Most law firms can benefit from the use of microsites. They provide a way to add focus on certain information – for example, if you want to introduce a new practice or attorney. If you’re not already using microsites, you may have a lot of questions.
In this post, we’ll cover smart ways to use a microsite and proven best practices for creating a great law firm microsite architecture.
What is a Microsite Used For?
A Microsite is a specific page or set of pages that exist separately from your firm’s main website and have a unique URL or domain. In many instances, the design of a microsite differs from the main website. Typically they have a simple, clean structure and don’t offer the navigation elements present in your original website (such as “About Us”), but instead focus on engagement and interaction.
Microsites should be created with a specific purpose in mind. They’re a great way to help visitors focus on something specific without digging through unnecessary information. Since they are easier and more convenient, they tend to offer a better user experience. We suggest creating separate microsites if you want to:
- Speak directly to a highly targeted audience (especially if it’s a different audience than your normal website reaches)
- Promote a specific marketing campaign
- Launch anything “new”, for example, a new service or new podcast
- Share more information about your brand
- Highlight information from a study or white paper
- Encourage a call-to-action that’s separate from your website (like registering for an event)
Want to learn if creating a microsite is the right decision for your firm? Check out this free on-demand webinar: Law Firm Microsites: A Good or Bad Idea?
5 Tried-and-True Aspects of an Effective Law Firm Microsite
What are the fundamentals of a successful law firm microsite? Each of these characteristics should be considered as you develop your law firm’s microsite. Failing to give thought to any of these elements could make a difference in performance.
1. One Clear Goal
Consider why you are creating the microsite and what you want it to achieve. Remember that your focus is on simplifying messaging as much as possible around one particular area. Ensure that your audience knows exactly what information they’ll get from your law firm microsite, and precisely what they should do next.
2. A Distinct Call-to-action
After you’ve established the goal of your law firm microsite, you should be able to choose which call-to-action (CTA) will be most beneficial. Here you will consider what success looks like to you – is it downloading something, or clicking through to your main site? Understand what you want the visitor to do after landing on your microsite, and create a clear CTA.
3. A Well-defined Audience
You can’t really narrow down your goals without knowing whom you are speaking to on your law firm microsite. Your target audience will determine the tone, messaging, design style, and interactive components of the microsite. Remember that you might be speaking to a different audience than on your general site, so more research may be required in order to develop the most impactful content.
4. A Visual Story
Microsites tell a story. That story could be about your latest campaign or why you launched your newest practice area, but it’s important to organize information in the most compelling way possible. We know that audiences don’t usually care for a lot of text. Instead, focus on bulleted lists with lots of white space, animations, illustrations, or infographics. Your goal is to keep users scrolling and interacting until they’re ready for the CTA.
5. Engaging Design Style
Many microsites mirror the branding elements of their larger websites. You can go that route, or you can change things up slightly. If you’re customizing your microsite to appeal to a different audience than your normal site, you may want to make some design changes. If the microsite is part of a larger campaign, you can keep the same look and feel as other campaign collateral or print pieces. Whether you plan to adopt a unique design style or stay with your original website’s, it’s important to be intentional. Don’t simply copy your home page designs, for example.
Microsites are a great extension of your original website and a smart way to engage targeted audiences. Make sure you’ve given real thought to all 5 of these characteristics as you craft your microsites.