Law Firm Website Inspiration: A Guide on Engaging Website Design

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Quality information and SEO on a website is important, but it’s only half of the picture — without excellent website design, users may not even make it to your ‘contact us’ page.

In 2021, it has never been more apparent that technological progress is accelerating.  Every single day, we are bombarded with new apps, specifically targeted advertisements that seem to speak directly to our inner selves, and the constant feeling that we must “keep up.”  It has never been more important for creators and designers to cut through that noise and produce something different. To be truly effective, a website must create a smooth user experience, of course, but it also must be unique and, dare I say… beautiful. Creating websites is an art.

In other words, your website’s design impacts how your firm is perceived and helps keep potential leads on your site. In this post, we give you advice on how to get your design right and provide some examples of what this looks like in practice.

The Most Important Website Design Considerations

Make Your Website User-Focused

We’re shifting our clients’ advertising mindset from the old model of “look at how great we are…[insert more self-praise language here]” to a more user-focused model of “what can we do for YOU?”

The emphasis, of course, is on meeting the needs of the user. Websites that set out to answer users’ questions, address their concerns, and take an empathetic stance are ones that not only bode better with SEO but are inherently more effective. So, how does this impact design? A few possible ways are through creative messaging and creating user-resource sections.

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Remove Distractions and Keep it Simple

Especially in 2021, simplicity is key. Your potential leads are likely considering multiple law firms and bogging them down with too much imagery and/or text risks dissuading them from using your services.

Thus, we suggest flat, minimalistic design. This means little to no drop shadows, gradients, or other more dimensional graphics. Imagery is what now provides depth and flare.. Pages are balanced with clean typography, image boxes, and a lot of white space. Layouts have room to breathe and in turn, the content is easy to read.

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Use Custom Photography

We strongly recommend getting professional photos taken of your firm and office. Custom photos give your web site viewers a personal look at who you are and what you’re all about, creating familiarity and comfort — a valuable advantage among a sea of stock photo websites.

However, we know that sometimes you must use stock photos — when doing so, it’s important to choose and use them carefully. For more on custom and stock photography for law firm websites, see our best practices guide.

Make Sure Content Is Organized

Organized navigation is another key design element that is necessary for success. A confusing interface will not only put up barriers to guiding potential clients through your marketing funnel, but will also likely make them question your professionalism and ability to provide top-quality services.

When designing your website navigation, be sure to make sure all content is streamlined, that your menus are logical and simple, and that your navigation hierarchy is streamlined.

Utilize the Long Scroll

Now that users have become accustomed to the long page scroll, many actually prefer it. It’s easy to see why as you don’t have to load another page to get a nice overview of the firm. The long scroll also translates really well to mobile devices.

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Use a Large Background Image and Simple, Large Type on Top

A large background image with big type in the foreground is one of the most ubiquitous website design trends around. At PaperStreet, when we use this design feature, it’s important that we still make it unique by writing clever, purposeful messages and pairing them with creative photos.

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Unique Bios

As the competition grows fiercer, setting yourself apart has become increasingly more important. One of the benefits of our custom level web design package is having a unique attorney bio page. Those small rectangular headshots are so five years ago. Now, you’ll see large attorney photos that showcase their relatability, personality, and flare.

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Loading and Image Animation

PaperStreet has been utilizing a new trend to jazz up our sites, and that’s the loading animation. It just gives a subtle jolt to the anticipation and engagement factor of the site.

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While image animation is not a new trend, it is worth pointing out that modern,elegant, and subtle effects can be just as engaging and effective as video.

Sticky Headers

We love the sticky header trend because the functionality of it is completely user-focused. A sticky header is when the header actually “sticks” to the top of your browser screen, allowing it to be present even when you are scrolling down the page. A sticky header allows your brand, menu navigation, and contact information to remain readily available for the user. PaperStreet has made this a best practice standard with our websites and you’ll see it across the board in every responsive view (desktop, laptop, tablet, and mobile).

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Test, Analyze, and Improve

No single firm has the perfect website — everything is always up for improvement. Thus, it’s essential that you continuously analyze the performance of your pages, user activity, and conversions in order to identify blockers to solve and successful tactics to continue.

For this analysis, we always suggest Google Analytics. For more on how to use this platform, see our guide.

Top 5 Design Brainstorming Resources

Much like any great artist, our designers love to get inspired by other fantastic work on the web. We look for elements of functionality, color, layout, and photography that can spark ideas for our new web designs.

In these top five resources, we’re willing to expose some of our best online gems and give you a peak into how we prepare for our creative brainstorming stages:

Tympanus Codrops

Rich with functionality, animation and coding tutorials, Tympanus Codrops is a playground for finding cool and exciting features. We love to include interesting page loads (the way in which elements enter or appear on the page) or dynamic hover states (the way in which an object transforms when the user hovers their mouse over a clickable/linked item). The best part about this site is they often include the code and demos to the animation we like, making it possible for our developers to see our creative vision through.

Awwwards

Awwwards is known to have some of the most avant-garde sites nominated and voted on their site. You can view only the nominees or choose from different categories:

  • Honorable Mentions
  • Website of the Day
  • Website of the Month
  • Trending Sites
  • Winners List

Another user-friendly feature of this site is the ability to search by tags like colors, video, development platform, fonts, and more. While the majority of these websites are not corporate or law firm related, they definitely inspire and get our creative juices flowing.

Pinterest

Pinterest has become a library for so much more than recipes, DIY projects, and interior decorating. We find awesome examples of infographics, web design, logos, corporate identities, typography, photography, and other graphic elements. The easy-to-use platform allows us to create “boards” to help categorize and organize our inspiration images. Intuitively, Pinterest knows what we’re interested in based on the items we’re pinning and then suggests more options we may like, an efficient feature for our busy design team!

CSS Design Awards

Much like Awwwards, CSS Design Awards is an online gallery that consists of innovative websites that are nominated and voted on. What makes the latter unique though is the majority of sites featured are due to their cutting-edge technology and use of CSS – a programming language our developers work with.

Behance.net

Behance is a massive online portfolio, showcasing the top artistic talent in the world. Designers, artists, photographers, illustrators, and developers show off their work to be commented on and admired. We not only get ideas for our own projects here, but can be in the creative community applauding and appreciating others’ savvy skills.

Examples of Successful Website Design

So, where do designers draw endless inspiration from?  Colors, shapes, textures, and patterns we see in nature, as well as fine art, architecture, and even printwork such as movie posters, for starters.  But the biggest inspiration for all artists and designers comes from existing designs.  We don’t want to spend countless hours “reinventing the wheel” when that creative energy could be used to improve upon something that already exists.

Our designers naturally have their eyes peeled for the latest and greatest web designs, and sharing with our readers is only a happy byproduct.  We hope our list inspires a vision for your new website. Note: these websites are all 100% PaperStreet designs. 

Law Office of Stacey-Ann Taylor, LLC

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With its vibrant colors, elegant paint-stroke transitions, and perfectly coordinated photography, this site is every entrepreneur’s (and designer’s) dream! So feast your eyes – this is what can be done when a photographer, designer, and client conjure a united vision.

Aliant Payments

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Payments of the future clearly require a website of the future, and this one covers it – from subtle gradients, to the smooth animations, to the glowing titles.  This site is worth bookmarking for the typography inspiration alone.

Wellfleet Strategies

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We’ve given you bold and bright, but what about serious and sophisticated?  You might expect a boring website from a Risk Solutions company, but that is certainly not the case here. Instead, the site creates an atmosphere that seems to engulf its viewers – a whole mood, if you will – and it does not fail to inspire those who want something polished, luxurious, and consequential.

YLaw Group

 

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Ylaw marries the perfect combination of professional and playful with this clean, modern website.  Both the custom and stock photography have been carefully thought out and implemented to create a unique and memorable brand.

West Coast Trial Lawyers 

With its cool blue color scheme and expanding menu bar, this is one of the easiest sites to navigate. The prominent client reviews also go a long way to establishing the firm as a trusted authority.

Bick Law LLP

A perfect balance of playfulness and professionalism dominate this environmental law firm’s internet presence. The striking colors and contrast make for an eye-catching website you won’t want to leave.

Forman Watkins 

This website’s focus and unique perspective create an experience that drives users to the services they need. The minimalistic design goes to show that, in some cases, less really is more.

The Gumprecht Law Firm

This website captures viewers’ attention from the start, thanks to the slightly obscured photos and bold font. We’re especially drawn to the yellow text, which highlights the firm’s many accolades.

Expert Designers to Make Your Website Stand Out

All too often, we have seen law firms create websites that block users from reaching the information they need to reach out to the firm, are inefficiently organized, or just look bad. Even the best firm will fail to capture clients if this is the case.

Our team of designers not only have years of experience with how a website should be organized and laid out, but they also study the latest design trends. This results in effective, aesthetic websites that make your firm stand out from the rest.

To learn more about how our expert team can build the perfect site for you, contact us today.


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