To your clients, a divorce isn’t just a divorce.
It’s their future hanging in the balance:
- How much money they’ll have to live on...
- The amount of time they’ll get to spend with their children...
- What will happen to the business they’ve worked so hard to build…
Which is why hiring a divorce attorney isn’t just a matter of picking a name off a list…It’s a matter of finding the BEST attorney available.
And to be the considered the best divorce attorney out there, you NEED to have exceptional online reviews from previous clients. Here are three specific reasons online reviews are more important than ever:
1. Online reviews are the first place many people look when they need an attorney
This means reviews aren’t just an afterthought for your prospective clients—they’re one of the key ways prospects are finding and evaluating your practice.
So, if your family law firm doesn’t have a presence on popular online reviews sites like Avvo, Yelp, and Facebook (or worse, you have tons of negative reviews from previous clients on these sites), you could be missing out on opportunities to attract new clients and earn more revenue.
2. People trust online reviews just as much as word of mouth
Many family law attorneys consider word of mouth to be their best business generators.
But the reality is the Internet has created a new, more powerful word of mouth, where the word of one happy (or angry) client can reach thousands of potential clients.
What’s more? People find online reviews just as credible as word-of-mouth reviews. One study found 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.
In fact, legal consumers trust reviews so much, they’re willing to go out of their way to see an attorney who has higher online ratings. More than two-thirds (70%) of legal consumers say they would be willing to commute to an attorney if he or she had better online reviews than another attorney closer to home.
That means what people are saying about your firm online matters.
3. Online reviews impact how visible your law firm is in search engines
When you have a high volume of positive reviews, search engines use this as a signal that your firm is reputable in your local community, and therefore a good match for people searching for a family law service in your area.
As a result, getting more positive reviews can help improve your firm’s ranking in both the traditional, organic (unpaid) search results, and the local search results that appear below the map on the results page.
And why are high search rankings important?
Because they provide another way for prospective clients to find your website.
What are people saying about your firm online?
Now that you know the importance of online reviews for your practice, it’s time to stop and reflect.
How are past clients rating your firm online, and what are they saying about their experience?
Are your reviews giving prospects confidence that you’re one of the leading family law attorneys around? Or are they causing people to question your capabilities and professionalism?
Fortunately, even if your reviews are less than pristine, you can improve them.
Four steps you to attracting better reviews
- Make sure your law firm has profiles on popular review sites like Avvo, Yelp, Facebook, etc. so your practice is easy for prospective clients to find when they’re looking for attorneys.
- Go above and beyond for your clients. The best way to attract great online reviews is to deliver an excellent client experience. Think about what your attorneys and staff can do to make clients feel they are a priority for your firm and then implement those strategies into your day-to-day operations. Just like great service inspires word of mouth, it also inspires clients to leave 5-star ratings.
- Monitor your online reviews on a regular basis and respond to client feedback, both good and bad. When you respond to negative reviews in a professional manner, you show both the client and other readers that you care and are ready to resolve any issues that arise. Just be careful not to post anything that would violate client-attorney confidentiality. In some cases, it may be best to invite the client to a private conversation to work through a problem.
- Use negative feedback as an opportunity to improve your firm. There may be a few disgruntled clients who bring up valid concerns or complaints, whether it has to do with a staff that is slow to return calls or miscommunications about billing. Consider how you can improve operations at your firm so other clients don’t run into the same problems. The more you improve your service and the client experience, the more positive reviews you’ll attract down the road.
If you’re finding it difficult to stay on top of your online reputation, consider hiring a team of professionals who do it for you!
If you want to learn more about how to position your firm as the leading family law practice in your area, talk to a member of our team.