Insights > The Digital Age for Law Firms is NowPublished
The Digital Age for Law Firms is Now
"Digital presence" is a buzzword that's buzzed for a reason. Despite the worst of COVID being behind us, businesses in all industries realise the necessity of an effective online presence. And while some have fully taken the digital reign, law firms have been one of the biggest laggers.
In a recent survey of the top 100 law firms, only 1 had "excellent" website speed on mobiles, while 66% had poor loading speed—a major impediment on how much visibility you get on Google. But the battle for law firms is more significant than getting found online: it's a battle to differentiate from the competition, retain clients & talent and somehow increase client referrals—all while managing a heavy workload.
However: a fair number of law firms are acting. In this year's Bellwether report, 33% of law firms say that web development is high on the agenda, 22% say it's social media, and 36% say it's increased investments in tech.
But why is a digital presence so crucial for law firms? What challenges are in the way of its adoption? And what specific solutions does the market offer? We'll unpack each one by one.
Why A Digital Presence is Paramount for Law Firms
While COVID directly changed things for law firms, perhaps the most significant change was on the side of their clients. A stat by Gartner revealed that 83% of B2B purchasing decisions happen before clients engage with you. And how do they form that decision? They read everything about you online.
Even if it's a referral, you can be sure that potential clients will be checking your website. And another shocking stat? They'll form an opinion about it in 0.05 seconds. A clear, easy-to-navigate website that showcases your values & expertise won't just impress your existing clients—it will attract new enquiries from the right type of client.
And, as your website—that's just the first step. Thought leadership articles, social media posts, and emails—all working together to build your authority, differentiate you from the competition, attract new talent, and ultimately grow your law firm. But if it ticks all these boxes, why have law firms been slow to get on board?
Why Adoption Has Been a Challenge for Law Firms
Unlike other industries that have had a leg in the digital world pre-pandemic—the bias for law firms has always been about having an excellent physical presence (i.e. great offices). But now, the challenge is more than developing an online presence that matches the physical.
Planning and executing a digital growth strategy is an unwanted burden on fee earners, whose focus—very rightly—is on billable hours. When Bellwether asked law firms what was stopping them from implementation, the most prominent reasons were the lack of time (52%), technical expertise (46%), understanding (36%), and budget (35%).
Something like writing thought-leadership content—which more and more law firms realise is critical to standing out—takes time and is often delayed in a bottleneck of various gatekeepers. While outsourcing offers a solution, Bellwether showed that posts with the most extensive reach/responses were from the profile of individuals in a law firm team (who, in a catch-22, are the fee earners).
Having said all of that…
The Biggest Digital Solutions for Law Firms (& How Indie Ridge Can Help)
To square the expertise writing problem for SME law firms, we've formed a strategic partnership with Passle, creators of the world-class content marketing platform used by global law firms such as Reed Smith and Linklaters. This empowers lawyers to regularly demonstrate their knowledge by creating timely & authentic industry insights and publishing them across multiple channels—all within minutes.
In the first 2 months of using Passle, Forsters received 5000+ more website visitors, Howard Kennedy had 3,500 shares on social media and Colligan Law saw a 4,300% increase in LinkedIn Traffic. Now, because of our unique partnership with Passle, small-to-medium-sized law firms can afford to own a website integrated with the ultimate content marketing technology—empowering them to showcase their leadership like the global firms and differentiate themselves in the market.
In addition, we integrate the number one legal content marketing platform with the best-in-class website architecture called JamStack. As a result, you get lightning-fast web page speed (making you more visible on Google) and the ability to showcase your firm creatively & vividly without the limitations of traditional websites—which is why firms such as Amazon, Nike, Sony, and Tesla use JamStack.
As for design at Indie Ridge: our award-winning team, having worked with global brands, will make sure the user experience of your website is clear, intuitive, and engaging—not the standard clunky and frustrating. Fast-loading page speeds, beautiful, clear design, and affordable Passle integration is a game-changing combination for SME law firms.
But really: in a world of digital marketing strategy and growing your business—that's just the start. And if you're a law firm, we're here as a specialist digital agency to help you actualise it.
If you would like to discover how Indie Ridge can help you. Schedule a no-obligation Digital Discovery Session to see how your law firm's website stacks up against the competition, and we'll recommend any necessary changes. We'll also look at key performance indicators and benchmarks to help you evaluate your site's effectiveness.