Web Project: Attorney Chris Burns

Visit the website at http://floridacyclinglaw.com.

Frustrated with the lack of website inquires as well as his site's search engine “invisibility”, Bicycle Accident Attorney Chris Burns turned to Gist Create for help. Conversion rates for his law firm's website just weren’t meeting expectations, especially when factoring in all the time, energy and associated costs being spent on the website.

  • Attorney Chris Burns
  • Attorney Chris Burns
  • Attorney Chris Burns
  • Attorney Chris Burns
  • Attorney Chris Burns

Project Highlights

  • Chris and his staff now have full control of content using ExpressionEngine, a powerful, easy-to-use content management system
  • Case results are now provided, allowing visitors a better understanding of his bicycle accident experience
  • A well organized cycling law blog is available allowing Chris to show his expertise and provide insight into his profession

Beauty is Only Skin Deep

While auditing Chris’ website many issues quickly became clear. Upon first glance the site was presentable, but a closer look revealed several usability and navigation issues, as well as a lack of apparent call to actions, and copy which lacked personality, a common problem among law firm websites.

The underlying code was a wreck preventing the website from performing well in the search engines. Keyword phrases (which weren’t properly researched) were stuffed here and there, code hierarchy was non-existent, the URL structure was hard to decipher, images were extremely large (causing the site to be slow and devalued by Google), proper keywords weren’t being optimized, and code roadblocks were littered across the site halting search engines from properly indexing the content. On top of all of that the previous site used two content management systems, Wordpress and Joomla! And to top that the Wordpress installation was outdated and hacked. Eek!

The report we provided confirmed Chris’ suspicion that he was in need of help. Since fixing the existing website would have been like climbing the Alpe d’Huez, Chris hired us to redesign his law firm’s website from scratch. Armed with several objectives we went to work.

Branding a Law Firm Website

As we learned more about Chris’ law practice of representing bicycling accident victims, his passion for cycling (riding six or seven days a week for over 25 years!), advocacy of the sport, as well as his personal cycling accidents, it became clear there was an unique branding opportunity.

The traditional image of Chris in a dress suit was exchanged for one of him in a cycling jersey to better reflect his passion, understanding and advocacy for the sport, allowing visitors a glimpse of the man behind the titles. From the get-go this visual cue sets him apart from other attorneys and shows that his sole focus is handling bicycle wreck victims. We also believe it helps relieve negative stereotypes some tend to have of thinking lawyers don’t necessarily understand their circumstances. This nontraditional approach tied right into updated site copy that is more personable.

As another big change, strong call to actions are used throughout the site and contact information is now in the header and footer of every page. For the home page call to action we intentionally grayed out graphics so that the yellow “Receive Free Advice from Chris” button would be dominant.

Chris is an expert in his field so featuring his skills and experience throughout the site was critical to properly showcasing his talent. The main navigation and supporting pages were developed to answer common questions such as “How can I help?” and “What to do after a Bicycle Crash?”. A supporting blog was developed so that Chris could share his expertise easily and regularly.

Last but not least, an additional page was added to highlight many of Chris’ bicycle accidents over the years. We felt this was a great opportunity to connect with his visitors as he’s just not the average attorney, but someone who knows first hand the pain and frustration of being victimized in a bicycle accident.

Improved Odds for the Maillot Jaune

Like many companies that contact us needing help to increase their website’s leads and sales, Chris’ former website wasn’t properly optimized for search engines. Guesses were made as to what his target audience was searching for which, unfortunately, provided a huge discrepancy in traffic to the site. While doing well in search engines is a lot more than selecting the right key phrases, limiting the site from the start doesn’t help.

Although the new website has just recently been launched, search engine rankings for targeted keywords have already started to improve. We look forward to tracking results, making improvement tweaks, and grabbing the Maillot Jaune from competitors.

Hassle-Free Functionality with ExpressionEngine

To make updates as easy as possible, the site was integrated with a powerful content management system, ExpressionEngine. Chris can now easily create pages, add featured settlements and verdicts, as well as post to the blog. Gone are the days of waiting for the “web-guy” or having in-house help to make updates.

Provided Web Services

SEO Audit, Requirements development, research and competitive audit, information architecture, user interface design, CSS/XHTML template development, CMS (ExpressionEngine) integration, search engine optimization, blog consulting, SEO training, social media branding, and web hosting.

Does Your Law Firm Website Need Help?

Feel free to email or call us (904-638-8880) to discuss how we can improve your conversion rates and search engine rankings.

Gist Create designed a clean, straightforward, hard-hitting, and well-researched website that is appealing and non-intimidating. Careful attention to detail was essential to the final product. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Gist Create.

— Attorney Chris Burns