What should I avoid when writing content for my law firm website?

What should I avoid when writing content for my law firm website?

View profile for Joe Marcovitch
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If you already know a thing or two about writing digital content, you’ll probably be aware of some of the techniques you should be utilising to craft effective copy.

We recently discussed what the secret is to writing great SEO copy, as well as the type of content you should be including on your law firm’s website.

But have you ever stopped to consider the practices you should be avoiding when you put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard in this case)?

Here, we discuss exactly that, ensuring that you know exactly what you shouldn’t be doing when you’re writing content for your law firm’s website.

Things you should avoid when writing content for your website

Legal jargon

First things first – keep it simple. It’s important to remember that, when you’re writing content for your law firm’s website, you’re generally going to be writing for your chosen target audience. Of course, this target audience will vary depending on the services you provide and the type of client you want to attract, but it’s important to make sure that your content is as accessible as possible.

It’s something our content team discusses a lot. While it is a well-worn cliché at this point, it’s true that some lawyers tend to write for other lawyers. So, make sure you avoid using any legal jargon (unless you explain it) and don’t refer to any complicated legislation with the assumption that your readers will automatically understand what you’re describing.

Complicated formatting

You could write the very best content the legal world has ever seen, and it will mean absolutely nothing if your formatting is all over the place. From our experience, we’ve seen plenty of blogs and services pages which contain excellent content, rich with information and personality, but are let down by bizarre formatting which serves to confuse the reader.

Once again, simplicity is your friend. Don’t piece together long-winded paragraphs spanning sentence after sentence, break up the page with clear headings and, if you’re going to add any sort of interactive element, do so sparingly.

An unproofed edit

No one, not even the most seasoned copywriter, is infallible when it comes to making a grammatical error or two. So, after you have finished writing a piece of content for your law firm’s website, always give it the once over, no matter how perfect you think it is.

It’s usually even more beneficial if you can enlist the support of one of your colleagues to cast a fresh pair of eyes over what you’ve produced, as they’re probably more likely to spot if there are any minor mistakes that can be easily rectified.

Writing without a purpose

When you’re writing any piece of content, you need to remind yourself that you need to be writing with a clear purpose and goal in mind. Simply writing without any defined purpose may be enjoyable, but it won’t help drive any sort of results.

So carefully think about what you’re doing. Are you writing a blog to simply provide useful information to your clients? Are you trying to promote a new service? Strengthening your ‘brand’ by drafting a new staff profile? Whatever it is, make sure that you remember what you’re looking to achieve.

Producing a direct sales pitch

It can be very easy to fall into the trap of simply rolling out a sales pitch when you’re writing content. So easy that you might not even realise you’re doing exactly that until it’s too late!

Coming across as being too sales-like isn’t going to win you any favours, nor will it add any value to your audience. Even where you’re ‘selling’ a service, there’s no benefit to producing content which does nothing but advertise said service, as you aren’t going to be demonstrating that you have your audience’s best interests at heart.

Duplicating existing content

It’s an unfortunate truth that it’s difficult to write anything that’s wholly original, such is the expansive nature of the internet. We should stress that there is nothing wrong with borrowing an idea or two for your own content – so long as you make sure you put your own spin on them.

While simply duplicating or copying content from other sources isn’t great practice to start with, it also has other negative consequences for the page and your website in general. Google is sophisticated enough to recognise where you have just copied or plagiarised a chunk of text and will penalise you for doing so.

Keyword stuffing

If you’ve got a basic understanding of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), you’ll probably understand keyword research is essential if you want your page to stand the best possible chance of appearing in Google search results. But be mindful of going overboard when it comes to keywords – there is such a thing as having too many mentions of a keyword.

Keyword stuffing refers to excessively filling a page with keywords with the intention of exploiting Google’s search ranking system. Simply put, it won’t work, and will only backfire when attempted.

You’re much better off identifying a keyword before naturally integrating it into the content.

So, what should my content include?

Writing content for your law firm’s website isn’t an easy task, especially if you don’t have a previous writing background, or you don’t have a marketing role within your firm. Keeping these pointers in mind should put you on the right track and will ensure that you avoid any mistakes that will immediately push your potential clients away.

At Conscious, we have a team of expert copywriters who can provide plenty of support, and take on the task of writing your content on your behalf, so you can be sure you’re in safe hands (yes, this is the ‘sales pitch’ we mentioned earlier).  We are not saying DON’T do it, but notice that we did it right at the end!

If you want to find out more about our copywriting service, contact our team on 0117 325 0200 or email sales@conscious.co.uk.