Law Firm Internet Marketing Mathematical challenge: Click-through or click-away?

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Upon arrival at the landing page of a lawyer’s website, legal consumers immediately begin the process of making a snap-judgment – click-through or click-away? The decision-making process spans an estimated 10-20 seconds, perhaps an entire minute if something of value catches-the-eye.

Calculating website visit longevity

A plugin developed by Microsoft Research lends mathematical insight into website visit longevity based-upon the Weibull distribution model, an engineering equation that measures the amount of time it takes for failure to occur or to not occur.

Data from 10,000-user-visits was captured from 205,873-webpages for the analysis, which produced these results:

  • One-minute is the average time spent on a webpage.
  • One-fourth of most webpage text is actually read.
  • The first 10-seconds are crucial to the visitor’s decision to click-through or click-away.
  • If a visitor stays beyond 10-seconds, the next 20-seconds could go either way.
  • Visitors who remain beyond the 30-seconds may stay an entire two-minutes, leaving more slowly than their 10-30-seconds counterparts.
  • Ninety-nine-percent of webpages are unlikely to fail due to longevity of service.
  • Bad webpages get the click-away in a matter of seconds.
  • Good webpages get the click-through and, perhaps, one or several minutes of visit-time.

The Average Legal Consumer

This analysis is certainly interesting, but how does that apply to legal consumers visiting websites for lawyers? Well, the Microsoft Research data suggests that you’ve got around 10-seconds to connect with legal consumers and prove the value of your Internet brand in order to elongate the amount of time spent on the lawyer’s website.

The SERP (search engine rank page) site scenario below illustrates the real-time scrutiny websites for lawyers undergo in an average legal consumer’s decision-making process. Thoughts running through a legal consumer’s mind who queried “Hannibal MO divorce lawyer,” for example, may go something like this:

  • SERP Site #1 Divorce lawyer. Hmmm. Is there something for me to click to get to the divorce page? (Tick-tock, legal consumer didn’t find what she was looking for in that pivotal 20-30 seconds and has already clicked into the next site.)
  • SERP Site #2 Oh, yeh. Here’s one. Let’s go with, “How much is my divorce going to cost?” (Scans legal content that clearly lacks scannability.) Think I could have come up with “it depends” on my own. (Moved on to next site after 60-seconds, not realizing that several payment options were discussed on Site #2.)
  • SERP Site #3 Cool webpage! (Scanning bold headlines, bullet points, white space, clickable icons and text situated on a background that shouts professional lawyer website design). Okay, filing fees are $300.00 and this lawyer charges a flat rate. That’s good. Let’s see what else he knows. (Clicking through, scanning, reading.) Nice. It is possible to get both alimony and child support. Oh look, “Division of marital property.” (Scanning, reading.) Yep, possession really is nine-tenths of the law. “Parenting plan.” (Scanning, reading.) Not like that won’t be a pain in the behind with my soon-to-be ex. Glad I’ll have my lawyer with me when we’re hammering that out. I’d better write down this number and bookmark the site.

The message, here, is: Make that first 10-seconds count!

Saving you time, increasing website visit longevity

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