users, making it difficult for them to find what they're looking for quickly. This leads to frustration and can cause them to abandon the website altogether. After all the work you do to get them on-site, the last thing you want is a click-out.

2. Reduced Scan-ability:

A cluttered menu is difficult to scan, hindering users from easily identifying the relevant option. This can lead to missed opportunities, as users may overlook valuable information or services offered by your firm.

3. Impedes User Flow:

An overcrowded menu disrupts the natural flow of navigation, causing users to take longer to find the information they need. This can negatively impact the overall user experience and decrease engagement.

4. Inconsistent Branding:

A cluttered menu can create an unprofessional and visually unappealing experience, contradicting the image of a professional services firm.

5. Accessibility Issues:

Menus overloaded with options can be challenging for users with visual impairments or disabilities to navigate, making your website less accessible.

Do this instead: 

  • Prioritise essential pages: Focus on the most important pages that users are likely to visit, such as the "About Us," "Services," and "Contact Us" pages. 
  • Group-related items: Categorise similar services or information under submenus for better organisation. 
  • Use clear and concise language: Avoid jargon and legalese, opting for easy-to-understand labels for each menu item. 
  • Limit the number of top-level menu items: Aim for 5-7 top-level options for optimal scan-ability. 
  • Utilise search functionality: Provide a strong search bar to allow users to quickly find specific information within your website. 

By following these principles, you can create a menu navigation that is user-friendly and aesthetically pleasing to support an optimal end-to-end user experience on your legal firm’s website. 

 

Let users know what they are interacting with by labelling! Labelling with clear information plays a crucial role in both identifying key topics and enhancing user experience (UX) on search pages and biographies (bio pages). Here's how: 
Improved Information Architecture 

Labels, and specifically clear labels, act as road signs guiding users to the most relevant information efficiently. They categorise content, allowing users to understand the overall structure and location of specific sections effectively. Why does this make that much of a difference?  

Well, imagine yourself at an airport, already quite a stressful ordeal, but now imagine it with no signs and you need to find your boarding gate. No one wants to struggle to navigate and find relevant information. They want to feel well-directed and informed. The same goes for your website and your user’s experience. Ideally, you want them to keep returning and feel at ease getting around the site.  

Enhanced Scan-ability

In the first instance, users often scan search pages and bios for specific information. Clear labels like headings, subheadings, and bullet points make it easier for users to pick out the key points and understand the content's gist. If you make the experience easy and remove as much friction as possible, your conversion will increase as a result. 

Reduced Cognitive Load 

Clear labels minimise the mental effort required to process information. Users don't have to decipher ambiguous labels or spend time guessing what content lies behind them. This leads to a smoother and more efficient user experience.

Why Invest in UX Design for Your Law Firm? 

In today's competitive legal landscape, your website is often the first impression potential clients have of your firm. A poorly designed website can deter visitors from engaging with your services, ultimately harming your bottom line. Conversely, a well-crafted website with a focus on user experience (UX) can be a powerful tool for generating leads, improving conversions, and boosting your return on investment (ROI).  

By partnering with a UX design expert and an international digital consultancy, you can ensure that your law firm’s website is designed to attract, engage, and convert potential clients. Don't miss out on the opportunity to leverage the power of UX design to achieve your business goals. 

We are a leading UX design agency with extensive experience in the legal industry. We can help you create a website that delivers exceptional user experience and drives results. 

 

Contact us today for a free consultation!

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