Why Your Law Firm Needs a Mobile-Friendly Website...Now
Create a Powerful, Competitive Advantage for Your Law Firm with a Mobile-Friendly Website
Over the past decade, the purchase and use of mobile devices has exploded, revolutionizing the way users browse the web. If your law firm’s website isn’t optimized for viewing by those users, you could be missing out on a huge opportunity to reach and serve potential clients.
What Is a Mobile-Responsive Website?
Before smartphones took the world by storm, pretty much all websites were designed and built around standard desktop browser window sizes and functionality. Now, many of those old sites continue to look alright on a desktop or laptop computer but render awkwardly on mobile, with users often having to use zoom functions to hone in on the content of their interest and the links they want to access.
A mobile-responsive website uses the exact same elements that are built into a desktop design but are coded to adjust to different devices and viewports. Navigation menus may collapse into three-lined “hamburger” menus, blocks of text may fall below images rather than sitting beside them, and click functionality may be replaced with fallbacks that are more intuitive to visitors using a touch-based screen.
Reasons to Go with a Mobile-Responsive Law Firm Website
According to data from Statista, web traffic from mobile devices now accounts for more than 50% of total web traffic, a figure that is growing every year. In other words, more and more internet users are depending on their devices to search for law firms and access legal information.
Websites that are not mobile responsive may cause users to hit the back button for the following reasons:
- They may prevent users from accessing parts of your site: Occasionally, sites that were designed specifically for desktop look “cut off” on mobile; text, links, images, buttons and videos that show up just fine on your home computer may get awkwardly cropped on a smaller screen, potentially rendering some content inaccessible.
- Key information—practice location, contact information—may appear smaller/harder to find: If potential clients can’t find what they’re looking for, they may surf on over to a competing law firm’s website that features easy-to-reach business info.
- They look out of date: Most major businesses now have mobile-responsive or mobile-specific websites, meaning users are getting used to seeing information displayed in certain ways on their phones. If you don’t keep up with mobile standards, you run the risk of isolating some users. This is of particular concern considering the fact that your law firm website is often a potential client’s first interaction with your brand—and no one likes to make a bad first impression.
- They take too long to load: Desktop computers still tend to have more power to load complex content than smaller devices do; if your site doesn’t load quickly on all devices, some viewers may leave—or bounce, in SEO speak—immediately. What’s worse, slow load speed will kill you in mobile search engine rankings.
Mobile-Specific Versus Mobile-Responsive Websites
While we’ve mostly talked about mobile-responsive websites in this article, a mobile-specific (aka mobile-dedicated) website may work just as well for your company. Mobile-specific websites are designed separately from the desktop version, often including similar elements but with content tailored to smaller devices. They often feature a more “curated” level of content (ie, less content) and sometimes live on a separate domain or subdomain.
If you’re not in the market for a website redesign and are part of a relatively small firm, a mobile-specific website could very well check all the boxes in your law firm's mobile-friendly marketing strategy. On the plus side, mobile-specific websites designed and developed to reflect your current online branding usually cost about 10% of what desktop website redesign and development projects cost.
As a downside, mobile-specific sites often require double the content entry—when you update a page or navigation item on your main site, you may need to update that same element a second time on mobile.
If you’re thinking of rebuilding your site from the ground up, have a complex array of content to display, and want to streamline your content-entry process, a mobile-responsive website design is the way to go—it is both cost and time effective and guarantees that you’re bringing your law firm’s website into the modern era.
Looking to Invest in a Mobile Strategy for Your Law Firm?
Our team here at efelle creative has decades of collective experience designing and developing both mobile-specific and mobile-responsive law firm websites. Let our team of web design and development professionals help you build an eye-catching and highly functional website that sets your law firm apart from the rest. Please call 206.384.4909 or fill out our online contact form to get in touch with one of our online marketing specialists for more information.