The stereotype of the lazy employee who spends large portions of the workday surfing the Internet on his or her work computer is as outdated as the phrase surfing the Internet itself. Employees spend more of their workday than ever interacting with content via the Internet, but a few assumptions about unproductive Internet use at work must change. First, the line separating the workday from leisure time is blurrier than ever, especially in the legal profession.
Lawyers have always spent long hours outside the 9 to 5 business day conducting research and writing and revising drafts of documents, but today’s lawyers receive an almost 24/7 barrage of emails, text messages, and voice calls on their smartphones. Thus, the idea of the work computer is the most outdated part of the stereotype. Smartphones, the same ones that you use to play a Candy Crush copycat game that your niece got you hooked on, are the primary tool of searching for information that is relevant to your work, whether you are searching the online catalog of a law library, scrolling through Facebook posts that contain evidence to support your client’s case, or looking up the professional contact information of someone you hope will serve as an expert witness.
It should not be a surprise, then, that many of your prospective clients first see your law firm’s website on their smartphones. Unless your law firm’s site is smartphone-friendly, you could be losing out on business.
Content Is King, but Formatting Is Diplomatic Immunity
A few websites from the days of dial-up Internet are still available online, and their die-hard fans are almost as numerous as the long-lived sites themselves, as evidenced by the proliferation of nostalgia pieces about them. That old site that catalogs every mistake the Beatles ever committed to vinyl is pure geek gold, but thanks to its sickly yellow background and tiny type, it’s such an eyesore that only people with the patience and stamina to survive law school would dare try to read it on a mobile phone. To survive today’s Internet, your site should be formatted so that visitors can easily read it on a phone.
Tips for a Mobile-Friendly Website
· Use short paragraphs. A normal-sized paragraph looks fine on a laptop computer screen, but the same paragraph on a phone might as well be War and Peace, and many prospective clients won’t bother to scroll through it.
· Use subheadings to help readers get their bearings. Mobile phone screens don’t have much room for sidebars or tables of contents.
· Format your images in a mobile-friendly way, as described in this post, and position your text and images relative to each other in a way that allows for a readable layout.
· Animation has no place on a law firm’s website, no matter whether it being viewed on a phone or a computer.
Let Law Blog Writers Do the Writing
Having a professional digital marketing firm design your firm’s website and create content for it is a good investment, even better if it only works with law firms. You can count on Law Blog Writers to understand your law firm’s perspective and deliver your message right to your prospective clients and their mobile phones.