You know you need an About page and a Contact page for your legal site, but you don’t want to go overboard on additional content. While it’s wise to focus on a few pieces of key content, you might be surprised at the content roadmap we’re about to lay out.
You need robust, nuanced and ethical content. Yes, even a new attorney website should be fully stocked with content to stand up to competitors. This content needs to help you engage potential clients, appeal to Google and satisfy your local bar association.
Here are the must-haves, the nice-to-haves, the ethical considerations, and the ultimate model for content for lawyer websites.
The must-have pages
Here are 5 core pages you should consider having on your law firm’s website. Each one fulfills a key client need, like reaching out to book a consultation or learning about your expertise.
#1 – Contact: phone numbers, emails, physical location
This information deserves its own Contact page, but it should also be listed clearly and prominently on every page of your site so potential clients can easily reach out.
#2 – Practice Areas: legal services you offer
Create a unique sub-page for each practice area and use plain language to explain the services you provide.
#3 – Attorney Profiles: bio for each attorney
This is different from your About page! Each attorney should have a comprehensive profile that includes their areas of specification, experience, qualifications, achievements and a professional photo. This builds trust and helps with SEO via the E-E-A-T principle.
#4 – Blog: high-quality content, regularly published
Discuss legal topics relevant to your practice areas. Publish regularly and only publish high-quality content that actually meets the needs of your potential clients.
#5 – FAQ: short answers to your most commonly asked questions
If you can anticipate and answer common client queries, you’ll save time and earn trust. Look back through your email inbox to find ideas for questions.
Finally, you should incorporate case results or client testimonials somewhere on your site although they don’t necessarily need a separate page.
More than 70% of people find testimonials more credible than a company talking about itself. So share quotes from satisfied clients and highlight successful case outcomes (while protecting confidentiality, of course). Social proof lends credibility, which is especially important for a new firm.
What about word count?
All your content should be as concise as possible. 300 words is appropriate for most attorney profiles. 100 words is the max for a Contact page. 800 to 1,000 words is appropriate for most practice areas. For blog posts, it depends on the type of content—but aim for somewhere between 500 and 750 words. Of course, these word counts are general guidelines and may not be appropriate for all web pages or articles. Remember to write for your visitors and their needs; if a common question requires a more comprehensive response or explanation, don’t feel bound by a word count limitation.
While you can certainly launch without these nice-to-haves, these elements can help you stand out from the crowd and create a memorable experience for your online visitors.
Video content is highly engaging and, in some situations, can convey information more effectively. Consider an attorney introduction video, a video client testimonial, or a “meet the firm” informational video. You can even create explainer videos to go along with your blog content, if you have the capacity. Infographics are powerful, too.
Resources and downloads can be a huge value-add! Not only do they demonstrate your expertise and create value for your potential client, but resources can be a prime source of lead gen. Try creating a legal guide, checklist or template based on your expertise.
Social media integration is a no-brainer if you have content posted on other platforms. Link to your firm’s social media profiles and embed the feeds on your site to encourage visitors to follow you on those platforms.
Ultimately, it’s probably better to launch even if you don’t have all the nice-to-have elements.
Before you hit publish on any content, consider some key ethical considerations. Some of these are unique to lawyers and others apply to everyone publishing content online.
Know the advertising rules according to your state bar regulations.
Know the guidelines about making false claims, avoiding misleading statements, guaranteeing outcomes, unjustified comparisons with other firms, how to handle client reviews and client confidentiality, and essential disclaimers. At the very least, be sure to state that your website does not constitute legal advice and that an attorney-client (privileged) relationship is not established until representation is agreed upon by both parties.
Creating content with the use of AI? Be aware that AI-generated content may not be eligible for copyright. Hire human authors for the content you want to own, and use AI to outline—not write—articles.
Finally, accessibility is non-negotiable. People with disabilities should be able to access your website, and overlays are not sufficient. Choose a website template built with accessibility in mind to demonstrate your commitment to equal access to legal services—and protect yourself from lawsuits.
The ultimate content model: pillar + cluster
When you’re creating blog content for your site, use the pillar cluster model to get results.
The pillar is the main hub. It’s a lengthy, comprehensive article on a fairly broad legal topic. You can go up to 2,500 words with these pillar pieces, and they should be extremely well-organized with headings and high-quality images.
The cluster is a collection of articles related to the pillar. These articles go into much more depth on specific subtopics but they should be shorter.
Here’s an example.
- Area of practice: Personal injury
- Pillar content: “Understanding Personal Injury Laws”
- Cluster content: “Steps to Take After a Car Accident”, “Determining Liability in Slip and Fall Cases.”
This requires good keyword research to ensure your topics make sense together.
By interlinking these cluster articles to the pillar content and vice versa, your website not only offers well-organized, in-depth knowledge but also improves its SEO by signaling to search engines that you’re an authority on personal injury law.
Content helps you create a strong impression from the very first click. But it’s got to be the right topic, the right length, and the right format.
Get the essentials done and worry about those nice-to-haves (like a podcast and videos) later on.
Speaking of essentials, great content needs a great website. Enjoy a customized law firm website template from OneFirst in just two weeks, built with accessibility and SEO in mind.