Best Law Firm Websites in 2011

Solo and small firm lawyers need nice websites.
Learn how to get a great law-firm website.

The 2014 best law firm websites are out! Check out the current top 10.

The best law firm websites in 2010 article created an overwhelming response, awarding it the #1 most viewed and favorite article of 2010 by vote. This obviously indicates that attorneys and law firms are often searching for visual examples of how to make their law firm website look the best and stand out from many of the typical sites with stock images of columns and gavels.

While there are many Lawyerist articles about how to improve your website with better content, increase traffic with link building, and many other website basics you cannot ignore the impact of the first impression of your law firm website design.

For your website to achieve the level of the best law firm website design you will need to invest in hiring someone who understands and is able to execute your vision. You can be sure that none of these attorney websites were designed by an attorney. This time around this article is including a few law firm websites that have been awarded as the best law firm website by various agencies to support my opinions.

best law firm websites cc11 Best Law Firm Websites in 2011Law firm website: Clyde & Co

Notes: This website was awarded “Overall Best UK Law Firm Website, Intendance ‘Fast 50′ Solicitors’ Website Awards” and it is easy to see why. The home page highlights engaging photos of a featured office that pull your eye in and include great color contrast to the otherwise calm and neutral site.

best law firm websites gl1 Best Law Firm Websites in 2011Law firm website: Get Legal

Notes: While this is not actually a law firm website, it was the winner of the People’s Voice award of the Webby awards of 2009 . The site has a great contrast of dark and light neutral colors, clean and obvious presentation of the logo, and logical layout of all the information.

best law firm websites tc1 Best Law Firm Websites in 2011Law firm website: Thompson Coburn

Notes: This fits in the “best law firm websites” category because it was recognized in the “nifty fifty” awards of 2006. Once again the home page features calming neutrals that draw your eye to the colors in the imagery. The news section is uncluttered and the “Our People” section creates interest and personality by showing a different attorney on each visit.

best law firm websites af1 Best Law Firm Websites in 2011Law firm website: Arent Fox

Notes: This website uses Flash, a huge no-no. However, it is only in a small part of the intro and the design is really nice so lets ignore the elephant in the room for a moment. This grid layout does an excellent job of introducing color and concepts that are pleasing to the eye.

best law firm websites wh1 Best Law Firm Websites in 2011Law firm website: Wilmer Hale Careers

Notes: This site was awarded the best law firm website of 2010 by the Web Marketing Association based on its design, ease of use, copywriting, interactivity, use of technology, innovation, and content. The firm has done a good job adding personality but I find the dark navigation too heavy to balance the otherwise lighter elements.

best law firm websites lb1 Best Law Firm Websites in 2011Law firm website: Liza Burke Law

Notes: Full disclosure: this is a website that I designed, but let me tell you why it qualifies as one of the best law firm websites. The slideshow is gorgeous and conveys appropriate emotion for a difficult topic. Also, the minimal use of color ensures that the logo stands out and the links support the branding and make the site more functional.

best law firm websites fb1 Best Law Firm Websites in 2011Law firm website: Frost Brown Todd

Notes: Another winner from the Web Marketing association’s awards for best law firm websites from 2005. The site uses bright captivating and unique colors and has clean, professional personalized imagery.

(photo: http://www.flickr.com/photos/charlimages/5105056387/)

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  • http://recruiteresq.com Melissa

    I like Goodwin Procter’s new site: http://www.goodwinprocter.com/. In addition to its other web resources, e.g. Founder’s Workbench. http://www.goodwinfoundersworkbench.com/

    I also like Jacobson Attorneys a/k/a web.tech.law: http://webtechlaw.com/.

  • http://www.burton-law.com Brandon Cogswell

    I nominate my firm’s website for best of 2011. Integrated with social media, blogs and looks great.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      (a) It’s not really an open contest. (b) From what I can tell, the main thing you want visitors to your website to do is “join your team.” If I were a potential client, I would have no idea what I was supposed to do there.

      Your website is very attractive, but it’s also very busy and confusing without a clear call to action.

  • http://www.sjfpc.com Steven J Fromm

    Liza Burke’s is really outstanding. The pictures really integrate with her practice area. Amazing.
    The others I thought either did not look like law firms, were too busy or they made my squirm.
    I am looking to improve the appearance of my website which I am really not happy with, but these seem too high tech and slick. I do not know, maybe it is my age or whatever.

  • Melanie
  • http://www.chrisleibiglaw.com chris

    How does one enter tnese best law firm website contests each year?

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      It’s been based on websites Karin has come across that take her fancy. Since she spends a lot of time looking at law firm websites, that’s a pretty good indicator. Maybe this year we’ll take nominations.

  • Kelly

    These all look like templates. I don’t see anything special here.

    • Dallas

      Given the widespread use of website generators (WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, ect.) among the development community leads to what you refer to as “templates” because this is in fact how those generators get their look – through a “template.”

      Even if its built from the ground up for a specific site, it’s still a template. I suspect what you meant to describe was an “off the shelf” template.

      http://www.singulance.com/en is WordPress based. As is http://www.goodwinfoundersworkbench.com/

      • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

        No, they get their look through a theme, which can be custom, based on a template, or something in between.

        • Dallas

          Says your site’s own Thesis framework, “The Thesis Theme framework is a premium *template* system for WordPress that is designed to serve as the rock-solid foundation beneath any kind of website.”‘

          I am well aware of themes. Frankly, those who work with Thesis also refer to skins, should I have discussed the various layers of how a site gets it look? Likely, for the OP your distinction of terminology is irrelevant. But you are free to correct everyone who posts you your site.

          • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

            Since we all know what Karin means when she says template, maybe we can agree that the semantics aren’t all that important.

  • Marie

    The best in my opinion are:

    1. http://www.borenius.com
    2. http://www.pantazis-law.com
    3. Lisa Burke (above)

  • Lawrence

    Lawyerist is a blog geared toward solo/small firms. So next time it would be nice if this article used only solo/small firm websites or if there was a separate article “the best of solo/small firm websites.” Small firms don’t have the capital to spend on a website that an AMLaw 200 firm has and they are not targeting the same clients for most part.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      Most of the websites featured here are solo and small firm websites.

      • Lawrence

        Getlegal is not a law firm. Clyde & Co, Thomas Coburn, Arent Fox, Wilmer Hale, and Frost Brown Todd are all fairly decent sized firms. Liza Burke Law is the only small firm featured in this article.

        • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

          Hm, you are right. In any case, I don’t think great design belongs only to bigger firms. A small, affordable designer (like Karin) is often just as capable of building a great website as anyone else.

          • Lawrence

            Agreed. That is why I would like to see some great designs that have been done for small firms. Small firms have different personalities and different clients than large firms, which should lead to different designs. If Karin has done some small firm websites I would appreciate it if she would share links to the websites in the comments section here. I’m not the only person that would like to see some more great small firm designs – one of our peers made a similar comment to the 2010 article.

  • http://www.fastfirms.com/ Dan Toombs

    Nice round-up Karin. Must be due for your 2012 picks.