Online Law Marketing Missteps
Technology, personalization and speed are among key trends in online lead form responsiveness
May 16, 2023 / Twenty-seven percent of law firms don’t respond to online leads, giving way for competitors in their market to serve more clients and elevate their presence in their community, according to a new study from leading law firm digital marketing agency Hennessey Digital.
Hennessey Digital’s annual Lead Form Response Time Study takes a close look at the response times to online leads by law firms across the U.S. and identifies trends in lead form responsiveness and law firm website design to help lawyers understand the impact online leads and client intake have on digital marketing performance.
In 2023, the agency contacted 1,300 law firms via their online lead form and analyzed thousands of data points spanning three years that reveal notable shifts in the industry – including some that are surprising.
- Law firms are responding to online leads more quickly. In 2023 there was a 97% jump in the number of law firms that responded to an online lead form in under 5 minutes compared to a year ago. This signals the legal industry is competitive and maturing as more lawyers utilize different technologies to communicate with clients and recognize the importance intake has on maximizing the ROI of law firm digital marketing.
- Many law firms are leaving money on the table. Lawyers are heavily invested in serving their community in their moments of need, as shown by 73% of law firms that responded to their online lead form. However, 27% of law firms either responded in more than seven days or (gasp!) not at all, leaving money on the table and the door wide open for other firms in their market to take on more clients.
- In a world of tech and automation, personalization still matters for lawyers and their clients. While more law firms are using text (33%) and email (56%) to communicate with prospective clients, 89% still picked up the phone and called. 20% of law firms who responded used all three methods – text, email and phone – to respond to online leads. Chat features, which allow for personalization at a greater speed, are on the rise on law firm websites with 64% of sites having chat, up 7% from 2022.
- Law firms are becoming better equipped to serve the growing multinational population. 35% of law firms have Spanish language or multi-language features on their website. This number will continue to grow as tools such as Hennessey Digital’s HD Translate, which the agency developed internally, make it easier for businesses to be discovered on Google and engage with more diverse audiences.
“A company’s ability to generate and respond to leads increases their revenue and the value their business has in the community by serving more people,” said Hennessey Digital Founder & CEO Jason Hennessey.
“We’re beginning to see the positive impact automation and AI tools like ChatGPT have on marketing and how law firms operate. This will only continue to grow and transform the legal industry by enabling firms to scale with greater efficiency and connect more quickly with clients on a personalized level.”
Digital marketing strategies such as law firm SEO and PPC for law firms are highly measurable and effective at driving online leads. Law firms then have one chance to get it right when responding to those leads, and that comes down to minutes.
What cities are the fastest to respond to online leads? Which need to pick up the pace? Curious which law firms were the most responsive? We disclose it all (with some nice pictures, too) online at hennessey.com.
About Hennessey Digital
Founded in 2015 by internationally-recognized entrepreneur and best-selling author Jason Hennessey, Hennessey Digital is a multi-award winning digital marketing agency for top law firms and other industries. Specializing in technical SEO, content marketing, law firm SEO, paid media, pay-per-click advertising (PPC), conversion rate optimization (CRO), and website development, Hennessey Digital helps clients get more qualified leads and high-value cases through holistic marketing strategies and innovation in marketing technology. Hennessey Digital is an all-remote company that has received nods from the US Agency Awards and the US Search Awards, as well as The Financial Times list as one of the fastest-growing companies in the Americas. It’s been honored on the Inc. 5000 list of fastest-growing private companies in America in 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022, and has been named a Quartz Best Company for Remote Workers for two consecutive years.