Sometimes we all need a few visuals to help us understand what we like. I have a practice of keeping a reference file of great law firm websites to help inspire the design, functionality or content of future sites.

In my book, websites cannot be considered the best unless they look good, are easily found and provide the information and functionality users are seeking. I have listed below a few websites I like – a few only meet one two of these qualities as well as my favorite law firm websites that meet them all.

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Law Firm Website: Axiom

Notes: This site employs full screen images of the firm’s attorneys outside of the office, enjoying life. I enjoy the unique visuals that provide a great emotional quality to the site however I do not find it easy to navigate through and find information.

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Law Firm Website: Munger, Tolles & Olson

Notes: This firm has a nice calming color scheme that looks great as well as a consistent left column navigation that makes for great functionality of the site. The conservative neutral color scheme with the burst of the more modern orange is very well done.

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Law Firm Website: Dorsey & Whitney

Notes: The Dorsey site is the first site that comes up in a Google search of my local area as well as two other metro areas I searched for when conducting a generic “lawyer, [insert city, state]” While this is a significant SEO feat, the website is lacking in any design impact.

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Law Firm Website: Lindquist & Vennum

Notes: Similar to the Dorsey site, Lindquist does a great job with SEO and is easily found. While the site is somewhat sterile and corporate looking, they have done a great job of integrating local imagery from the cities where they are located that provide familiar images for potential clients.

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Law Firm Website: Katten Muchin Rosenman

Notes: According to eye-tracking surveys, you will first notice the company logo, scan through the nice calming image, then land on the right drop-down box that ask “How can Katten help you?”. This is a brilliant example of branding combined with the functionality your potential clients are seeking.

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Law Firm Website: Donohue Green

Notes: I love how this site integrates a warm neutral with a clean modern feel. There is also a great combination of a traditional site that employs great visuals and layout with a “news” section that includes a blog for the firm to expand into Web 2.0 and provide additional content and news.