For eight years, we have been finding examples of the best law firm websites from numerous nominations. Our selection criteria include best practices for website design, basic search engine optimization, and website security.
10 Best Law Firm Websites of 2017
This Calgary, AB, criminal defense firm’s website impressed us with its striking front page and bold lawyer bios and copy. It also gets the basics right, including SSL to protect clients’ privacy.
We liked the way this Toronto, ON, business services, real estate, and estate planning firm used its website to communicate a strong narrative theme.
This Minneapolis, MN, firm for non-profits has one of the best solo practice websites we’ve ever seen, with bold visuals and a clear brand message. And SSL!
We can’t help but love this Newport Beach, CA, environmental law firm for putting a colorful menagerie on its homepage.
We like the way this Fresno, CA, criminal defense firm’s website gets the basics right, including SSL.
We like the tasteful homepage videos on this Denver, CO, criminal defense law firm’s site, which highlight the firm’s lawyers without being distracting.
We like this Swansea, IL, personal injury firm’s website for delivering a compelling message without any of the awful messiness you find on most personal injury law firms’ websites.
This San Jose, CA, personal injury firm uses a clean, soothing design and clear calls to action, not the usual pop-ups and flashing animations.
We like the way this Jersey City, NJ, personal injury, family law, and criminal defense law firm uses its homepage to introduce visitors to its three distinct practice areas and its lawyers at the same time.
We like this Los Angeles, CA, medical malpractice and personal injury law firm website’s polished presentation, which exudes competent professionalism.
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To get a better website for your law firm, start with our guide, 10 Things the Best Website Designs Have in Common. In it, Sam condenses what we’ve learned from years of rating the best law firm websites into a clear, easy-to-follow set of best practices.
Past Best Law Firm Websites Winners
- Best Law Firm Websites, 2016 Edition
- Best Law Firm Websites, 2015 Edition
- Best Law Firm Websites, 2014 Edition
- Best Law Firm Websites, 2013 Edition
- Best Law Firm Websites, 2012 Edition
- Best Law Firm Websites, 2011 Edition
- Best Law Firm Websites, 2010 Edition
About our Best Law Firm Websites Contest
The best websites are designed to be responsive. In 2017, people look at websites on computers, tablets, and phones, and we look for websites that adjust their layout to the screen on which they are displayed. Non-responsive websites are non-starters.
The best websites follow search engine optimization guidelines. While we can’t do a detailed SEO comparison of 200+ websites, one of the most basic elements of SEO is the homepage <title> tag. If it showed no evidence of customization (i.e., it was left as the default “Home” or “Home — Law Firm, LLC”), we removed the website from contention.
Interstitial pop-ups that block the website are bad for users and for SEO. We didn’t specifically remove websites from contention if they had an interstitial pop-up, but it’s clear from the scores that law firm websites with pop-ups are at a serious disadvantage.
Finally, websites collect information about visitors, with and without their knowledge, which is why law firm websites in particular should be secured with SSL. About 18% of this year’s nominees were secured with SSL. We didn’t give these websites a boost, but it’s encouraging to see law firm websites taking security seriously. Unfortunately, two websites were improperly configured for SSL, which is probably worse than not using it at all.
For next year, we plan to take website accessibility into account. According to the US Census, nearly 1 in 5 Americans has a disability, and it is safe to assume many of them hire lawyers for many of the same reasons the other 4 in 5 Americans do. Unless a law firm intends to exclude 20% of potential clients, it should be accessible.
Last year we said it felt like law firm websites had reached a tipping point, and the 2017 nominees bear that out. While not all the websites can make the top ten, over 80 made it to the judging round, nearly twice the number the judges saw last year.
Thanks to this year’s judges: Karin, Gyi, Andy, Cari, Aaron, and Sam.1
Interested in submitting your website to next year’s contest? Look for our call for nominations the first week in January.
Some of the judges designed some of the websites nominated, but obviously we didn’t let anyone judge their own designs. ↩